The complaint for this class action claims that a debt collection letter sent out by MCS Claims Services, Inc. does not give the letter’s recipient notice of her right to dispute the debt. Failing to do this, the complaint says, is a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).
The class for this action is
The FDCPA aims to protect consumers from abuse by debt collectors. Among other things, it specifies information that a debt collector must provide to a consumer either in its initial communication or within five days thereafter. The requirements are listed in the United States Code at 15 USC § 1692g.
One of the things debt collectors must include is a statement of the consumer’s right to dispute the debt or any part of it. The complaint claims that the letter sent by MCS to plaintiff Patricia Asaro did not include this notice.
Asaro allegedly owes a debt for medical services to Stony Brook University Hospital, which was incurred for personal, family, or household purposes. At some point, she fell behind on payments, and the debt was eventually assigned to MCS for collection. MCS sent her an initial communication in the form of a letter dated July 6, 2017. This letter is attached to the complaint as an exhibit.
The FDCPA requires that the debt collector inform the consumer of several things. First, that unless the consumer disputes the debt, or a portion of it, within thirty days after receipt of the letter, the debt collector will consider the debt to be valid. Second, if the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing during the thirty-day period that the debt is disputed, the debt collector will obtain and send to the consumer verification of the debt or a copy of the judgment against her. Third, that if the consumer makes a request in writing, the debt collector will provide the consumer with the name and address of the original creditor, if it is different from the current creditor.
The complaint claims that the collection letter sent by MCS does none of these things, and that MCS has therefore violated the FDCPA.