The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act specifies information that must be provided to a consumer within five days of the first contact by a debt collector. The complaint for this class action claims that the debt collection letter sent by Valentine & Kebartas, LLC to plaintiff Dena Witt omits both the name of the current creditor and the fact that Witt’s alleged debt is still accruing interest or fees.
Two classes have been named for this action.
Plaintiff Witt allegedly incurred a debt for personal, family, or household purposes with Capital One, NA. At some point, the debt was turned over to Valentine & Kebartas for collection. On or around October 14, 2017, Valentine & Kebartas sent Witt a debt collection letter, which is attached to the complaint as Exhibit A.
In the letter, the company names the original creditor as Capital One, NA. It also has an entry, “Owner Name: LVNV Funding LLC.” However, neither of these entries clearly states who the current owner of the debt is.
This problem is made more confusing because, the complaint says, less than a month before she received this letter, Witt received a letter saying her debt had been sold to Sherman Originator III, LLC. This letter is attached as Exhibit B. This makes it difficult for Witt or any other recipient to know who the current creditor is.
As if that weren’t enough, the complaint accuses Valentine & Kebartas of misrepresenting the amount of the debt owed. That is, the complaint says the company “failed to provide an explicit disclosure of accrued and accruing contractual interest and/or fees per agreement with the original creditor which the current creditor can legally recover…”
Thus, while the letter lists an amount owed, it does not cite a date up to which the amount is valid, and after which additional amounts may be added. This makes it difficult for the consumer to know how much she owes on any given day and whether a specific payment would pay the debt in full.
Both of these omissions, the complaint says, are violations of the FDCPA.