District Court Rules Passing Debtor Information to Third Party Violates FDCPA

On February 2, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania refuse a motion by the defendant for judgment on the pleadings, ruling that the transmission of a debtor’s personal information to a third-party mail provider for the purpose of sending a debt collection letter constitutes a communication “in connection with collection of any debt” under the FDCPA. As previously covered by InfoBytesin Huntstein v. Preferred Collection & Management ServicesUnited States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit tenuous that the transmission of a consumer’s private data to a commercial mail provider to generate debt collection letters violates section 1692c(b) of the FDCPA because it is considered the transmission of a consumer’s private data” in connection with the collection of any debt”. The district court found that reasoning “compelling,” ruling that the plain text of the law encompasses communications with a third-party email provider. The district court also rejected defendant’s arguments that the CFPB and FTC tacitly endorsed third-party shippers by not pursuing enforcement actions against them: “[B]Because the agencies charged with regulating and enforcing the FDCPA have not addressed debt collectors’ use of letter sellers in a legally meaningful way, and because the statutory language is not subject to a different reading , the Court will give no deference to indeterminate actions. CFPB and FTC.