Davis v. Hollins Law

Even though it did not expressly so state, given the parties’ prior settlement negotiations, a collection attorney’s voicemail message to debtor sufficiently disclosed even to the least sophisticated debtor that the message was from a debt collector.  Under 11 USC 1692e(11), a debt collector must, in all communications after the first, disclose that the communication is from a debt collector.  This decision holds that this provision is not violated if the least sophisticated consumer would understand from the communication’s contents that it is from a debt collector—even if the communication does not expressly so state.  Here, the debtor dealt with a debt collection law firm over several weeks regarding a compromise and reduced payment on the debt.  The communication clearly identified itself as from the law firm.  The least sophisticated consumer would understand that the communication was in connection with the proposed compromise and hence a debt collection communication.  Therefore, there was no FDCPA violation.

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (Ikuta, J.); August 8, 2016; 2016 WL 4174747

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