Today, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decided a dispute over the statute of limitations defense under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).
Read today’s opinion in Lyons v Michael & Associates.
The facts of the case were straightforward: in 2011 a debt collector sued a consumer in a wrong judicial district, in violation of the FDCPA. In 2013, the consumer filed an FDCPA complaint against the collector. The FDCPA complaint was filed more than a year after the collector filed its suit, but less than a year after the consumer was served with the suit.
At trial, the collector raised the statute of limitations defense. The statute of limitations generally requires consumers to file FDCPA complaints against collectors within a year after the law was violated.
On appeal, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that the discovery rule applies to the FDCPA statute of limitations defense.
Under the discovery rule, the statute of limitations does not begin to run until a consumer knows or has reason to know that a violation occurred. Because the consumer was first served with the collector’s suit within a year before she filed her FDCPA complaint, the collector’s statute of limitations defense failed.
This case is a big win for consumers in the Ninth Circuit, which covers Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Montana, Idaho, Nevada, and Arizona.
Today the United States Supreme Court agreed to decide whether special counsel appointed by the Attorney General may mislead consumers by using Attorney General letterhead.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (aka the FDCPA) prohibits all forms of misleading letters in an attempt to collect a debt. The FDCPA prohibits collectors from falsely claiming to be with the government. However, there’s an exception for state officers.
Read the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals opinion on appeal.
Read the Supreme Court order granting certiorari.
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Did you hear we won in court yesterday?! Mike Fuller was GREAT! I’m still in shock!
Just a further note to thank you for undertaking this matter, not just pro bono but on less than 24 hours’ notice. You did one incredible job. Whatever you did—I’m still not clear— Tremendous result.
We’re still in awe over winning in court. I’m not sure how to show our appreciation, but you were totally AWESOME!!
This apology actually made me feel better than I thought it would! I truly appreciated all you did on this endeavor. Thank you and more.
I heard that you are a man to be feared in a court of law, who is a genius at getting the truth out of someone. Sorry I was not there but you have my thanks.
Michael became my ‘architect’, a skillful legal mind with a clear understanding of complex bankruptcy litigation, and I did not become a ‘victim’, WE WON! Thank you Michael!
I just received the refund check from Wells Fargo for my visa. Congrats sir, you forced them to bend to your will lol. Thank you SO much, this is a huge help.
Thank you so much! We are literally blown away at the timely result of this case. You really do know your stuff! Great working with you!
Your humanity has inspired me to continue paying forward and to assist others wherever I can when called upon. Warm regards,
Success at last! That the last letter we sent to Equifax, TransUnion and Experian really made a difference. Thanks for seeing this through to a successful conclusion.
Thank you, thank you, thank you! Thank you for providing the document and working so late in the night to get it to us.
Thank you all for everything today. We like lawyers that are as tenacious and spunky as we are, and not afraid to fight when needed, good job today.
Michael will not back down even when dealing with huge corporate packs of attorneys. He is the guy you want in your corner.
Michael Fuller is the best. A true advocate for the little guy against corporate America! I can’t thank him enough.
Michael gave us the courage to sue our mortgage company and secured a six figure settlement. Don’t be bullied — hire an attorney to stop illegal collections.
It seems unheard of to have anyone be so generous without asking for compensation. I can’t say enough about the character you’ve shown. Blessings from all of us who believe in what is right.
When [Mr. Fuller] is on the job, I’m not too concerned that [his] opponents are going to be able to get away with much.
Mr. Fuller you are amazing. A super hero. I can not believe how fast you work. Thank you so much.
Mt Hood Meadows
Dept. of Education
Mr. Cooper Mortgage
Green Tree Mortgage
Metro Area Collection
S. Oregon Credit