Pennsylvania Complaint Against Nations Recovery Center, Inc., for Making Multiple Attempts to Harass, Abuse,Threaten and Annoy Consumer

September 21st, 2012 by admin


IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA

 

 JANE DOE

 

          Plaintiff,

 

v.

 

NATIONS RECOVERY CENTER, INC.

 

          Defendant.

 

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Civil Action No.

 Complaint

 

1. This is an action for damages brought by an individual consumer for Defendant’s violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1692, et seq. (hereafter the “FDCPA”), and other state law claims.  These laws prohibit debt collectors from engaging in abusive, deceptive, and unfair collection practices.

JURISDICTION AND VENUE

 

2. Jurisdiction of this Court arises under 15 U.S.C. § 1692k(d), 28 U.S.C. § 1331, 1337, and supplemental jurisdiction exists for the state law claims pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1367.

3. Venue lies in this district pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b).

PARTIES

 

4. Plaintiff  is an adult individual residing in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

5. Defendant Nations Recovery Center, Inc. is a business entity regularly conducting business in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania with a principal office located at6491 Peachtree Industrial Blvd., Atlanta, Georgia 30360.  The principal purpose of Defendant is the collection of debts already in default using the mails and telephone, and Defendant regularly attempts to collect said debts.

FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

 

6. At all pertinent times hereto, Defendant was hired to collect a debt relating to an account originally owed to HSBC (hereafter the “debt”).

7. The alleged debt at issue arose out of a transaction which was primarily for personal, family or household purposes.

8. In or around April 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt.  During this conversation, Defendant falsely threatened Plaintiff that Defendant had a judgment against Plaintiff and that Plaintiff’s wages and bank account would be garnished if the debt was not paid immediately.

9. On or about April 23, 2012, Defendant again contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass Plaintiff.  During this conversation, Defendant again falsely threatened to contact Plaintiff’s place of employment as well and that Defendant had a judgment against Plaintiff.

10. On or about April 27, 2012, Defendant again contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass Plaintiff.  During this conversation, Defendant again falsely threatened that their office had been advised to collect on the judgment and would move forward if Plaintiff did not make a payment arrangement that day.

11. Notwithstanding the above, on or about April 30, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff on eight separate occasions in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse and harass. As a result of these telephone calls, one voicemail message was left by the Defendant indicating that if Plaintiff did not contact Defendant that day that they would execute on the judgment.

12. Notwithstanding the above, on or about May 1, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass.  During this conversation, Defendant threatened to execute the judgment against Plaintiff unless he set up an arrangement by Friday, May 4, 2012.

13. Notwithstanding the above, on or about May 8, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass.  Defendant left Plaintiff a voicemail message stating, “this is simply an attempt to collect the debt that has resulted in a judgment against you through your civil court.”

14. Notwithstanding the above, on or about May 14, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass Plaintiff.  Defendant left Plaintiff another voicemail message that Plaintiff had until Friday, May 25, 2012 to make payment arrangement or the judgment would be executed upon, wages would be garnished, and a bank levy would be issued.

15. Notwithstanding the above, on or about May 15, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass Plaintiff.  During this conversation, Defendant’s representative, Kevin Baker, threatened that Defendant had a pending garnishment of Plaintiff’s wages and a levy of his bank account.  Defendant insisted that Plaintiff make a payment of at least $1,000 immediately and that Plaintiff no longer had until Friday, May 25, 2012 to make any payment.

16. Notwithstanding the above, on or about May 18, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass Plaintiff.

17. Notwithstanding the above, on or about May 21, 2012, Defendant contacted Plaintiff on two separate occasions in an attempt to collect the debt and with the intent to annoy, abuse, and harass.  Defendant left Plaintiff a voicemail message stating, “this is simply an attempt to collect a debt that has resulted in a judgment against you through your district” and “you need to get back with us before the close of May or you can take your chances.”

18. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by engaging in any conduct the natural consequence of which is to harass, oppress, or abuse any person in connection with the collection of a debt.

19. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by causing a telephone to ring or engaging any person in telephone conversation repeatedly or continuously with intent to annoy, abuse, or harass any person at the called number.

20. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by falsely representing the character, amount, or legal status of the debt.

21. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by using representation or implication that nonpayment of a debt will result in the seizure, garnishment, attachment or sale of any property or wages.

22. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by threatening to take any action that cannot legally be taken or that is not intended to be taken.

23. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by using any false representation or deceptive means to collect or attempt to collect any debt or to obtain any information concerning a consumer.

24. Defendant acted in a false, deceptive, misleading and unfair manner by using unfair or unconscionable means to collect or attempt to collect any debt.

25. Defendant knew or should have known that their actions violated the FDCPA. Additionally, Defendant could have taken the steps necessary to bring their agent’s actions within compliance of these statutes, but neglected to do so and failed to adequately review those actions to insure compliance with said laws.

26. At all times pertinent hereto, Defendant was acting by and through its agents, servants and/or employees, who were acting within the scope and course of their employment, and under the direct supervision and control of the Defendant herein.

27. At all times pertinent hereto, the conduct of Defendant as well as its agents, servants and/or employees, was malicious, intentional, willful, reckless, negligent and in wanton disregard for federal and state law and the rights of the Plaintiff herein.

28. As a result of Defendant’s conduct, Plaintiff has sustained actual damages, including, but not limited to injury to Plaintiff’s reputation, invasion of privacy, damage to Plaintiff’s credit, out-of-pocket expenses, emotional and mental pain and anguish, embarrassment, humiliation, damage to reputation and pecuniary loss and will continue to suffer same for an indefinite time in the future, all to her great detriment and loss.

Count I – Violations of the FDCPA

29. Plaintiff incorporates the foregoing paragraphs as though the same were set forth at length herein.

30. Defendant is a “debt collector” as defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(6) of the FDCPA.

31. Plaintiff is a “consumer” as defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(3) of the FDCPA.

32. The above contacts between Defendant and Plaintiff were “communications” relating to a “debt” as defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(2) and 1692a(5) of the FDCPA.

33. Defendant violated the FDCPA.  Defendant’s violations include, but are not limited to, violations of 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692d, 1692d(5), 1692e(2)(A), 1692e(4), 1692e(5), 1692e(10), and 1692f, as evidenced by the following conduct:

(a) Engaging in any conduct the natural consequence of which is to harass, oppress, or abuse any person in connection with the collection of a debt;

(b) Causing a telephone to ring or engaging any person in a telephone conversation repeatedly or continuously with intent to annoy, abuse, or harass any person at the called number;

(c) Falsely representing the character, amount, or legal status of any debt;

(d) The representation or implication that nonpayment of a debt will result in the seizure, garnishment, attachment or sale of any property or wages;

(e) Threatening to take any action that cannot legally be taken or that is not intended to be taken;

(f) Using any false representation or deceptive means to collect or attempt to collect any debt or to obtain information concerning a consumer; and

(g) Using unfair or unconscionable means to collect or attempt to collect any debt.

34. Defendant’s acts as described above were done with malicious, intentional, willful, reckless, wanton and negligent disregard for Plaintiff’s rights under the law and with the purpose of coercing Plaintiff to pay the alleged debt.

35. As a result of the above violations of the FDCPA, Defendant is liable to Plaintiff in the sum of Plaintiff’s statutory damages, actual damages and attorney’s fees and costs. 

Count II – Invasion of Privacy

36. Plaintiff incorporates the foregoing paragraphs as though the same were set forth at length herein.

37. Defendant’s conduct, including but not limited to repeatedly contacting Plaintiff and threatening that Plaintiff had a judgment, when no such judgment existed, and that Plaintiff’s wages would be garnished and that Plaintiff’s bank account would be levied, when such conduct was not legally permitted, constitutes an invasion of privacy.

38. The conduct of Defendant was a direct and proximate cause, as well as a substantial factor, in bringing about the serious injuries, damages and harm to Plaintiff that are outlined more fully above and, as a result, Defendant is liable to compensate Plaintiff for the full amount of actual, compensatory and punitive damages, as well as such other relief, permitted under the law.

JURY TRIAL DEMAND

39. Plaintiff demands trial by jury on all issues so triable.

PRAYER FOR RELIEF

 

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff respectfully prays that relief be granted as follows:

(a) Actual damages;

(b) Statutory damages;

(c) Punitive damages;

(d) Costs and reasonable attorney’s fees; and

(e) Such other and further relief as may be just and proper.

Respectfully Submitted,

FRANCIS & MAILMAN, P.C.

BY:    /s/ Mark D. Mailman

MARK D. MAILMAN, ESQUIRE

GREGORY J. GORSKI, ESQUIRE

Land Title Building, 19th Floor

100 South Broad Street

Philadelphia, PA 19110

(215) 735-8600

Attorneys for Plaintiff

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