Frost-Arnett Company is on the receiving end of a proposed class action complaint in which a Wisconsin consumer accuses the company of sending letters that overshadowed the woman’s debt dispute rights.
According to the suit, the plaintiff received a letter from the defendant in April 2018 that listed an “Amount Owed” and a “Total Balance” of $128.45. Although the letter identified “MADISON MEDICAL AFFILIATES” as the creditor, it provided the woman with “no additional information regarding the nature or origin of the alleged debt,” the complaint says.
The following May, the suit continues, the plaintiff was sent another letter that similarly listed an “Amount Owed” of $128.45, but unlike the first letter, also included a “Total Balance” of $256.90. The case argues that there was “absolutely no distinction” between the $128.45 debt sought in each of the letters. The back of the second letter, the suit goes on, indicated a “TOTAL PREVIOUS ACCOUNTS” balance of $128.45 and a “TOTAL COMBINE NEW AND PREVIOUS ACCOUNTS” balance of $256.90. According to the case, the letter further stated:
“Please note that any accounts on the back side are not subject to the 30-day validation period for your new account detailed above.”
The suit argues that the defendant’s statement overshadowed the included validation notice because it left the plaintiff unable to determine to which debt the 30-day dispute period applied. The case alleges that the defendant misled the plaintiff by listing two identical debt amounts in a notice when one debt’s validation period had expired. From the complaint:
“By seeking to collect an alleged debt in which the ‘Amount Owed’ is the same as the amount listed under the ‘TOTAL PREVIOUS ACCOUNTS,’ for which the validation period had purportedly expired, and which is otherwise indistinguishable from the prior alleged debt, [the second letter] overshadows the validation notice.”