A proposed class action has been filed against Professional Placement Services LLC and Capital One N.A. in which a Wisconsin man claims the defendants sent him a misleading debt collection letter.
According to the complaint, Capital One in January 2018 mailed the plaintiff an account statement regarding a debt associated with his Kohl’s credit card that noted he owed a “new balance” of $3,582.77 and a “minimum payment” of $971.00 due by February 11, 2018. Professional Placement Services supposedly sent the plaintiff a debt collection letter on February 2, 2018 demanding the full “balance” of $3,582.77. The letter also stated, according to the complaint, that the plaintiff should call one of the debt collector’s listed telephone numbers “if any of the above information is incorrect.” The lawsuit argues that this statement contradicted the plaintiff’s dispute rights because it encouraged him to submit any disputes over the phone instead of sending written notification, which would have triggered the dispute protections under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Absent a written dispute, the case suggests, the debt collector is not obligated to provide verification of the debt.
Worse, the lawsuit claims that the letter did, in fact, contain “incorrect” information in that it attempted to collect “portions of the balance that are not yet due.” The case argues that the collection notice demanded the plaintiff’s full balance, referred to as the “new balance” in his account statement, without explaining that the creditor would accept a minimum payment of $971.00 to return his account to a current status. The letter falsely represented that the plaintiff’s account had been accelerated when the “due date” listed in his account statement was still more than a week away, the suit claims.