7th Circuit Holds Time and Money to Send Debt Validation Request Supports Standing

Yvonne Mack received a debt collection notice, referring to a US Bank credit card she had held. She was uncertain that the debt amount was accurate, and thus a submitted a request for validation of the debt via certified mail. She received no response. She then received a second debt collection notice. Confused, she went to the public library again, typed up another request for validation, and sent the request via certified mail a second time.  She never received a response, and subsequently filed a putative class action under the FDCPA against the debt collector and the creditor.

The district court had dismissed her claims on the grounds that she lacked standing, finding the time and money she had spent sending the second validation request was not sufficiently detrimental to constitute an injury in fact. This week, the Seventh Circuit reversed, finding that time and money spent to resolve confusion caused by challenged practices is sufficient to establish standing.

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