Third Circuit: Letter from debt collector seeking to “settle” a time-barred debt could violate the FDCPA

The decision is Tatis v. Allied Interstate. Applying the "least sophisticated consumer" standard and following decisions of the Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh circuits, the court summarizes its decision this way:

This appeal arises under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act …. The question presented is whether a collection letter sent to collect a time-barred debt that makes a “settlement offer” to accept payment “in settlement of” the debt could violate the Act’s general prohibition against “any false, deceptive, or misleading representation or means in connection with the collection of any debt.” 15 U.S.C. § 1692e. We hold that it could.


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