The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Munley
Before the court for disposition is Plaintiff Andrew Morris's motion for class certification. The motion has been fully briefed, and argument has been held. The matter is thus ripe for disposition.
Plaintiff instituted the instant action against the Defendant for a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq. ("FDCPA"). Defendant is in the business of debt collecting, specializing in healthcare collections. Plaintiff seeks to bring the action as a class action pursuant to Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. (See generally Doc. 1, Complaint).
The FDCPA provides that within five (5) days of an initial communication with a debtor, a debt collector has to provide certain "validation of debts" information including such information as the amount of the debt and the identity of the original creditor. 15 U.S.C. § 1692(g). The law also prohibits false or misleading representations. 15 U.S.C. § 1692(e).
Plaintiff asserts that defendant's communications violated these sections of the FDCPA in that a "final" letter was sent before a "validation" letter. Plaintiff seeks to proceed with a class action, with himself as the class representative. The class he seeks to represent is as follows: persons in the United States to whom one or more collection letters were sent by defendant which state that the correspondence would serve as the final and last attempt, without sending a required validation notice in an attempt to collect a debt incurred primarily for personal, family, or household purposes sent on or after one year prior to the filing of plaintiff's complaint.
Before proceeding as a class action, the plaintiff must move the court to determine if the case can be maintained, or "certified" as a class action. L.R. 23.3, FED. R. CIV. PRO. 23(c)(1)(A)
Class actions are covered by Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, which provides:
One or more members of a class may sue or be sued as representative parties on behalf of all only if
(1) the class is so numerous that joinder of all members is impracticable,
(2) there are questions of law or fact common to the class,
(3) the claims or defenses of the representative parties are typical of the claims or ...