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Rivera v. Franklin Collection Services, Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

July 19, 2017

YAHAIRA RIVERA, Plaintiff,
v.
FRANKLIN COLLECTION SERVICES, INC., Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM

          Schiller, J.

         Yahaira Rivera sued Franklin Collection Services, Inc. (“Franklin”), alleging that Franklin violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) when it sent her a debt collection letter containing a settlement offer and advising her to consult an attorney. Franklin has filed a motion to dismiss, which the Court now grants for the following reasons.

         I.BACKGROUND

         On or around March 29, 2016, Franklin, a debt collector, sent a letter to Rivera in an attempt to collect on a debt. (Compl. ¶¶ 5, 9.) The letter, which Plaintiff attached to her Complaint, reads in part:

*SETTLEMENT OPPORTUNITY*
MR./MS. RIVERA,
This account has been placed with our office for collection. You have an outstanding balance of $1950.37 owed to AT&T. In an effort to help you resolve this matter we agree to offer you a settlement of $1365.26. To accept this offer please send payment of $1365.26. If you are not paying this account, call (888) 315-0912 for other available options, or contact your attorney regarding our potential remedies, and your defenses.
I intend to report this account on your credit history after (30) thirty days of you receiving this notice.

(Id. Ex. A [hereinafter “Collection Letter”].)

         Rivera alleges that this language was “threatening and coercive and was made with the intent of scaring Plaintiff into making payment.” (Id. ¶ 12.) She further claims that “[t]his abusive language caused Plaintiff to become extremely upset and disheartened due to the extremely difficult financial struggle she is currently enduring.” (Id. ¶ 13.)

         On February 10, 2017, Rivera filed her Complaint against Franklin, alleging that Franklin violated numerous provisions of the FDCPA.

         II. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         In reviewing a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, a district court must accept as true all well-pleaded allegations and draw all reasonable inferences in favor of the non-moving party. See Bd. of Trs. of Bricklayers & Allied Craftsmen Local 6 of N.J. Welfare Fund v. Wettlin Assocs., 237 F.3d 270, 272 (3d Cir. 2001). A court need not, however, credit “bald assertions” or “legal conclusions” when deciding a motion to dismiss. Morse v. Lower Merion Sch. Dist., 132 F.3d 902, 906 (3d Cir. 1997); see also Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).

         “Factual allegations [in a complaint] must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must include “enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Id. at 570. Although the federal rules impose no probability requirement at the pleading stage, a plaintiff must present “enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of the necessary element[s]” of a cause of action. Phillips v. Cty. of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 234 (3d Cir. 2008). “A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, ...


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