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Anela v. AR Resources, Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

June 12, 2018

ANTOINETTE ANELA, Plaintiff,
v.
AR RESOURCES, INC., Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM

          ANITA B. BRODY, J.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff Antoinette Anela (“Anela”) is a consumer and the recipient of a letter alleging that she owes medical debt. Defendant AR Resources, Inc. (“ARR”), the letter sender, is a Pennsylvania collection agency that collects consumer debts. Anela brings a claim against ARR for violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) by (1) failing to effectively provide Anela with the validation notice required by 15 U.S.C. § 1692g and (2) failing to comply with 15 U.S.C. § 1692e, which prohibits debt collectors from using “any false, deceptive, or misleading representation or means in connection with the collection of any debt” and prohibits “[t]he use of any false representation or deceptive means to collect or attempt to collect any debt or to obtain information concerning a consumer.” 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692e, 1692e(10). ARR moves to dismiss the Amended Complaint. For the reasons set forth below, I will grant ARR's motion to dismiss.

         II. BACKGROUND [1]

         Anela is a consumer who resides in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. Am. Compl. ¶ 8. ARR is a Pennsylvania collection agency. Am. Compl. ¶ 9. On November 4, 2016, ARR sent a debt collection letter (“Letter”) to Anela demanding payment of the alleged medical debt. Am. Compl. ¶ 14.

         The Letter includes a validation notice as required by 15 U.S.C. § 1692g:

Unless you notify this office within 30 days from receiving this notice that you dispute the validity of this debt, or any portion thereof, this office will assume this debt is valid. If you notify this office in writing within 30 days of receiving this notice this office will: obtain verification of the debt or obtain a copy of a judgment and mail you a copy of such judgment or verification. If you request from this office in writing within 30 days after receiving this notice, this office will provide you with the name and address of the original creditor, if different from the current creditor.

Am. Compl. Ex. A.

         Anela alleges that two additional sentences, considered individually and collectively, confuse and overshadow the required statutory validation notice stated above. Am. Compl. ¶ 23.

         The first sentence (“Call Language”) states:

If you would like to pay by phone, or have any questions, please contact a representative toll-free at 866-378-0797.

Am. Compl. Ex. A.

         The second sentence (“Insurance Language”) states:

If you carry any insurance that may cover this obligation, please contact our office at the number above.

Am. Compl. Ex. A.

         III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         A. Motion to Dismiss

         In deciding a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), a court must “accept all factual allegations as true, construe the complaint in the light most favorable to the plaintiff, and determine whether, under any reasonable reading of the complaint, the plaintiff may be entitled to relief.” Phillips v. Cty. of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 233 ...


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