Debt Collection Litigation & CFPB Complaint Statistics, May 2014

Quick analysis: May was a light month all around for consumer complaints, with the notable exception of FCRA complaints which had a slight increase of 3.4%.

CFPB complaints (down 15.8%), FDCPA (down 15.4%) and surprisingly TCPA (down 8.3%) all showed declines compared to the prior month, though FCRA and TCPA litigation are both still up very significantly over this time last year (up 11% and 32.1%, respectively).

FDCPA litigation continues its gradual slide, down 19.3% over this time last year.

Comparisons: Current Period: Previous Period: Previous Year Comp:
  May 01 – 31, 2014 Apr 01 – 30, 2014 May 01 – 31, 2013
 
CFPB Complaints  3188 3693 -15.8%
 
FDCPA lawsuits  774 893 -15.4% 812 -4.9%
FCRA lawsuits  206 199 3.4% 153 25.7%
TCPA lawsuits  216 234 -8.3% 132 38.9%
 
YTD CFPB Complaints  17114
YTD FDCPA lawsuits  4058 4841 -19.3%
YTD FCRA lawsuits  1003 893 11.0%
YTD TCPA lawsuits  1118 759 32.1%

Litigation Statistics:

3188 consumers filed CFPB complaints against debt collectors and about 1122 consumers filed lawsuits under consumer statutes in May 2014. Here is an approximate breakdown:

  • 3188 CFPB Complaints
  • 774 FDCPA
  • 216 TCPA
  • 206 FCRA

Litigation Summary (scroll down for CFPB data):

  • Of those cases, there were about 1122 unique plaintiffs (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit).
  • Of those plaintiffs, about 386, or (34%), had sued under consumer statutes before.
  • Combined, those plaintiffs have filed about 2022 lawsuits since 2001
  • Actions were filed in 156 different US District Court branches.
  • About 1060 different collection firms and creditors were sued.

The top courts where lawsuits were filed:

  • 59 Lawsuits: Illinois Northern District Court – Chicago
  • 54 Lawsuits: New York Eastern District Court – Brooklyn
  • 46 Lawsuits: Pennsylvania Eastern District Court – Philadelphia
  • 46 Lawsuits: California Central District Court – Los Angeles
  • 40 Lawsuits: Colorado District Court – Denver
  • 30 Lawsuits: Florida Middle District Court – Tampa
  • 29 Lawsuits: California Southern District Court – San Diego
  • 28 Lawsuits: Virginia Eastern District Court – Alexandria
  • 27 Lawsuits: Indiana Southern District Court – Indianapolis
  • 22 Lawsuits: Georgia Northern District Court – Atlanta

The most active consumer attorneys were:

  • Representing 30 Consumers: SERGEI LEMBERG
  • Representing 29 Consumers: ADAM JON FISHBEIN
  • Representing 24 Consumers: THOMAS RAY BREEDEN
  • Representing 17 Consumers: JOHN THOMAS STEINKAMP
  • Representing 17 Consumers: DAVID MICHAEL LARSON
  • Representing 15 Consumers: SHIREEN HORMOZDI
  • Representing 15 Consumers: TODD M FRIEDMAN
  • Representing 15 Consumers: JOSHUA B SWIGART
  • Representing 15 Consumers: MICHAEL ANTHONY EADES
  • Representing 14 Consumers: STUART A EISENBERG

Statistics Year to Date:
5293 total lawsuits for 2014, including:

  • 4058 FDCPA
  • 1003 FCRA
  • 1118 TCPA

Number of Unique Plaintiffs for 2014: 5360 (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit)

The most active consumer attorneys of the year:

  • Representing 281 Consumers: SERGEI LEMBERG
  • Representing 118 Consumers: DAVID MICHAEL LARSON
  • Representing 92 Consumers: JOHN THOMAS STEINKAMP
  • Representing 89 Consumers: MICHAEL ANTHONY EADES
  • Representing 81 Consumers: ADAM JON FISHBEIN
  • Representing 80 Consumers: TODD M FRIEDMAN
  • Representing 66 Consumers: DAVID J PHILIPPS
  • Representing 63 Consumers: ANGIE K ROBERTSON
  • Representing 61 Consumers: JOSHUA B SWIGART
  • Representing 60 Consumers: ERIKSON M DAVIS

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CFPB Complaint Statistics:

There were 3188 complaints filed against debt collectors in May 2014.

Total number of debt collectors complained about: 701

The types of debt behind the complaints were:

  • 834 Other (phone, health club, etc.) (26%)
  • 704 (22%)
  • 648 Credit card (20%)
  • 321 Medical (10%)
  • 282 Payday loan (9%)
  • 149 Mortgage (5%)
  • 104 Auto (3%)
  • 76 Federal student loan (2%)
  • 70 Non-federal student loan (2%)

Here is a breakdown of complaints:

  • 1234 Cont’d attempts collect debt not owed (39%)
  • 632 Communication tactics (20%)
  • 571 Disclosure verification of debt (18%)
  • 285 Improper contact or sharing of info (9%)
  • 234 False statements or representation (7%)
  • 232 Taking/threatening an illegal action (7%)

The top five subissues were:

  • 771 Debt is not mine (24%)
  • 409 Not given enough info to verify debt (13%)
  • 407 Frequent or repeated calls (13%)
  • 334 Debt was paid (10%)
  • 176 Attempted to collect wrong amount (6%)

The top states complaints were filed from are:

  • 454 Complaints: CA
  • 320 Complaints: TX
  • 282 Complaints: FL
  • 176 Complaints: NY
  • 131 Complaints: GA
  • 120 Complaints: PA
  • 114 Complaints: IL
  • 105 Complaints: OH
  • 98 Complaints: NJ
  • 93 Complaints: VA

The status of the month’s complaints are as follows:

  • 2211 Closed with explanation (69%)
  • 546 Closed with non-monetary relief (17%)
  • 187 In progress (6%)
  • 130 Closed (4%)
  • 60 Untimely response (2%)
  • 54 Closed with monetary relief (2%)

This includes 3032 (95%) timely responses to complaints, and 156 (5%) untimely responses

Of the company responses, consumers accepted 2659 (83%) of them, and disputed 529 (17%) of them

The top five days for complaints were:

  • 179 Complaints: Wed, 05/07/2014
  • 169 Complaints: Mon, 05/19/2014
  • 168 Complaints: Wed, 05/14/2014
  • 165 Complaints: Tue, 05/13/2014
  • 158 Complaints: Tue, 05/06/2014