Quick analysis: Quick analysis: Consumer Litigation Down a Bit, Up a Bit in Feb 2017

Consumer litigation last month was mostly flat for FDCPA (up .7%), down a lot for FCRA (-36.3%) and down a bit for TCPA (-6.7%). While that seems like a good trend, it did not change the fact that all three categories were still up over the same period of time in 2016 (FDCPA +5.6%, FCRA +23.6%, TCPA +5.3%)

So, while it is way too early in the year to try to draw a conclusion, it is safe to say that litigation is going to stay unpredictable and (it seems likely) at approximately the same levels we have seen it over the last few years.

CFPB complaints, on the other hand, seem to have exploded in 2017. While only up nominally from January, they are up a whopping 19.6% from this month last year and an even more impressive 22.1% YTD. Maybe people are rushing to get their complaints on the record while the agency is still in it’s current form?

Back to litigation, putative class actions are about normal with 17.9% of FDCPA, 24% of TCPA and only 9.1% of FCRA lawsuits filed that way.

About 34% of all plaintiffs who filed in February had filed at least once before.

And finally, California attorney Todd M. Friedman retakes the crown for representing the most consumer plaintiffs (37) in January and the most year-to-date (95).

Comparisons: Current Period: Previous Period: Previous Year Comp:
Feb 01, 2017
Feb 28, 2017
Jan 01, 2017
Jan 31, 2017
Feb 01, 2016
Feb 28, 2016
CFPB Complaints  3738 3704 0.9% 3126 19.6%
FDCPA lawsuits  828 822 0.7% 775 6.8%
FCRA lawsuits  265 416 -36.3% 268 -1.1%
TCPA lawsuits  375 402 -6.7% 378 -0.8%
YTD CFPB Complaints  7442 6096 22.1%
YTD FDCPA lawsuits  1650 1562 5.6%
YTD FCRA lawsuits  681 551 23.6%
YTD TCPA lawsuits  777 738 5.3%

 

Complaint Statistics:

3738 consumers filed CFPB complaints against debt collectors and about 1300 consumers filed lawsuits under consumer statutes from Feb 01, 2017 to Feb 28, 2017. Here is an approximate breakdown:

  • 3738 CFPB Complaints
  • 828 FDCPA, 148 Class Action (17.9%)
  • 375 TCPA, 90 Class Action (24.0%)
  • 265 FCRA, 24 Class Action (9.1%)

Litigation Summary (scroll down for CFPB data):

  • Of those cases, there were about 1300 unique plaintiffs (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit).
  • Of those plaintiffs, about 448, or (34%), had sued under consumer statutes before.
  • Combined, those plaintiffs have filed about 2527 lawsuits since 2001
  • Actions were filed in 156 different US District Court branches.
  • About 795 different collection firms and creditors were sued.

The top courts where lawsuits were filed:

  • 111 Lawsuits: Illinois Northern District Court – Chicago
  • 65 Lawsuits: California Central District Court – Los Angeles
  • 65 Lawsuits: New York Eastern District Court – Brooklyn
  • 61 Lawsuits: Georgia Northern District Court – Atlanta
  • 49 Lawsuits: Pennsylvania Eastern District Court – Philadelphia
  • 43 Lawsuits: California Southern District Court – San Diego
  • 42 Lawsuits: Florida Middle District Court – Tampa
  • 35 Lawsuits: New York Eastern District Court – Central Islip
  • 31 Lawsuits: Florida Southern District Court – Fort Lauderdale
  • 27 Lawsuits: Indiana Southern District Court – Indianapolis

The most active consumer attorneys were:

  • Representing 37 Consumers: TODD M FRIEDMAN
  • Representing 34 Consumers: MATTHEW THOMAS BERRY
  • Representing 31 Consumers: CRAIG B SANDERS
  • Representing 30 Consumers: AHMAD TAYSEER SULAIMAN
  • Representing 28 Consumers: SERGEI LEMBERG
  • Representing 27 Consumers: ADRIAN ROBERT BACON
  • Representing 24 Consumers: NATHAN CHARLES VOLHEIM
  • Representing 24 Consumers: MOHAMMED OMAR BADWAN
  • Representing 22 Consumers: TAMMY GRUDER HUSSIN
  • Representing 19 Consumers: MICHAEL JACOB WOOD

Statistics Year to Date:
2624 total lawsuits for 2017, including:

  • 1650 FDCPA
  • 681 FCRA
  • 777 TCPA

Number of Unique Plaintiffs for 2017: 2666 (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit)

The most active consumer attorneys of the year:

  • Representing 95 Consumers: TODD M FRIEDMAN
  • Representing 83 Consumers: AHMAD TAYSEER SULAIMAN
  • Representing 79 Consumers: DAVID H KRIEGER
  • Representing 71 Consumers: CRAIG B SANDERS
  • Representing 65 Consumers: MOHAMMED OMAR BADWAN
  • Representing 63 Consumers: ADRIAN ROBERT BACON
  • Representing 62 Consumers: NATHAN CHARLES VOLHEIM
  • Representing 62 Consumers: MATTHEW THOMAS BERRY
  • Representing 53 Consumers: SERGEI LEMBERG
  • Representing 47 Consumers: ELLIOT WAYNE GALE

——————————————————————————————————-
CFPB Complaint Statistics:

There were 3738 complaints filed against debt collectors from Feb 01, 2017 to Feb 28, 2017.

Total number of debt collectors complained about: 828

The types of debt behind the complaints were:

  • 1291 Other (i.e. phone, health club, etc.) (35%)
  • 685 I do not know (18%)
  • 659 Medical (18%)
  • 642 Credit card (17%)
  • 140 Payday loan (4%)
  • 105 Auto (3%)
  • 92 Mortgage (2%)
  • 72 Federal student loan (2%)
  • 52 Non-federal student loan (1%)

Here is a breakdown of complaints:

  • 1489 Contd attempts collect debt not owed (40%)
  • 1151 Disclosure verification of debt (31%)
  • 430 Communication tactics (12%)
  • 266 False statements or representation (7%)
  • 219 Improper contact or sharing of info (6%)
  • 183 Taking/threatening an illegal action (5%)

The top five subissues were:

  • 879 Not given enough info to verify debt (24%)
  • 860 Debt is not mine (23%)
  • 415 Debt was paid (11%)
  • 250 Frequent or repeated calls (7%)
  • 220 Right to dispute notice not received (6%)

The top states complaints were filed from are:

  • 453 Complaints: TX
  • 435 Complaints: CA
  • 352 Complaints: FL
  • 199 Complaints: GA
  • 173 Complaints: NY
  • 151 Complaints: IL
  • 123 Complaints: NJ
  • 114 Complaints: PA
  • 113 Complaints: TN
  • 113 Complaints: OH

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

  • 3738 (100%)

This includes 3509 (94%) timely responses to complaints, and 229 (6%) untimely responses.

Of the company responses, consumers accepted 0 (%) of them, disputed 514 (14%) of them, and 3224 (86%) were N\A.

The top five days for complaints were:

  • 219 Complaints: Fri, 02/03/2017
  • 203 Complaints: Wed, 02/15/2017
  • 193 Complaints: Tue, 02/07/2017
  • 176 Complaints: Thu, 02/09/2017
  • 171 Complaints: Fri, 02/10/2017

 

API Access


We offer two powerful APIs to businesses that communicate with consumers:

  • The primary Litigious Consumer Scrub uses a combination of name, geography (and optionally SSN) to identify consumers who have filed lawsuits in the past.
  • The Litigious Consumer Phone Scrub pulls every phone number from our proprietary database of litigants and runs your phones against ours.

These APIs allow you to check your data against our database on the fly. Clients love using this to handle risk management without missing a beat in their daily workflow.

Workers Comp Scrub


Workers Comp-inspired FDCPA lawsuits are growing aggressively, particularly in Florida. Only WebRecon can tell you who in your database may have a Florida Worker’s Comp case filed that could trigger litigation against you.

You can’t stop 100% of all lawsuits, but if you collect medical in Florida and you don’t have a process in place to show the court that you have a way to check every file against the Workers Comp database, then you have lost the case before it even begins.

Knock these suits out of the park with the Workers Comp Scrub.

Our Monthly Client Newsletter with The Litigant Hotsheet


Anyone can get our guest newsletter, but only clients get the version with the Litigant Hotsheet –  identifying the most active consumer Plaintiffs filing suit in jurisdictions around the country each month. Grab a coffee, shut your door and open your database to make sure you are doing all you can to stay safe.

Individual Vendor Consumer Complaint Search


Just like Vendor Monitoring, but without the monitoring. Search any business’s history of consumer complaints (Litigation, CFPB, BBB, State AG) with the click of a button! Great for on-the-fly gut checks of the companies you do business with.

Vendor Monitoring


Through vicarious liability, you can be held accountable for the bad behavior of your vendors. If they abuse consumers, for all intents and purposes, so do you. This is a big freakin’ deal!

But fear not, friend. WebRecon can track consumer litigation, CFPB, BBB and State AG Office complaints against the companies you do business with.

When a new complaint of any kind is filed against any of the companies you are monitoring, we’ll automatically push a report out to you with all of the publicly available details so you can react accordingly and if necessary, protect your interests.

The Litigious Consumer Phone Scrub


Would you knowingly dial a number attached to a consumer with a history of litigation? Of course not.

But thousands of companies do just that, every single day. If you’d like to know who they are, simply review the court dockets. They are the ones getting sued the most.

Sure, you can stop dialing consumers. But your marketing and operations teams might not be too excited about that plan.

Another idea? Identify the consumers most likely to sue you, based on previous litigation histories, and just don’t call them.

Identify high-risk phones quickly & easily, before you expose yourself to unnecessary risk.

Litigation Context Search


This is really cool.

Our primary search engine is really designed to search for parties to litigation. Need to know more about a consumer plaintiff? That’s easy. Defendant? Check. Lawyer? No problem.

But if you need to find all 1099C lawsuits filed in July 2020… not so much.

Which is why we developed the Context Search. We have pulled out and indexed the full text from over 140k consumer lawsuits and made them available to you in a search engine, with more than 1000 new lawsuits added each month. Use it to search the text of filed litigation so you can easily identify those hard-to-define trends and cases worth following.

Individual Search Engine


Instantly and easily search our proprietary database for any lawsuit participant – Plaintiff, Defendant or Attorney.

In the results, we’ll show you the full consumer litigation history of any participant, including the “docket data” (who, what, why, where, when) and – in many cases – we can even provide a copy of their actual filed lawsuits.

You can also search by phone, date range, federal/state, class action, court, statute, etc. We offer a ton of flexibility to get you the exact search result you are looking for.

The Litigant Alert Ongoing Monitoring Process


Just like our one-time batch process, but without the whole “one time” thing.

When one of your consumers files new litigation against anyone in the future, you should be the first to know. Our monitoring service can make that happen.

WebRecon can monitor your entire database (or any segment of it) for future instances of consumer litigation filed by the very consumers you are working with, right now!

It is simple to add new consumers to the watchlist, remove inactive accounts, download full reports, etc.

Best of all, we only charge you for the volume of your monitoring database – not the frequency of the searches. Search daily, weekly, every Tuesday and Friday, the 15th of each month, whatever – it is totally up to you! You won’t pay a penny more.

The Litigant Alert One-Time Batch Process


This is our flagship service. Find out why hundreds of companies won’t contact any consumers before running them through WebRecon’s Litigant Alert.

This process identifies consumers with a history of litigation quickly & easily. If they have ever filed lawsuits under FDCPA, TCPA, FCRA or similar statutes, you’ll find out here. 

WebRecon’s proprietary database is simply the most comprehensive collection of dangerous consumer litigation data in existence. 

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