WebRecon Stats for Jan 2019: Out of the Gate

Quick analysis: Well, it looks like 2019 begins with a screech out of the gates. In January, all three of the main consumer statutes we track (FDCPA, TCPA, FCRA) were up significantly over December 2018. But only FCRA was also up over January 2018 as well.

FDCPA was up +25.8% over Dec, but down -11.9% compared to January 2018.
TCPA was up +35.4% over Dec, but down -4.1% compared to January 2018.
FCRA was up +8.8% over Dec, and also up +12.6% compared to January 2018.

What does it mean? The year started fairly strong for consumer litigation, but probably not strong enough to break recent trends.

BBB and BCFP complaints both dramatically increased in 2018, but have so far started the year fairly slowly (ignore the current numbers in our grid, the numbers for those two categories are never really all in until 30-60 days after the end of the month).

In other news, putative class actions were pretty typical last month with 25% of FDCPA, 28.1% of TCPA and 4.9% of FCRA lawsuits filed that way.

About 33% of all plaintiffs who filed suit last month had filed at least once before.

And finally, Delaware FCRA attorney Antranig Garibian represented more consumers than anyone else in January (51). Since there has only been one month so far, he takes the crown for most lawsuits of the year as well.

Is your collection agency or call center protected
against serial litigants? Read more Here!

 

Current Month: Previous Month: Previous
Year:
Year to Date: Year to
Date Comp:
Jan 01, 2019
Jan 31, 2019
Dec 01, 2018
Dec 31, 2018
Jan 01, 2018
Jan 31, 2018
Jan 01, 2019
Jan 31, 2019
Jan 01, 2018
Jan 31, 2018
BBB  1966 2992 -34.3% 5701 -65.5% 1966 5701 -65.5%
BCFP  3108 3309 -6.1% 4996 -37.8% 3108 4996 -37.8%
FDCPA  717 570 25.8% 814 -11.9% 717 814 -11.9%
FCRA  348 320 8.8% 309 12.6% 348 309 12.6%
TCPA  302 223 35.4% 315 -4.1% 302 315 -4.1%

 

Complaint Statistics:

1966 consumers filed BBB complaints, 3108 consumers filed BCFP complaints, and about 1191 consumers filed lawsuits under consumer statutes from Jan 01, 2019 to Jan 31, 2019.

  • 1966 BBB Complaints
  • 3108 BCFP Complaints
  • 717 FDCPA, 179 Class Action (25.0%)
  • 302 TCPA, 85 Class Action (28.1%)
  • 348 FCRA, 17 Class Action (4.9%)

Litigation Summary (scroll down for BBB and BCFP data):

  • Of those cases, there were about 1191 unique plaintiffs (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit).
  • Of those plaintiffs, about 395, or (33%), had sued under consumer statutes before.
  • Combined, those plaintiffs have filed about 2432 lawsuits since 2001
  • Actions were filed in 158 different US District Court branches.
  • About 765 different collection firms and creditors were sued.

The top courts where lawsuits were filed:

  • 81 Lawsuits: Illinois Northern District Court – Chicago
  • 51 Lawsuits: Delaware District Court – Wilmington
  • 48 Lawsuits: Florida Middle District Court – Tampa
  • 46 Lawsuits: New York Eastern District Court – Brooklyn
  • 39 Lawsuits: Georgia Northern District Court – Atlanta
  • 39 Lawsuits: New York Eastern District Court – Central Islip
  • 38 Lawsuits: Indiana Southern District Court – Indianapolis
  • 37 Lawsuits: New Jersey District Court – Newark
  • 36 Lawsuits: Nevada District Court – Las Vegas
  • 35 Lawsuits: California Central District Court – Western Division – Los Angeles

The most active consumer attorneys were:

  • Representing 51 Consumers: ANTRANIG N GARIBIAN
  • Representing 33 Consumers: NATHAN CHARLES VOLHEIM
  • Representing 30 Consumers: TAXIARCHIS HATZIDIMITRIADIS
  • Representing 29 Consumers: CRAIG B SANDERS
  • Representing 27 Consumers: YAAKOV SAKS
  • Representing 25 Consumers: DAVID SCOTT KLAIN
  • Representing 25 Consumers: DAVID H KRIEGER
  • Representing 22 Consumers: SERGEI LEMBERG
  • Representing 22 Consumers: DAVID M BARSHAY
  • Representing 20 Consumers: JOHN D BLYTHIN

Statistics Year to Date:
1180 total lawsuits for 2019, including:

  • 717 FDCPA
  • 348 FCRA
  • 302 TCPA

Number of Unique Plaintiffs for 2019: 1191 (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit)

The most active consumer attorneys of the year:

  • Representing 51 Consumers: ANTRANIG N GARIBIAN
  • Representing 33 Consumers: NATHAN CHARLES VOLHEIM
  • Representing 30 Consumers: TAXIARCHIS HATZIDIMITRIADIS
  • Representing 29 Consumers: CRAIG B SANDERS
  • Representing 27 Consumers: YAAKOV SAKS
  • Representing 25 Consumers: DAVID SCOTT KLAIN
  • Representing 25 Consumers: DAVID H KRIEGER
  • Representing 22 Consumers: SERGEI LEMBERG
  • Representing 22 Consumers: DAVID M BARSHAY
  • Representing 20 Consumers: JOHN D BLYTHIN

Is your collection agency or call center protected
against serial litigants? Read more Here!

 

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BBB Complaint Statistics:

There were a total of 1966 BBB complaints from Jan 01, 2019 to Jan 31, 2019. That is down -34.3% from last month.

The types of companies being complained about were:

  • 1342 collections-agencies (68%)
  • 527 banks (27%)
  • 97 credit+reporting (5%)

The categories of complaints filed were:

  • 1373 Billing/Collection Issues (70%)
  • 526 Problems with Product/Service (27%)
  • 32 Delivery Issues (2%)
  • 29 Advertising/Sales Issues (1%)
  • 6 Guarantee/Warranty Issues (0%)

The dispositions of these complaints are:

  • 1320 The business addressed the issues within the complaint, but the consumer either a) did not accept the response, OR b) did not notify BBB as to their satisfaction. (67%)
  • 526 The complainant verified the issue was resolved to their satisfaction. (27%)
  • 77 The business failed to respond to the dispute. (4%)
  • 41 BBB is unable to locate the business. (2%)
  • 2 The business responded to the dispute but failed to make a good faith effort to resolve it. (0%)

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BCFP Complaint Statistics:

There were 3108 complaints filed against debt collectors from Jan 01, 2019 to Jan 31, 2019.

Total number of debt collectors complained about: 718

The types of debt behind the complaints were:

  • 871 Other debt (28%)
  • 700 I do not know (23%)
  • 663 Credit card debt (21%)
  • 494 Medical debt (16%)
  • 122 Auto debt (4%)
  • 84 Payday loan debt (3%)
  • 72 Mortgage debt (2%)
  • 54 Federal student loan debt (2%)
  • 48 Private student loan debt (2%)

Here is a breakdown of complaints:

  • 1583 Attempts to collect debt not owed (51%)
  • 623 Written notification about debt (20%)
  • 296 Took or threatened to take negative or legal action (10%)
  • 280 Communication tactics (9%)
  • 250 False statements or representation (8%)
  • 76 Threatened to contact someone or share information improperly (2%)

The top five subissues were:

  • 763 Debt is not yours (25%)
  • 474 Debt was result of identity theft (15%)
  • 420 Didnt receive enough information to verify debt (14%)
  • 287 Debt was paid (9%)
  • 204 Attempted to collect wrong amount (7%)

The top states complaints were filed from are:

  • 521 Complaints: TX
  • 348 Complaints: CA
  • 323 Complaints: FL
  • 164 Complaints: GA
  • 151 Complaints: NY
  • 97 Complaints: IL
  • 89 Complaints: PA
  • 89 Complaints: NC
  • 85 Complaints: OH
  • 83 Complaints: AZ

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

  • 2397 Closed with explanation (77%)
  • 347 In progress (11%)
  • 268 Closed with non-monetary relief (9%)
  • 78 Untimely response (3%)
  • 18 Closed with monetary relief (1%)

This includes 2997 (96%) timely responses to complaints, and 111 (4%) untimely responses.