Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Debt Collection Complaints Decline; Consumer Litigation Filings Slow Compared to May

Monthly debt collection complaints continued to decline in June, while consumer litigation filings fluctuated, according to the latest Debt Collection Litigation and CFPB Complaint Statistics report from WebRecon.
“There is very little comprehensible pattern to be discerned, beyond the fact that the overarching pattern seems to be pretty steady in spite of monthly ups and downs,” WebRecon CEO Jack Gordon said in the report.
Debt collection complaints declined 26.1 percent from 4,102 in May to 3,033 in June, according to the report.
Year-to-date, there were 19,488 complaints as of the end of June 2016 compared to 23,722 in June 2017, a 21.7 percent increase, according to the report.
Similar to April and May, debt collection companies responded to a majority, 95 percent (2,884), of June 2017 complaints in a timely manner.
Of the complaints filed, 1,305 (43 percent) were about continued attempts to collect a debt not owed, 708 (23 percent) were about written notification of a debt, and 348 (11 percent) were about communication tactics, according to the report.
The top five sub-issues in debt collection complaints were:
  • Debt is not yours  (22 percent)
  • Didn’t receive enough information to verify debt (17 percent)
  • Debt was paid (12 percent)
  • Attempted to collect wrong amount (7 percent)
  • Debt was result of identity theft (6 percent)
Consumer Litigation Filings
Consumer litigation filings under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, Telephone Consumer Protection Act and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act fluctuated in June.
FDCPA filings declined 7.8 percent from 970 in May to 894 in June; FCRA filings increased 2.4 percent from 377 to 386; and TCPA filings declined 11.3 percent from 506 to 449, according to the report.
In May, FDCPA filings and TCPA filings increased, 20.7 percent and 43.5 percent respectively, compared to April,  ACA International previously reported.
Year-to-date filings in June increased except for the FDCPA, which saw a 3 percent decline from 5,419 at the end of June 2016 to 5,257 at the end of June 2017. FCRA cases increased 6.2 percent from 1,993 at the end of June 2016 to 2,117 in June this year and TCPA cases increased 3.8 percent from 2,422 to 2,515, according to the report.
WebRecon also reports that in June there were about 1,477 unique plaintiffs (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit.) Of those plaintiffs, about 472 (or 32 percent) had sued under consumer statutes before.

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