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Krug v. Focus Receivables Management

May 11, 2010

DELORES KRUG, ET AL., PLAINTIFFS,
v.
FOCUS RECEIVABLES MANAGEMENT, LLC, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Irenas, Senior District Judge

OPINION

Plaintiffs Dolores Krug, Bruce Huffman, Donald Marson, and Jonathan Supler, bring this putative class action lawsuit against Focus Receivables Management, LLC ("Focus"), alleging that Focus violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692 et seq. Focus moves to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), and moves to dismiss the class action allegations. For the reasons that follow, the Motion will be denied without prejudice as to the class action allegations, and denied with prejudice in all other respects.

I.

The Complaint alleges that at various times throughout 2008 and 2009, Focus attempted to collect debts from each individual Plaintiff by leaving them several telephonic voicemail messages. Each of the alleged messages are similar. Examples include:

C "'Hello, please contact Julie Lewis at 866-918- 2469 regarding a personal business matter. Again, that number is 866-918-2469. Thank you.'" (Compl. ¶ 29)

C "'This message is for-- Bruce Huffman. This is Miss Mack, I am requesting a call back from you today. You can contact my office toll-free, 1-888-379-9266; my direct extension is 2001. Again, it is imperative that you do contact my office today. This is not a sales or solicitation call, contact my office, 1-888-379-9266.'" (Compl. ¶ 37)

C "'Please call Ashley Boyle at 1-877-623-6287. Once again, my number is 1-877-623-6287. Thank you.'" (Compl. ¶ 47)

C "'Please contact the office of Michelle Murray. I can be reached at 1-800-514-4778. This is regarding an important business matter. Again, contact my office at 1-800-514-4778. Thank you.'" (Compl. ¶ 56)

None of the alleged messages include the words "debt," "collect," or other similar words.

Plaintiffs assert that these messages violate the FDCPA because they fail to disclose (a) Focus's identity; (b) that the call is from a debt collector; and (c) "the purpose or nature of the communication (i.e., an attempt to collect a debt)." (Compl. ¶ 17)

As noted above, Focus moves to dismiss the Complaint.

II.

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) provides that a court may dismiss a complaint "for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted." In order to survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must allege facts that raise a right to relief above the speculative level. Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007); see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). While a court must accept as true all allegations in the plaintiff's complaint, and view them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff, Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 231 (3d Cir. 2008), a court is not required to accept sweeping legal conclusions cast in the form of factual allegations, unwarranted inferences, or unsupported conclusions. Morse v. Lower Merion Sch. Dist., 132 F.3d 902, 906 (3d Cir. 1997). The complaint must state sufficient facts to show that the legal allegations are not simply possible, but plausible. Phillips, 515 F.3d at ...


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