United States District Court, E.D. Washington
ORDER ON CROSS MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
THE COURT are the Parties' Cross Motions for Summary
Judgment (ECF Nos. 27; 32). These motions were heard with
oral argument on June 26, 2016. The Court has reviewed the
record and the completed briefing, heard from counsel and is
fully informed. For the reasons discussed below,
Defendants' Motion (ECF No. 27) is
granted and Plaintiff's Motion (ECF No.
32) is denied.
case concerns a letter sent in an attempt to collect on an
old debt. Plaintiff “allegedly incurred an obligation
to Chase Bank” sometime prior to 2009. ECF No. 1 at 8,
¶ 6.1. Subsequently, Chase Bank sold the debt to
Defendants of which Midland Credit Management, Inc.
then sought to collect on the account by sending a letter to
Plaintiff in March of 2017. ECF No. 1 at 8-9, ¶¶
6.4-6.6. Plaintiff takes issue with this
letter from Midland Credit Management, Inc. consists of two
pages. See ECF No. 1 at 16-17. The first page
prominently displays a box with a heading “CALL U.S.
TODAY”. Below the heading, the letter states
“Available Payment Options”: (1) “40%
OFF”, (2) “20% OFF Over 6 Months”, and (3)
“Monthly Payments As Low As: $50 per month Call today
to discuss you options and get more details.” Below the
options, the letter includes another header, “Benefits
of Paying Your Debt” and lists the following:
- Save $741.35 if you pay by 04-27-2017 -
- Put this debt behind you -
- No. more communication on this account -
- Peace of mind -
the signature line, the letter includes the following
The law limits how long you can be sued on a debt and how
long a debt can appear on your credit report. Due to the age
of this debt, we will not sue you for it or report payment or
nonpayment of it to a credit bureau.
ECF No. 1 at 16.
did not make any payments on the debt nor did she promise to
pay on the debt. Instead, on February 27, 2018, Plaintiff
filed this suit, personally, and on behalf of others
similarly situated, asserting one claim for a violation of
the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), 15 U.S.C.
§ 1692e. ECF No. 1 at 12-13, ¶¶ 7.1-7.6.
Plaintiff complains that Defendants violated the FDCPA by (1)
“falsely representing the legal status of the
debt” and (2) using “false representations and/or
deceptive means to collect or attempt to collect a
debt.” ECF No. 1 at 13, ¶¶ 7.4-7.5. Plaintiff
requests actual and statutory damages, along with costs and
attorney fees. ECF No. 1 at 13, ¶ 7.6.
filed a Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 27) and
Plaintiff filed a Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 32).
These Motions are now before the Court.
movant is entitled to summary judgment if “there is no
genuine dispute as to any material fact and that the movant
is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A fact is “material” if it
might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law.
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248
(1986). An issue is “genuine” where the evidence
is such that a reasonable jury could find in favor of the
non-moving party. Id. The moving party bears the
“burden of establishing the nonexistence of a
‘genuine issue.'” Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 330 (1986). “This burden
has two distinct components: an initial burden of production,
which shifts to the nonmoving party if satisfied by the
moving party; and an ultimate burden of persuasion, which
always remains on the moving party.” Id.
Rule 56(c), the parties must support assertions by:
“citing to particular parts of the record” or
“showing that the materials cited do not establish the
absence or presence of a genuine dispute, or that an adverse
party cannot produce admissible evidence to support the
fact.” Only admissible evidence may be considered.
Orr v. Bank of America, NT & SA, 285 F.3d 764
(9th Cir. 2002). The nonmoving party may not defeat a
properly supported motion with mere allegations or denials in
the pleadings. Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. at
248. The “evidence of the non-movant is to be believed,
and all justifiable inferences are to be ...