and Submitted June 5, 2017 Pasadena, California
from the United States District Court for the District of
Nevada Jennifer A. Dorsey, District Judge, Presiding D.C. No.
Gupta (argued), Richard J. Rubin, and Neil K. Sawhney, Gupta
Wessler PLLC, Washington, D.C.; Keren E. Gesund, Gesund &
Pailet LLC, Las Vegas, Nevada; for Plaintiff-Appellant.
Patrick J. Reilly (argued), Holland & Hart LLP, Las
Vegas, Nevada, for Defendants-Appellees.
Before: Sidney R. Thomas, Chief Judge, Stephen Reinhardt,
Circuit Judge, and Edward R. Korman, [*] District Judge.
Debt Collection Practices Act
panel reversed the district court's dismissal of an
action brought against a debt collector under the Fair Debt
Collection Practices Act.
panel held that a debt collector cannot avoid liability under
the FDCPA by obtaining the debtor's lawsuit through a
state court writ of execution. The panel concluded that such
a procedure frustrates the Act's purpose and is thus
conflict-preempted. The panel remanded the case for further
THOMAS, CHIEF JUDGE
debt collector avoid liability under the Federal Fair Debt
Collection Practices Act by obtaining the debtor's
lawsuit through a writ of execution? We conclude that such a
procedure frustrates the Act's purpose and is thus
Arellano was overdue on a small amount of medical
debt-$371.89 to be precise. A private collection agency,
Clark County Collection Services, sent her a letter about it.
Included with the letter was a summons and state justice
court complaint seeking collection of the debt. The complaint
itself stated that Arellano could "[d]ispute the
validity of this debt" within 30 days, but that failing
to do so would result in a presumption of validity. However,
separately, in small print, the summons indicated that to
defend the lawsuit, Arellano must file a formal written
response with the court within 20 days.
did not file a response, and the collection agency obtained a
default judgment against her in justice court for $793.39.
The debt had doubled in the intervening month because it ...