A report and recommendation from a magistrate judge means that Butto and Houser v. Collecto, Inc. (U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, Case No. 2:10-cv-02906(ADS)(AKT)) is one step closer to receiving class certification. Lemberg & Associates is representing Victoria Butto, who are suing Collecto, Inc. (doing business as EOS/CCA) for unlawful and predatory debt collection practices. The suit alleges that Verizon Wireless turned over Ms. Butto’s debt to Collecto for collection. Collecto sent her a debt collection letter that added collection fees to the amount owed. Collecto had made arrangements with Verizon that they would receive their payments when Collecto had successfully collected on the debts. If Collecto didn’t collect on the debt, they weren’t entitled to any fees. Because no monies had been recovered at the time Collecto sent the letter, it was not entitled to its collection fees. The suit alleges that Collecto therefore misled Ms. Butto by creating a false impression that they incurred collection fees and owed that money, in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
The Report and Recommendation filed by the court recommended that the presiding judge grand class certification to the following: New York consumers who were sent a collection letter by Collecto, Inc. DBA EOS/CCA for a Verizon Wireless account, which included a collection fee for Verizon Wireless service that hadn’t yet been incurred when the letter was sent.