Chase Receivables Unlawful Balance Billing Collection FDCPA Class Action

Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), third-party debt collectors may not misrepresent to a consumer the status of a debt. The complaint for this class action alleges that Chase Receivables did exactly that when it tried to collect a consumer debt that involved improper balance billing.

The class for this action is all consumers to whom Chase Receivables sent a collection letter substantially and materially similar to the one sent to the plaintiff in this case, where the letter was sent between February 12, 2019 and the present.

Congress passed the FDCPA to try to protect consumers from the abusive conduct and misrepresentations some debt collectors used to try to pry payments out of consumers.

In this case, the debt was allegedly incurred by plaintiff Yeshica Viquez Rivera for personal, family, or household purposes. When the debt was in default, it was assigned or otherwise transferred to Chase for collection.

Chase then sent Rivera a debt collection letter dated September 18, 2019. A copy of this letter is attached to the complaint as Exhibit 1. The creditor shown in the collection letter is NYU Langone Physician Services. In reference to the letter, the complaint says, “[Rivera] has the interest and right to be free from misleading communications from [Chase]. As set forth herein, [Chase] deprived [Rivera] of this right.”

How is the letter misleading? The complaint claims that Rivera is enrolled in a New York Medicare Advantage program. According to the complaint, “Other than for co-pays, Medicare Advantage patients may not be balance-billed.” The amounts billed to Rivera, the complaint claims, are not co-pays but “unlawful balance billing.”

The complaint says, “By sending a collection letter to [Rivera] to collect on the alleged Debt, [Chase] misrepresented the status of the debt as collectible, when it was not.” This would mean, the complaint says, that Chase violated sections 1692e and 1692f of the FDCPA.

The standard used to determine whether a communication is misleading or confusing is the “least sophisticated consumer.” The complaint quotes a previous case as saying that “the test is how the least sophisticated consumer—one not having the astuteness of a ‘Philadelphia lawyer’ or even the sophistication of the average, every day, common consumer—understands the notice he or she receives.” If the statements in the debt collection letter are “reasonably susceptible to an inaccurate reading” (quotes the complaint from another previous case), then they are in violation of the FDCPA.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Chase Receivables Unlawful Balance Billing Collection FDCPA Complaint

February 12, 2020

Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), third-party debt collectors may not misrepresent to a consumer the status of a debt. The complaint for this class action alleges that Chase Receivables did exactly that when it tried to collect a consumer debt that involved improper Medicare Advantage balance billing.

Chase Receivables Unlawful Balance Billing Collection FDCPA Complaint

Case Event History

Chase Receivables Unlawful Balance Billing Collection FDCPA Complaint

February 12, 2020

Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), third-party debt collectors may not misrepresent to a consumer the status of a debt. The complaint for this class action alleges that Chase Receivables did exactly that when it tried to collect a consumer debt that involved improper Medicare Advantage balance billing.

Chase Receivables Unlawful Balance Billing Collection FDCPA Complaint
Tags: FDCPA, Misleading or Confusing Debt Collection Letter, Unlawful Debt Collection