Lawsuits against collection agencies and creditors rose across the board in the July 16-31 period compared with the first half of the month, according to WebRecon LLC, a company that tracks data from U.S. district courts.
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) lawsuits soared 36% to 567 from 417. The figure also was up 14.8% compared with the year-ago (July 16-31, 2011) period. Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) lawsuits rose 18.3% to 84 in the most recent period from 71 in the July 1-15 period. That figure also was 71 in the year-ago period. Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) lawsuits were up 16.2% in the July 16-31 period, to 43 from 37 in the previous half month. TCPA cases jumped 72% compared with a year ago.
There were a total of 630 lawsuits filed under consumer statutes in the July 16-31 period, including 567 FDCPA lawsuits. Of the total cases, there were an estimated 661 unique plaintiffs, including 195 (or 30%) who previously sued under consumer statutes. Combined, these plaintiffs have filed an estimated 1,189 lawsuits since 2001. An estimated 648 different collection agencies and creditors were sued.
Year-to-date, FDCPA cases lag 5.4% behind last year's pace (6,705 through the end of July compared with 7,091 through July 31 last year. FCRA cases reached 1,349, up 61.9% and TCPA cases reached 612, up 47.1%.
The most active consumer attorney in both the recent reporting period and for the full year is Sergei Lemberg, who filed lawsuits representing 29 consumers in the latest period and has represented 200 consumers so far this year.
In the previous reporting period, WebRecon reported mixed news on consumer statute lawsuits, with some categories up and others down.