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What can they say on my voice mail/answering machine?

O6
Senior Contributor

Re: What can they say on my voice mail/answering machine?


@RobertEG wrote:

No one ever made any "false and extremely misleading" statement that fed court decisions below the appellate level "play no role."

They are valuable insight into the rationale of one judge, particulary relevant if you have a case before he or she. That  opinion way be read by, and subsequenty influence, decisions of others.  But it is NOT legal precedent within the federal district of that court untl affirmed on the fed appellant level.

 

Many citations are made to provisions of the FDCPA that deal primarily, and in most cases, exclusively, with obligations in communications betyween a debt collector and the specific consumer.

FDCPA 807 (11) relates only to communications between the debt collector and the consumer. Tthe OP never asserted any "mino-miranda" violation of FDCPA 807(11), and intial contact was not even an issue in the post.  Nor was the legality or any further contact.  Just, once again, the leaving of such contacts on a voice mail that could be accessed by third parties.

FDCPA 806(6) relates to telephone calls wherin the caller did not disclose their identity.  The OP stated that the caller did identify their identity.  So the issue has nothng to do with FDCPA 806(6) compliance, but only with whether this was a violation of potential third party access to their voice mail under FDCPA 805(C).

'

The one fed statute that is right on point on this issue is FDCPA 805(b).

 


This is exactly what happens when laymen try to evaluate a highly complex legal issue using a simplistic approach and fail to understand the big picture.

 

 

§ 807(11) mandates the "mini-Miranda" in any initial communication which, in turn, mandates the caller to identify themselves as CAs.  § 803(2) as defined by at least five different federal courts states that a voice mail message is a "communication" under the Act. 

 

Your haphazard and simplistic interpretation of § 805(b) considering voice mail to a residential or cellular phone belonging to the debtor as a communication with a "person other than the consumer" is not only logically and legally flawed, but precisely shot down in each and every federal court to address that issue to date.  With those kinds of odds against you, I'd suggest you avoid Las Vegas.

 

§ 806(6) mandates "meaningful disclosure of the caller’s identity.”  This has been interpreted by, again, every relevant federal court decision as requiring "meaningful disclosure of the caller’s identity.”  Meaningful disclosure, inturn, has been continually and consistently held to include the caller's identity, the complete name of their employer and the nature of the caller's business. 

 

One of the fundamental concepts that apply to the FDCPA is that the standard set by Congress is "the least sophisticated consumer" and I have seen where you fail to grasp that fundamental concept.

 

Each and every federal court to address the concept of "meaningful disclosure" have stated that the term requires "the caller must state his or her name and capacity, and disclose enough information so as not to mislead the recipient as to the purpose of the call or the reason the questions are being asked” holding that “defendant violated § 1692d(6) when its employees failed to disclose defendant’s identity and the nature of defendant’s business in the messages left on plaintiff’s answering machine.” [Hosseinazadeh v. M.R.S. Associates, Inc.].

 

The federal court in Baker vs. Allstate Financial Services held that "the meaningful disclosure required by section 1692d(6) has been made if an individual debt collector who is employed by a debt collection company accurately discloses the name of her employer and the nature of her business and conceals no more than her real name."

 

Robert, your insistence that the mere possibility of an unrelated third party outside of the debtor's family could conceivably hear the voice mail message left on the debtor's residential or personal cellular telephone is fatally flawed and without any merit whatsoever regarding OP's issue.  First of all, OP did not allege that this happened.  However, if it did happen and the person who unintentionally heard the debt collection message was outside of the debtor's immediate family, then, perhaps, the CA would be liable under § 805(b).  If and when that bridge is crossed, I'm sure the federal courts will consider the Catch 22 that CAs are in, but until then you are only offering speculation and untrained opinion. 

 

But at this particular point in time courts have agreed along the findings of the court in Joseph v. J.J. Mac Intyre Companies, L.L.C in that “as for third party communications, the legislatures’ concern in enacting these provisions about privacy violations resulting from deliberate disclosure of the debtor’s status to third parties such as the debtor’s employer has far less applicability to phone calls made to the debtor’s phone number at his or her residence for similar reasons.”[238 F. Supp.2d 1158, 1167 (N.D. Ca. 2002) at 1164]

 

Here are some very specific actual examples of CA telephone voice mails that the federal courts have found flawed and not in compliance with the Act simply because there is no meaningful disclosure as understandable to the "least sophisticated consumer":

 

"Hello, this is Thomas Hunt calling. Please have an adult contact me regarding some rather important information. This is not a sales call, however, regulations prevent me from leaving more details. You will want to contact me at 1-877-647-5945 as soon as possible. This is a toll free number. Once again this is Thomas Hunt calling and my number is 1-877-647-5945. Thank you …"

 

"This message is for Ashraf. Ashraf, my name is Clarence Davis. I have some very important information to discuss with you. I have to make a decision about a situation that concerns you. I am going to make this decision with or without your input. Contact my office right away at 877-647-5945, extension 3619. Failure to return my call will result in a decision making process that you will not be a part of …"

 

"This message is for Ashraf. Ashraf my name is Clarence Davis. I have some very important information to discuss with you in reference to a file that has been forwarded to my office that involves you personally. Contact my office right away at 877-647-5945, extension 3618. Failure to return my call will result in a decision making process that you will not be a part of …"

 

"This message is for Ashraf. Ashraf, my name is Clarence Davis. I have some very important information to discuss with you. There has been a trial that has been sent to my office that I’m sure you’re not aware of but involves you personally. [FN4]. Contact me right away at 877-647-5945, extension 3618. Failure to return my call will result in a decision making process that you will not be a part of …"

 

"This very important message is being left for Griff Baker. My name is April. I'm calling from Allstate's corporate office and my call today is in reference to case number 3434109. If I could possibly speak with you in regards to this case by 5:30 pm Eastern today. This toll- free number is 1-866-548-1877.  It is very urgent that you give us a call prior to 4:30 as this matter has become time sensitive. And we must proceed with or without further complications.  Again the number here is 1-866-548-1877."

 

"This message is for Griff Baker. This is Mike Reed calling you from the corporate office of the [sic] Allstate regarding a matter pending in the State of Minnesota we need to speak to you about. Reach me toll free at 1-866-508-1877. Return my call please refer to file number 3434109. That's 343-13-4109."

 

"This [m]essage is for Griff Baker, my name is Jerry Stevens from Allstate. Give me a call 1-866-508-1877 my extension, 1509. Sir give me a call, we've received documentation and it is very important that you do call me back.  Refer to your case number 3434109[.] Thank you."

 

"This urgent message is being left for Griff Baker. My name is Nate Jones and I am calling in reference to case number 343410-9. This matter is currently pending in the State of Minnesota. If you'd like to address the situation you can do so returning my call toll free at 866-508-1877, ask to speak to Nate Jones and refer to your case number. Case 0:07-cv-02579-JNE-JJG Document 36 Filed 04/29/2008 Page 2 of 143."

 

"This very important message is for Griff Baker, my name is Jerry Stevens from Allstate. Give me a call 1-866-508-1877 my extension is 1509. Sir give me a call we've received documentation and it is very important that you do call me back. Extension 1509, refer to your case number 3434109[.] Thank you."  


I don't see how it could be any easier to understand, but, again, if it makes you happy, Robert; Yes, the world is flat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IAALBNYL
Message 11 of 12
MarineVietVet
Moderator Emeritus

Re: What can they say on my voice mail/answering machine?

Let's all please try to stay focused on the subject. Having different opinions does not mean we can't be respectful of one another. 

 

 

Message 12 of 12
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