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08.08.16 by Andrew Shafer

Multiple "Initial Communications"

On July 20, 2016, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals resolved an open question about the scope of the validation requirement in 15 U.S.C. 1692g.  The statute requires certain information be provided to consumers in any “initial” communication. The question is whether an “initial” communication can happen more than once.  Short Answer: yes it can. This case establishes a clear rule: when successive debt collectors attempt to collect the same debt from a consumer, each debt collector must provide its own validation notice to the consumer. See, Hernandez v. Williams, Zinman & Parham PC, 14-15672, ___ F.3d _____, 2016 WL 3913445 (9th Cir. July 20, 2016)