The Law Firm of Robert W. Murphy is pleased to announce that the Honorable United States District Court Judge William P. Dimitroules has granted preliminary approval of a class action (“RTR Class Action”) under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) against Real Time Resolutions (“RTR”). The Preliminary Approval Order entered on August 10, 2016 will provide for both monetary and non-monetary relief for a nationwide class of over 31, 000 consumers.

RTR is a Texas debt collector that collects inter alia defaulted mortgage debt. In the complaint in the RTR Class Action, the plaintiff, Reginald Lockhart, claimed that RTR violated 15 USC Section 1692g of the FDCPA by failing to provide proper disclosures of the rights of consumers to obtain the so-called debt “validation.” In particular, according to the complaint, RTR sent collection letters that failed to properly disclose either the amount owed or the name of the creditor to whom the debt was owed.

With respect to the class representative, RTS was attempting to collect a debt that arose from a mortgage from almost 30 years ago that was already dismissed with prejudice in a 2005 lawsuit against Mr. Lockhart.

RTR initially defended the RTR Class Action by arguing that RTR did not have the duty to provide any disclosures of the right to obtain debt validation as such notice was purportedly provided by one or more prior debt collectors. The case law on this salient issue was unsettled at the appellate level until the 9th Circuit on July 20, 2016 ruled in Hernandez v. Williams, Zinman & Parham, P.C., ____ F3d____, 2016 WL3913445 (9th Cir. 2016). In Hernandez, the Court held that as a matter of first impression the validation notice required by the FDCPA after “initial communication” with debtor must be sent anew by each debt collector, first or subsequent, that attempted to collect a debt. Id. at *3913449.

Information about the settlement can be found at: