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Relin Goldstein & Crane LLP

At The Langel Firm, we fiercely protect you against collection lawsuits filed by Relin Goldstein & Crane LLP. We defend lawsuits, wage garnishments and bank seizures. It is not too late. We understand financial pressures and hence offer flexible payment plans.

Relin Goldstein & Crane LLP is located at 28 E Main St #1800, Rochester, NY 14614. Its phone number is (585) 325-6202.

Court Dismisses Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Case Against Relin, Goldstein & Crane, LLP

In a putative class action, plaintiff Solomon Braun claimed that a collection letter he received from Relin, Goldstein & Crane, LLP (RGC) violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by falsely representing attorney involvement and overshadowing his debt validation rights. The court granted RGC's motion to dismiss, finding that Braun's allegations lacked sufficient factual basis and failed to state a claim under the FDCPA.

3 Key Points:

  1. Braun alleged that RGC's collection letter violated § 1692e of the FDCPA by misleadingly suggesting attorney involvement. However, the court found Braun's allegations to be conclusory and lacking supporting facts, ultimately dismissing the claim.
  2. Braun also claimed that RGC's letter violated § 1692g of the FDCPA by overshadowing his debt validation rights. The court determined that the letter clearly provided the required validation notice and did not overshadow or contradict the disclosure of Braun's rights, leading to the dismissal of this claim as well.
  3. The court emphasized that allegations made "upon information and belief" must be supported by a plausible factual basis or provide a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of illegality, which Braun failed to do.

Case Citation: Braun v. Relin, Goldstein & Crane, LLP, 21-CV-6071 (CJS), 2021 WL 5054288, at *4–6 (W.D.N.Y. Nov. 1, 2021).

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What does "overshadowing collection rights" mean in the context of the FDCPA?

In the context of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), "overshadowing collection rights" refers to a violation that occurs when a debt collector's communication or actions undermine or diminish a consumer's rights to dispute a debt or request validation of the debt.

Under the FDCPA, when a debt collector communicates with a consumer regarding a debt, it must include a validation notice that informs the consumer of their right to dispute the debt within a certain timeframe. The purpose of this notice is to ensure that consumers are aware of their rights and can exercise them if necessary.

Overshadowing occurs when a debt collector's communication or conduct, either explicitly or implicitly, creates confusion, uncertainty, or intimidation that would make a "least sophisticated consumer" uncertain about their rights or discourage them from exercising those rights. This could involve using language or tactics that distract or minimize the importance of the validation notice, creating a false sense of urgency, or making threats of legal action that make it difficult for the consumer to understand and exercise their rights.

50 Common Violations of the FDCPA (by any "Debt Collector")

  1. Threatening or filing a lawsuit on an expired debt (deemed too old).
  2. Misrepresenting the collector's legal rights, such as communicating with third parties or executing a judgment without court approval.
  3. Persisting in collection efforts for a debt the collector knows is invalid.
  4. Misrepresenting the urgency or immediacy of a collection lawsuit.
  5. Threatening legal action without legitimate ownership or assignment of the debt.
  6. Misrepresenting the creditor's authority to sue.
  7. Falsely attaching self-created account statements to a collection complaint, presenting them as originating from the creditor.
  8. Issuing false threats to report the debt to employers or credit reporting agencies.
  9. Misrepresenting credit repair matters related to credit scores, late payments, and aged accounts.
  10. Misrepresenting the expiration of the right to dispute a debt.
  11. Demanding full payment on an installment contract lacking an acceleration clause.
  12. Utilizing false or fictitious names.
  13. Creating an artificial sense of urgency to elicit a response.
  14. Misrepresenting that only the collector is authorized to accept full payment.
  15. Falsely implying that the collector provides legal advice to the creditor.
  16. Engaging in legal actions that amount to the unauthorized practice of law.
  17. Contradicting or confusing a consumer's rights to verify a debt.
  18. Coercing payment through Western Union or overnight mail.
  19. Falsely implying a connection to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
  20. Discouraging consumers from answering complaints or seeking legal counsel.
  21. Misrepresenting the number and types of collection agency employees.
  22. Misrepresenting a consumer's obligations by threatening to collect fees or charges not owed.
  23. Participating in unlicensed debt collection practices (search for New York City here).
  24. Knowingly engaging in or profiting from sewer service.
  25. Implying or utilizing documents that falsely suggest the existence of a default judgment.
  26. Misrepresenting the identity of the creditor or the payee.
  27. Filing a collection lawsuit beyond the statute of limitations.
  28. Initiating a lawsuit without the intention to meet the burden of proof.
  29. Falsely asserting personal knowledge of a creditor's business records.
  30. Pursuing a collection lawsuit or selling alleged debts while knowing the wrong party was targeted.
  31. Suing for a debt that has been discharged in bankruptcy.
  32. Seeking pre-judgment interest not permitted by state law.
  33. Filing multiple lawsuits for the same debt.
  34. Taking action on a breached settlement agreement without sending the required notice to cure.
  35. Falsely implying a prior award of attorneys' fees.
  36. Seeking collection on debts covered by third parties, such as medical debts under Worker's Compensation.
  37. Contacting a consumer represented by an attorney.
  38. Directly sending a verification response to a consumer when verification was demanded by the consumer's attorney.
  39. Making threats of a collection lawsuit that were not intended or as imminent as represented.
  40. Threatening a collection lawsuit beyond the collector's contractual authority.
  41. Threatening a collection lawsuit before verification or before a consumer's statutory or contractual period to cure delinquency.
  42. Threatening a garnishment without a judgment or court order.
  43. Enforcing a judgment that has already been vacated.
  44. Stating or implying that a consumer lacks a legal defense to a collection lawsuit.
  45. Stating or implying that a collection lawsuit has been filed when it hasn't.
  46. Stating or implying that a judgment has been entered when it hasn't.
  47. Adding unauthorized charges or judgment costs without obtaining a judgment.
  48. Falsely threatening to refer the consumer to an attorney.
  49. Misrepresenting rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
  50. Making false threats of "investigations" into the consumer's "assets."

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Denial of Default Judgment Motion by Relin Goldstein & Crane, LLP, Representing Plaintiff

3 Key Points:

  1. Denial of Default Judgment: The plaintiff's motion, represented by Relin Goldstein & Crane, LLP, for a default judgment against the defendant, Berit Greve, was denied due to jurisdictional issues and procedural deficiencies.
  2. Nail and Mail Service: The plaintiff attempted to serve the defendant through the "nail and mail" method under CPLR § 308(4), but failed to demonstrate due diligence as required by the law.
  3. Lack of Proper Affidavit: The plaintiff's motion was also denied because it lacked a proper affidavit by the party-plaintiff or a complaint verified by the party, as mandated by CPLR § 3215(f).

Case Citation: Credit Acceptance Corporation v. Berit Greve, No. 17228–2006, March 22, 2007.

What is "nail and mail" service under New York CPLR § 308(4)?

Under New York Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR) § 308(4), the "nail and mail" method of service can be used when personal service under CPLR § 308(1) and (2) cannot be made with due diligence. The elements of the "nail and mail" method of service include:

  1. Due Diligence Requirement: The plaintiff must demonstrate that they have made diligent efforts to personally serve the defendant but have been unsuccessful in doing so.

  2. Posting of Documents: The process server must physically affix a copy of the summons and complaint to the defendant's actual place of business or dwelling. It should be securely attached in a noticeable location, such as the door of the premises.

  3. Mailing of Documents: After the posting, the process server must promptly mail a copy of the summons and complaint to the defendant's last known residence or actual place of business.

It's important to note that the "nail and mail" method of service should only be used when personal service is not feasible and after the plaintiff has made diligent attempts to serve the defendant personally. The due diligence requirement must be strictly observed to ensure proper compliance with the law.

If you need help, call us at (888) 271-7109, or complete this form.

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