United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division
TABETHA-JENNIE HIGGINS, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, Plaintiff,
QUALITY RECOVERY SERVICES, INC., and John Does 1-25, Defendants.
NON-FINAL REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION ON A MOTION TO
S. ANAND UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
above-captioned action is before the Court on the Motion to
Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim  (“Motion to
Dismiss”) filed by Defendant Quality Recovery Services,
Inc. (“Defendant”). For the reasons discussed
below, the undersigned RECOMMENDS that
Defendant's Motion to Dismiss  be
Tabetha-Jennie Higgins (“Plaintiff”) initiated
this action by filing a Class Action Complaint 
(“Complaint”) on July 10, 2017, asserting that
Defendant had violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices
Act, (“FDCPA”), 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692,
et seq. Defendant filed the Motion to Dismiss  on
September 26, 2017. Plaintiff filed a Memorandum of Law in
Opposition to Defendant's Motion to Dismiss 
(“Pl. Br.”) on October 10, 2017.
following facts are taken from Plaintiffs' allegations in
the Complaint  and the documents attached thereto, and are
assumed to be true for the purpose of this discussion.
about January 5, 2017, Defendant caused to be delivered to
Plaintiff a collection letter in an attempt to collect an
alleged debt owed to Windrush Apartments. Compl. ¶ 31,
Ex A. [1-1] (the “Collection Letter”). Windrush
Apartments had contracted Defendant to collect this alleged
debt. Compl. ¶ 30. The Collection Letter was the first
communication between Defendant and Plaintiff regarding the
alleged debt to Windrush Apartments. Compl. ¶ 32.
Collection Letter stated that Plaintiff owed $3, 473.36.
Compl., Ex. A. The Letter stated, in relevant part:
Please be advised that your account has been assigned to
Quality Recovery Services, Inc. for collection. Unless you
notify this office in writing within 30 days after receiving
this notice that you dispute the validity of this debt or any
portion thereof, this office will assume the debt is valid.
Compl. ¶ 37, Ex. A. Plaintiff received and read the
Collection Letter sometime after January 5, 2017. Compl.
¶ 35. Plaintiff believed that the only legally effective
way to dispute the debt was to do so in writing. Compl.
Complaint, Plaintiff asserts two Counts for relief. In Count
I, Plaintiff asserts that Defendant violated § 1692g of
the FDCPA by failing accurately to convey the notice that
Defendant was required to provide to Plaintiff under §
1692g(a). Compl ¶ 47. In Count II, which is mislabeled
in the Complaint as a second “Count I, ”
Plaintiff asserts that Defendant violated § 1692e of the
FDCPA by making a false representation in connection with the
collection of a debt, namely, that the only effective way
Plaintiff could dispute the debt was to do so in writing.
Compl. ¶¶ 51-52. Plaintiff brings this action
individually and putatively on behalf of a class consisting
of “a) All consumers who have an address in the state
of Georgia b) who were sent a collection letter from the
Defendant c) attempting to collect a consumer debt, d) that
states ‘Unless you notify this office in writing within
30 days after receiving this notice that you dispute the
validity of this debt or any portion thereof, this office
will assume this debt is valid.' e) which letter was sent
on or after a date one year prior to the filing of this
action and on or before a date 21 days after the filing of
this action.” Compl. ¶ 14.
moves to dismiss the Complaint under Rule 12(b)(6) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for failure to state a claim
upon which relief can be granted. See Def. Mot. at
Standard on a Motion to Dismiss
evaluating a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), the Court
cannot consider matters outside of the pleadings, and must
accept the allegations of the non-movant's pleadings as
true, but “[t]o survive a motion to dismiss, a
complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as
true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on
its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S.
662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). Moreover, “a
plaintiff's obligation to provide the ‘grounds'
of his ‘entitle[ment] to relief' requires more than
labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action will not do.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (citations omitted).
went on to instruct that, while a court must accept all
factual allegations in a complaint as true, it need not
accept as true legal conclusions recited in a complaint.
Repeating that “only a complaint that states a
plausible claim for relief survives a motion to dismiss,
” the Supreme Court advised that “[d]etermining
whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief will
. . . be a context-specific task that requires the reviewing
court to draw on its judicial experience and common sense.
But where the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to
infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the
complaint has alleged-but it has not
‘show[n]'-‘that the pleader is entitled to
relief.'” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679 (quoting
Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)) (other citations omitted).
case, because Plaintiff attached the Collection Letter to the
Complaint, it is considered part of the Complaint for all
purposes. Fed.R.Civ.P. 10(c).
Defendant's Motion to Dismiss
does not dispute the facts at issue in this case, nor does it
otherwise dispute the applicability of the FDCPA to its
Collection Letter,  at least for purposes of the Motion to
Dismiss. See Def. Mot. at 4. The principal issue
presented by Defendant's Motion to Dismiss is whether the
inclusion of the words “in writing” in the
above-quoted language from the Collection Letter violated 15
U.S.C. § 1692g(a)(3) and § 1692(e)(10). In short,
Defendant argues that § 1692g(a)(3) impliedly requires a
consumer's dispute of a debt to be “in
writing” to be effective, and hence, the Collection
Letter accurately conveyed the notice that Defendant was
required to provide to Plaintiff under that subsection.
See Def. Mot. At 9-10. Secondarily, Defendant argues
that Plaintiff's Complaint fails sufficiently to allege a
violation of the FDCPA because Plaintiff does not allege that
Defendant's wording in the Collection Letter was
confusing to the “least sophisticated consumer.”