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.
OPINION AND ORDER
WILLIAM S. DUTFEY, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter is before the Court on Magistrate Judge Justin S.
Anand's Non-Final Report and Recommendation 
(“Non-Final R&R”). The Non-Final R&R
recommends that the Court deny Defendant Quality Recovery
Services, Inc.'s (“Defendant”) Motion to
January 5, 2017, Defendant sent a letter to Plaintiff
Tabetha-Jennie Higgins (“Plaintiff”) to collect
an alleged debt owed to Windrush Apartments. ( (Complaint)
at ¶ 31, [1.1] (the “Collection Letter”)).
Windrush had contracted Defendant to collect this amount
allegedly owed. ( at ¶ 30). The Collection Letter was
the first communication between Defendant and Plaintiff
regarding the amount owed to Windrush Apartments. ( at
¶ 32). The Collection Letter stated that Plaintiff owed
$3, 473.36 to Windrush. ([1.1]). The Collection 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.
( at ¶ 37; [1.1]).
received and read the Collection Letter sometime after
January 5, 2017. ( at ¶ 35). Plaintiff believed that
the only legally effective way to dispute the debt was to do
so in writing. ( at ¶ 38).
filed this Class Action Complaint on July 10, 2017, asserting
that Defendant had violated the Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act, (“FDCPA”), 15 U.S.C. §§
1692, et seq. (). 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). ( at ¶ 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. ( at ¶¶
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
( at ¶ 14).
filed its Motion to Dismiss  on September 26, 2017.
Plaintiff filed a Memorandum of Law in Opposition to
Defendant's Motion to Dismiss  on October 10, 2017.
February 13, 2018, the Magistrate Judge issued his Non-Final
R&R. The Magistrate Judge first addressed whether §
1692g(a)(3) contains a writing requirement. The Magistrate
Judge concluded that it did not. The Magistrate Judge found
that Plaintiff may state a claim for violations of §
1692g(a)(3) and § 1692e(10) on the basis of her
allegations that Defendant's Collection Letter required
her to dispute her debt “in writing, ” and that
she was misled into believing that only a written dispute
would be valid. ( at 16).
Magistrate Judge next considered whether Plaintiff failed to
plead that the Collection Letter was confusing to the
“least sophisticated consumer.” ( at 18). The
Magistrate judge concluded that Plaintiff specifically
pleaded that because of the Collection Letter, she, “as
would any least sophisticated consumer, ” believed that
she could only dispute her debt in writing ( at ¶ 38)
and this was sufficient to sustain a cause of action. (
the Magistrate Judge rejected Defendant's argument that
Plaintiff's interpretation of § 1692g of the FDCPA