Consumer brings class action suit against debt collector

By Carol Ostrow | May 10, 2015


PHILADELPHIA – A Pennsylvania man sued a Florida debt collection firm alleging consumer law violations in 2014.

John C. Pawlowski Jr., of Southampton, brought a class-action complaint against United Tranzactions LLC (UTA), of Miramar, Fla., and Janet Eden in the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania on April 28, alleging deceptive practices dating to August 2014.

Pawlowski purchased supplies from a Warrington home improvement store with a convenience check drawn from his Bank of America credit line on or about Aug. 20, 2014. The lawsuit states that the plaintiff had ample funds to cover the $1,821.90 transaction.

According to the filing, the store contracts with UTA for check acceptance services. He received a phone call from Eden on or about Sept. 23, 2014, informing him that his check was written on insufficient funds. Disputing the debt, the plaintiff states that he was advised by both the bank and the store that there was no issue.

Eden continued to call daily, the lawsuit states, harassing and threatening him through October 2014. Finally, court documents indicate, the plaintiff received a form dunning letter, on Nov. 5, 2014, with a $30 “returned check fee” added to the bill. Pawlowski paid the total on or about Nov. 19, 2014.

The lawsuit states that UTA routinely sends such letters to consumers in violation of state law; and seeks to reimburse all Pennsylvanians who have been subjected to UTA’s returned check fee.

Citing violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and alleging false representation and unjust enrichment, the plaintiff seeks injunctive and declaratory relief, attorneys’ fees and court costs. The plaintiff is represented by James Francis and John Soumilas of Francis and Mailman in Philadelphia.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania case no. 2:15-cv-02330-MAK.

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