June 1, 2016

Daniel L. Geyser Secures Important Bankruptcy Victory

In an important case involving a billion-dollar industry, Stris & Maher successfully persuaded the Eleventh Circuit to revive federal claims challenging an abusive debt-collection practice. Debt collectors buy time-barred debts for pennies on the dollar, and then flood bankruptcy courts in an effort to collect on those knowingly time-barred debts. While the Eleventh Circuit had previously determined that such conduct violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the district court held that the Bankruptcy Code implicitly repealed the FDCPA. Stris & Maher appellate chair Daniel Geyser convinced the Eleventh Circuit to reverse, rejecting the notion that the Bankruptcy Code somehow trumped the FDCPA. Similar cases involving the issue are pending in several Circuits.

Related press coverage:
Bankruptcy Code Doesn’t Conflict With Debt Collection Statute (Bloomberg BNA, June 1, 2016)
11th Circ. Finds Collectors At Risk In Pursuing Old Debts (Law360, May 24, 2016)
Eleventh Circuit Rules Against Debt Collectors, Deepening Split of Circuits on the FDCPA (American Bankruptcy Institute)