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Baptist v. Global Holding and Investment Co.

July 9, 2007

RISPA BAPTIST, PLAINTIFF,
v.
GLOBAL HOLDING AND INVESTMENT COMPANY, L.L.C., AND GLOBAL BOND FINANCIAL SERVICES, L.L.C., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Trager, J.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

Plaintiff Rispa Baptist ("Baptist" or "plaintiff") brings this action against defendants Global Holding and Investment Company, L.L.C. ("Global Holding") and Global Bond Financial Services, L.L.C. ("Global Bond") (collectively, "defendants"), alleging that a debt collection letter she received from the defendants violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ("FDCPA"), 15 U.S.C. § 1692(e).*fn1 Plaintiff now moves for summary judgment pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 56, arguing, inter alia, that defendants threatened legal action that could not be taken nor was intended to be taken. For the reasons set forth below, plaintiff's motion for summary judgment is granted.

Background

(1)

The material facts are not in dispute. On or about March 26, 2004, Baptist received a letter from Daryl Epstein, legal counsel for Global Holding and Global Bond. The heading of the letter referenced a debt owed by Baptist for approximately $109. The debt relates to the financing of a vacuum cleaner which was purchased in February 1983.

The letter was printed on the letterhead of Daryl Epstein, Esq., and indicates he is general counsel for both defendants. The letter reads:

Dear Rispa Baptist,

Gold Bond Financial Services, L.L.C. has transferred your file to the Legal Department for the collection of your debts. Unless you dispute the validity of the debt or any portion thereof within thirty days, this debt will be assumed to be valid.

If, within thirty days of receipt of this notice, you notify this office in writing that this debt or any portion thereof is disputed, verification of the debt will be provided. We will provide you with the name and address of the original creditor if different from the current creditor, if you request this information in writing within thirty days.

If you do not contact this office and make arrangements for payment of this debt, my office will proceed in accordance with the instructions of Gold Bond Financial Services, L.L.C. Legal action against you may be authorized, which will increase the amount for which you will ultimately be responsible to pay.

You can avoid this action by contacting this office immediately.

Very truly yours, Daryl Epstein, Esq.

Attorney (Emphasis added).

On or about June 8, 2004, Baptist commenced the present action against defendants to recover statutory damages and ...


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