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Zweigenhaft v. Receivables Performance Management, LLC

United States District Court, E.D. New York

November 13, 2014

ABRAHAM ZWEIGENHAFT, Plaintiff,
v.
RECEIVABLES PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT, LLC, Defendant.

MEMORANDUM & ORDER

RAYMOND J. DEARIE, District Judge.

In this Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ("FDCPA") suit, defendant Receivables Performance Management, LLC ("RPM") left a voicemail on plaintiff Abraham Zweigenhaft's home phone and identified itself as a debt collector. Mr. Zweigenhaft's son heard the message and returned the call. The RPM representative asked if he was "Abra Zweigenhaft." Mr. Zweigenhaft claims that the voicemail and phone conversation violated the FDCPA's prohibition on third-party communications. 15 U.S.C. § 1692c(b). Each party has filed for summary judgment. To resolve the dispute, the Court must decide whether a voicemail stating that a call is from a debt collector coupled with a return phone call where the voicemail's intended recipient is disclosed to a third party is a violation of the FDCPA. I determine that it is not and grant summary judgment for defendant.

BACKGROUND

The facts are not in dispute. Abraham Zweigenhaft incurred a debt to Verizon Wireless, and Verizon enlisted RPM to collect the debt. See Rule 56.1 Statement ¶¶ 1-2. RPM called Mr. Zweigenhaft and left the following voicemail:[1] "We have an important message from RPM. This is a call from a debt collector. Please call 1(866) 212-7408." Id. ¶ 6. Mr. Zweigenhaft's son heard the message and, on January 22, returned RPM's call. See Compl. ¶ 13. He then had the following conversation with an RPM representative:

RPM: Thank you for calling Receivables Performance Management on a recorded line. This is Michelle how can I help you?
Caller: Hi how are you? I received a message to call you, and I am just trying to figure out who you are trying to reach.
RPM: Okay and your phone number please, area code first.
Caller: (718) 258-9010
RPM: And is this Abra?
Caller: Is this who?
RPM: Abra Zweigenhaft?
Caller: Nope. It's not.
RPM: Okay let me go ahead and take your phone number off the list. The last four digits ...

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