BOSTON (Legal Newsline) — Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced Feb. 27 that she has joined a multistate amicus brief filed in the U.S. Supreme Court. In the brief, the attorneys general argue that debt buyers that purchase defaulted consumer debt and attempt to collect it should be subject to federal laws related to debt collection.
“Debt buyers purchasing defaulted consumer debt for pennies on the dollar, only to turn around and pursue consumers using unlawful and harassing collection tactics should be subject not only to state law but also federal law,” Healey said. “It is vital that states have all the resources at their disposal to protect consumers from unscrupulous debt collectors.”
Oregon is leading the amicus brief, which argues that any company that regularly purchases delinquent debt and then attempts to collect on that debt should be considered a “debt collector.” Debt collectors are subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).
The amicus brief involves attorneys general from Oregon, Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington and the District of Columbia.