In Cerrato v. Solomon & Solomon — F.Supp.2d —-, 2012 WL 6621339 (D.Conn. 2012), Judge Hall found that a debt collector violated a consumer’s cease-and-desist by making 8 attempts to call the customer after the cease-and-desist, even though the customer never answered any of those calls. The Court analogized to Foti‘s holding that voicemail messages were ‘communications’ under the FDCPA, and found, therefore, that call attempts and identification of the calls on the caller ID constituted debt collection ‘communications’ under the FDCPA.
Furthermore, according to the Merriam–Webster dictionary, “communication” means: “an act or in-stance of transmitting; information transmitted or conveyed; a written or verbal message; a process by which information is exchanged between individuals through a common system of symbols, signs, or be-havior.” These definitions do not require a two-way conversation between parties. In fact, they only require that information is transmitted to another party. According to Merriam–Webster, to transmit means “to send or convey from one person or place to an-other,” meaning a communication does not require any reciprocal response from the other party. Using this plain meaning of the term “communication,” it is difficult to see how Solomon’s eight unanswered telephone calls, which displayed as such on the viewer ID of Cerrato and were seen by her, could not constitute “communications.” The calls conveyed to Cerrato (1) who was calling because Solomon’s name appeared on her caller ID display, and (2) why Solo-mon was calling—to collect her debts—because that was (a) the purpose of the myriad calls she received prior to her cease and desist letter, and (b) Solomon’s role as a debt collector. Using the Foti court’s reasoning as a guide and taking the evidence in a light most favorable to Cer-rato, the eight unanswered telephone calls—all of which displayed Solomon’s name and telephone number—constitute “communications” under the FDCPA.