In Bedrosian v. State Collection Service, Inc., 2016 WL 743390, at *2-3 (E.D.Mo., 2016), Judge White dismissed an FDCPA Plaintiff’s claim, saying that simply responding to the Plaintiff’s questions about the possibilities of what could happen if the Plaintiff did not pay her debt did not constitute an illegal threat.
Defendant contends that Plaintiff fails to state a claim under Section 1692e(4), which prohibits: “The representation or implication that nonpayment of any debt will result in the arrest or imprisonment of any person or the seizure, garnishment, attachment, or sale of any property or wages of any person unless such action is lawful and the debt collector or creditor intends to take such action.” 15 U.S.C.A. § 1692e(4). Defendant maintains that Plaintiff cannot state a claim under Section 1692e(4) because Defendant never threatened to garnish Plaintiff. (ECF No. 11 at 5). Defendant likens this case to Arteaga v. Asset Acceptance, LLC, 733 F. Supp. 2d 1218 (E.D. Cal. 2010) where the plaintiff alleged that the collector “threatened her by telling her that [the collector] ‘could attach [her] bank accounts with or without’ her ‘sending them the correspondence.” Id. at 1223. The Arteaga court ultimately found that there was no FDCPA claim under Section 1692e because the plaintiff: “admits that she was never told that Asset would attach her bank account. Ms. Arteaga further admits that she asked Ms. Plimely about whether sending the check would allow asset to attach her bank account, and that Ms. Plimely’s statement was in response to Ms. Arteaga’s direct question related to whether Asset could attach her bank account. Ms. Arteaga admits that she was never told that Asset would attach her bank account. Under these circumstances, in which the consumer had initiated the phone call, raised the subject regarding the attachment of the bank account, and asked a question about Asset’s abilities to attach her bank account, the allegedly threatening statement was a response to the customer’s direct question on the subject, and the debt collector did not make any statements that action would be taken, the least reasonable consumer would understand Ms. Plimely’s response was informational and not a threat. See, Wade v. Regional Credit Ass’n, 87 F.3d 1098 (9th Cir.1996) (collection agency’s notice that failure to pay amount may adversely affect debtor’s credit was not a threat to take action that could not legally be taken in violation of FDCPA). Accordingly, this Court grants summary judgment in favor of Asset on these claims. Id. at 1231. Therefore, Defendant asserts that Plaintiff fails to state a claim as a matter of law.” The Court grants Defendant’s motion to dismiss this Section 1692e(4) claim. Here, Defendant was responding to Plaintiff’s question regarding whether garnishment was possible. Defendant was not threatening or harassing Plaintiff. Plaintiff acknowledges that “[a]t no time during the phone call did Defendant provide Plaintiff with an affirmative response as to whether or not the debt could actually be garnished.” (Complaint, ¶23). Plaintiff has not alleged that Defendant threatened Plaintiff with garnishment. Accordingly, the Court finds no FDCPA violation on this basis.