In Booth v. Mee, Mee & Hoge, P.L.L.C., 2010 WL 988473 (W.D.Okla. 2010), Judge DiGiusti applied a narrow reading of the Ninth Circuit’s holding in Slenk, and determined a debt’s ‘consumer purpose’ at the time of debt origination rather than a later consumer use of the collateral. Judge DiGiusti explained:
Courts construing the FDCPA have generally held, however, that the relevant time for determining the nature of the debt is the time at which the debt was created rather than when collection is attempted. Miller v. McCalla, Raymer, Padrick, Cobb, Nichols, and Clark, L.L. C., 214 F.3d 872, 874 (7th Cir.2000); Fleet National Bank v. Baker, 263 F.Supp.2d 150, 153-154 (D.Mass.2003); Kattula v. Jade, 2008 WL 495298, at *7 (E.D.Mich. Feb. 20, 2008) (unpublished opinion). ¶ Thus, even if Plaintiffs in this case later used the equipment for other than business purposes, that fact does not preclude the determination that the FDCPA does not apply. At the relevant time in this case, the undisputed evidence establishes the debt was created for a business purpose. ¶ In support of their argument, Plaintiffs rely on Slenk v. Transworld Systems, Inc., 236 F.3d 1072 (9th Cir.2001), a decision in which the plaintiff incurred a debt resulting from the purchase of a backhoe; at the time the debt was incurred, the plaintiff stated his intent to use the backhoe in his business. However, after collection efforts began on the unpaid debt, he offered evidence that the backhoe was used only for work at his home and not in his business. 236 F.3d at 1075. ¶ As Defendant correctly notes, the Ninth Circuit did not hold that the FDCPA governed the transaction, but found the debtor had presented a disputed question of material fact precluding resolution of the issue in a summary judgment motion. Slenk, 236 F.3d at 1076. The Ninth Circuit also rejected the argument that debts procured by a sole proprietor necessarily constitute consumer debts for FDCPA purposes; the Circuit instead found that the debtor had the burden of proving that a transaction was entered into for personal, family, or household purposes. Id. (citing and adopting the Court’s reasoning in Beaton, 986 F.Supp. at 1362).