In Velazquez v. NCO Financial Systems, Inc., 2011 WL 2135633 (E.D.Pa. 2011), Judge Kelley held that a debtor is not required to first dispute the debt before undertaking legal action:
NCO argues that Velazquez’s suit is improperly before us because a plaintiff must invoke the dispute procedures of § 1692(g) prior to taking legal action. In support of its argument, NCO cites to Bleich v. Revenue Maximization Group, Inc., 233 F.Supp.2d 496 (E.D.N.Y.2002) and Palmer v. I.C. Sys., Inc., No. C–04–03237, 2005 WL 3001877 at *5 (N.D.Cal. Nov. 8, 2005). FN7 Both cases dealt with FDCPA claims at the summary judgment stage and held that a plaintiff cannot state a cause of action solely based upon the collector’s attempt to collect an invalid debt without following the dispute procedures provided in § 1692(g). 233 F.Supp.2d at 497, 501; 2005 WL 3001877 at *1, 5. [FN7. NCO also cites Reed v. Afni, Inc., No. 2:09–CV–495, 2011 WL 112430 (D. Utah Jan 13, 2011) (adopting Bleich); Lindbergh v. Transworld Sys. Inc., 846 F.Supp. 175 (D.Conn.1994) (§ 1692(e) prohibits only knowing or intentional misrepresentations by debt collectors so plaintiff must dispute debt prior to bringing suit); Richmond v. Higgins, 435 F.3d 825 (8th Cir.2006) (collector’s attempts to collect an undisputed debt did not violate the FDCPA); and Daniel v. Asset Acceptance L.L.C., No.06–15600, 2007 WL 3124640 (E.D.Mich. Oct. 23, 2007) (adopting Bleich ). However, NCO’s analysis is confined to Bleich and Palmer and we will limit our discussion accordingly.]. ¶ . . . Next, we find that Velazquez, was not required to dispute the debt pursuant to § 1692(g) prior to filing suit. First, at least one district court has disagreed with the rationale of Bleich and Palmer. See Burdett v. Harrah’s Kan. Casino Corp., 294 F.Supp.2d 1215, 1227 (D.Kan.2003). In Burdett, the plaintiff sued the collector alleging that it violated various provisions of the FDCPA by attempting to collect a debt from her deceased father before it knew he was deceased. Id. at 1224–25. The collector moved for summary judgment arguing that the deceased never disputed the debt. Id. at 1227. The court denied summary judgment stating, “[the collector] is not entitled to summary judgment, however, just because [plaintiff and her deceased father] did not dispute the validity or request verification of the debts.” Id. NCO argues that Burdett is inapplicable because the plaintiff in that case alleged that the collector sent multiple communications, including phone calls whereas, here, Velazquez is solely alleging that she does not owe a debt. NCO’s attempt to distinguish this case are unconvincing as the court did not consider the number or manner of communications sent to the plaintiff in its analysis of whether to grant summary judgment on this issue.