In Catalfamo v. Countrywide Home Loans, 2008 WL 4158432 (E.D.Cal. 2008), Judge O’Neal held that the FDCPA does not afford a right to punitive damages, since the FDCPA already affords a right to a penalty.
Mr. Catalfamo may not recover punitive damages for his RESPA, FDCPA, and breach of contract claims. RESPA and FDCPA provide for compensatory relief, reasonable attorneys’ fees,and additional damages as the court may allow, not to exceed $1000. 12 U.S.C. § 2605(f); 15 U.S.C. § 1692k. While the Court may award attorneys’ fees if the Court ultimately finds that Countrywide acted in bad faith and for the purpose of harassment, 15 U.S.C. § 1692k, the statutes do not allow Mr. Catalfamo to recover punitive damages.