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CEB Prac. Guide § 2A.57 -- Defenses -- Collateral Estoppel -- The Rooker-Feldman Doctrine

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In Jung v. Cottonwood Financial Wisconsin, LLC, 2014 WL 4796756 (W.D.Wis. 2014), Judge Peterson barred Plaintiff's FDCPA claim based on wrongful garnishment due to the Rooker-Feldman doctrine. Jung's complaint and the parties' supplemental materials support defendants' position that the Rooker–Feldman doctrine applies in this case. Jung alleges that defendants violated both federal and Wisconsin law by using the garnishment notice to collect… Read More

In Benson v. Energy Solutions, Inc., 2014 WL 4311755 (D.Ariz. 2014), Judge Anderson found that an FDCPA claim premised on a debt collector’s obtaining a default judgment and employing garnishment procedures based thereon was barred by the Rooker-Feldman doctrine. “Determining what constitutes a forbidden de facto appeal, however, has sometimes proven difficult for the lower courts.” Kougasian, 359 F.3d at… Read More

In Grant v. Unifund CCR, LLC, --- Fed.Appx. ----, 2014 WL 2444600 (9th Cir. 2014), the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that an FDCPA case removed to federal court and then challenged based on the Rooker-Feldman doctrine must be remanded, not dismissed. Once the district court dismissed with prejudice the first class of claims, all of the… Read More

In King v. Legal Recovery Law Offices, Inc., 2014 WL 938559 (N.D.Cal. 2014), Magistrate Judge Westmore held that the Rooker-Feldman doctrine does not bar an FDCPA claim that is not intricately intertwined with the underlying state court action.  The facts were as follows: On January 13, 2013, Plaintiff and Defendant settled the state court action by way of a stipulated… Read More

In Claflin v. Mandarich Law Group, LLP, 2014 WL 688962 (N.D.Cal. 2014), Judge Alsup refused to stay a federal FDCPA claim filed against the debt collector’s lawyers in an underlying state court debt collection lawsuit.  The FDCPA plaintiffs argued that the debt collector’s lawyers had improperly filed the state court action in a distant forum in violation of the FDCPA. … Read More

In Riding v. Cach LLC, 2014 WL 198764 (C.D.Cal. 2014), Judge Lew found an FDCPA claim premised on collection of a state court lawsuit only partially barred by the Rooker-Feldman doctrine. The Court notes that Plaintiff provides different grounds as the basis for his FDCPA claims. Specifically, Plaintiff's FDCPA §§ 1692d, 1692e, and 1692f claims are based on (1) Defendants' pursuit of… Read More

In Tait v. Asset Acceptance, LLC, 2013 WL 3811767 (C.D.Cal. 2013), Judge Olguin found an FDCPA claim barred by the Rooker-Feldman doctrine where the Plaintiff claimed that he was not served with underlying state court collection action. However, in entering default judgment against plaintiff, the state court expressly found that plaintiff was served with a copy of the summons and… Read More

In Moriarity v. Henriques, 2013 WL 1704937 (E.D.Cal. 2013), Judge Thurston explained the Rooker-Feldman doctrine as applicable in the FDCPA context, finding that it prohibited her from using the FDPCA to review ‘representations’ that the Debtor was properly served in the state court collection action in order to obtain a default judgment. FIA Card Services, N.A. retained the law firm… Read More

Judge Karlton's precedent-setting and liability imposing decisions under the FDCPA are numerous.  (See., e.g, Newman v. Checkrite California, Inc., 912 F.Supp. 1354, E.D.Cal. 1995)(debt collector vicariously liable for debt collection activities of attorney; no FDCPA defense that collector was following the orders of the superiors; litigation privilege does not apply to FDCPA); Newman v. Checkrite California, Inc., 1994 WL 896637… Read More

In Truong v. Mountain Peaks Financial Services, Inc., 2013 WL 485763 (S.D.Cal. 2013), the District Court rejected application of the Rooker-Feldman doctrine and Noerr-Pennington doctrine to bar an FDCPA claim. Rooker–Feldman “is a narrow doctrine, confined to ‘cases brought by state-court losers complaining of injuries caused by state-court judgments rendered before the district court proceedings commenced and inviting district court… Read More

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