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 Legislation News

1. A very recent ruling by Florida's Fourth District Court of Appeals discusses the procedure for denying a judgment debtor's head of household exemption to garnishment, and spells trouble for creditor's attorneys, especially attorneys representing major banks and credit card companies.

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2. Florida Senate Bill CS/HB59 revised Florida Statute, Chapter 48 on service of process. State Rep. John Patrick Julien sponsored the bill which was signed into law on June 17 by Governor Rick Scott and made effective as of July 1st.  The bill affects methods of service in gated communities and corporate service, among other requirements for process servers.

Read full version of the Senate Bill

3. U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen pushes legislation to set time limit on bill collections

WASHINGTON — As it stands right now, Gwendolyn E. Hall owes Covington Pike Acceptance Co. $5,503 plus attorneys’ fees. Whether she will in the long run is in dispute.

What is clear is that Covington Pike sued her to collect the debt in August 2002, couldn’t find her to serve the complaint, then waited almost eight years before obtaining a $7,337 judgment against her last September in Shelby County General Sessions Court.

That would not have happened if a bill introduced last month by U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., had been the law. Cohen’s bill would bar lawsuits by creditors who seek to collect a debt after the statute of limitations has run, as Hall’s lawyers say it had in her case.

4. On June 30, 2011, the Florida Supreme Court adopted sweeping new rules about what information can and can't be put in the court file. Florida litigators who want to avoid the sanctions that can be imposed for violating the new rules shouldn't wait too long to become familiar with them -- they are going into effect on October 1, 2011.

Read full version of the Senate Bill.

Industry News and Events

Weissman v. Unifund CCR Partners (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Apr. 2, 2009)(Yates)
Turning the tables on debt collectors: FDCPA CLAIM SUCCEEDS:
Third-party debt collector brought suit to confirm arbitration award entered under the FAA in a state court after the one-year statute of limitations had passed (it later non-suited), and did not answer discovery requests when subsequently sued for violating the Federal Debt Collection Practices Act in federal court.  See Summary Judgment granted in FDCPA suit based on deemed admissions. Debt collector had failed
to answer requests for admissions and other discovery and had thus admitted violation of federal law. Magistrate judge denied Debt Collector's Motion to Withdraw Deemed Admissions in FDCPA action, and Motion to Extend Dispositive Motions Deadline.   

In the Firm

Employee of the Month Program will be in place in August, 2011.