AN ACT CONCERNING CONSUMER COLLECTION AGENCIES AND DEBT COLLECTION ACTIONS.
Sec. 6. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2016) In any cause of action initiated by a creditor, as defined in section 36a-645 of the general statutes, or by a consumer collection agency, as defined in section 36a-800, as amended by this act, for a liability on debt owed by a consumer debtor, as defined in section 36a-645 of the general statutes, the creditor or consumer collection agency shall attach the following materials to the complaint:
(1) A copy of the contract or other documentation evidencing the original debt and containing a signature of the consumer debtor or, if the debt is credit card debt and no such signed documentation exists, copies of the documentation generated when the credit card was used; and
(2) A copy of the assignment or other documentation (A) establishing that the plaintiff creditor is the owner of the debt, (B) containing the original account number and name associated with the debt, and, (C) if the debt has been assigned more than once, a copy of each assignment or other documentation that establishes an unbroken chain of ownership of the debt by the plaintiff creditor.
RULE 1 CAN BE SUMMARIZED AS FOLLOWS
THE FOLLOWING DOCUMENTATION NEEDS TO BE ATTACHED TO THE COMPLAINT
A. IF NOT A CREDIT CARD DEBT – A copy of the contract or other documentation evidencing the original debt and containing a signature of the consumer debtor
The important part of this rule is the requirement that the creditor have documentation with the consumer debtor’s signature. Note that this is consumer debt, not commercial debt. Also, a court should strike the complaint if there is no appropriate signature.
B. IF CREDIT CARD DEBT – Either
1. documentation with a signature OR
2. copies of the documentation generated when the credit card was used. This should require credit card statements showing use of the card, with charges. It should be insufficient to provide statements merely showing the accrual of interest and late fees.
RULE 2 APPLIES TO DEBT BUYERS – IT REQUIRES THREE POSSIBLE
ITEMS PROVING A PROPER ASSIGNMENT OF THE DEBT (PROVES THAT
THIS CREDITOR HAS OWNERSHIP OF DEBT)
A. PROOF THAT THE PLAINTIFF ACTUALLY OWNS THE DEBT – TYPICALLY THIS IS DONE BY AN AFFIDAVIT BY THE ORIGINAL CREDITOR, OR COPY OF DOCUMENTS SHOWING ASSIGNMENT
B. DOCUMENTATION SHOWS ORIGINAL ACCOUNT NUMBER AND NAME (THIS ALLOWS A DEFENDANT TO VERIFY THE ORIGINAL ACCOUNT INFORMATION)
C. IF DEBT IS ASSIGNED MORE THAN ONCE, PROOF OF EACH TRANSFER, FROM CREDIT GRANTOR TO CURRENT PLAINTIFF (IN SOME CASES, THE DEBT HAS BEEN TRANSFERRED MULTIPLE TIMES, AND THE FINAL OWNER CANNOT PROVE THAT EACH TRANSFER WAS LEGAL)
Attorney Robert M. Singer
Law Offices of Robert M. Singer, LLC
2572 Whitney Avenue
Hamden, CT 06518