Leaving aside the multiple foreclosure proceedings and subsequent appeals, Mr. Garvey eventually filed a short-lived, pro se Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Attorneys for Seterus filed a Notice of Appearance and Objection to Confirmation. Mr. Garvey then sent a demand to the attorneys, as debt collectors, pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1692g, provide verification under penalty of perjury to substantiate that the alleged debt was owed to Seterus and further stating that failure to comply within seven days would constitute a waiver of all claims against him.
Following the dismissal of the bankruptcy, Mr. Garvey commenced suit in federal district court, which held that, pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1692g(d), “a communication in the form of a formal pleading in a civil action shall not be treated as an initial communication for purposes of subsection (a).” see Carlin v. Davidson Fink LLP, 852 F.3d 207, 213 (2d Cir. 2017). Further, Mr. Garvey’s unilateral mandate that the verification be “under penalty of perjury” was not supported by statute nor was his sanction of waiver of claims for untimely verification.
Mr. Garvey’s further assertion that his demand that the attorneys for Seterus cease further communications, under 15 U.S.C. § 1692c, precluded filing an pleading in bankruptcy court. The district court held this to have “no basis in logic or law.”
Other claims under the FDCPA raised by Mr. Garvey were dispensed with as outside the one-year statute of limitations, which the court held ran from the initial violation, rejecting a “continuing violation theory” in the context of the FDCPA.
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