Tzanetis v. Weinstein & Riley
A debt collection letter than indicates that the amount owed could change as a result of additional interest, late fees, attorneys' fees and costs may not violate the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Allegedly, a representative of the defendant law firm, Weinstein & Riley, P.C., wrote a letter that stated, "The amount due on the day you pay may be greater because of additional interest, late fees, attorney fees and costs, and other charges that may vary from day to day." A recipient of the letter, Kara Tzanetis, sued and alleged that the defendant law firm violated the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 United States Code §1692. The District Court granted the law firm's motion for summary judgment, and Tzanetis appealed to the 2nd Circuit. The 2nd Circuit reviewed de novo the order of a District Court to grant a motion for summary judgment. Summary judgment is merited only upon a showing "that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law," pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56(a). "The [defendant law firm's] letters," wrote the 2nd Circuit, "contained passages that merely indicated the possibility that other lawful charges might accrue at a later date, and do not establish a violation of the FDCPA." The 2nd Circuit affirmed the decision of the District Court, Squatrito, J.