Gill v. Credit Bureau of Carbon County
ORDER ; 36 Motion to Reconsider Order Granting Partial Summary Judgment is DENIED, by Magistrate Judge Kathleen M. Tafoya on 3/1/16.(morti, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLORADO
Magistrate Judge Kathleen M. Tafoya
Civil Action No. 14–cv–01888–KMT
CREDIT BUREAU OF CARBON COUNTY d/b/a COLLECTIONCENTER, INC.,
This matter is before the court on Defendant’s “Motion to Reconsider Order Granting
Partial Summary Judgment.” (Doc. No. 36 [“Mot.”], filed June 2, 2015), to which Plaintiff has
responded. (Doc. No. 41 [“Resp.”], filed June 26, 2015.)
Plaintiff brought this action under the Federal Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”).
It arose out of a debt incurred by Plaintiff with the Poudre Valley Hospital (“PVH”) that PVH
assigned to Defendant for collection. (Doc. No. 30 [“Order”] at 2.) Prior to assigning the debt,
PVH did not attempt to collect any interest. (Id.) Upon being assigned the debt, however,
Defendant began charging interest. (Id.)
Defendant sent Plaintiff two letters attempting to the collect the debt. (Id.) Each letter
indicated the “Total Due” and specified corresponding amounts, which included interest. (Id.)
However, the letters did not in any way indicate that the totals included accrued interest or that
the underlying balances would continue to accrue the same. (Id.) Ultimately, Defendant filed a
state court action and obtained a default judgment against Plaintiff for an amount including
accrued interest. (Id. at 2-3.)
In the present action, Plaintiff filed a Motion for Partial Summary Judgment limited
solely to the question of liability. Plaintiff argued that the letters constituted a violation of the
FDCPA because they were misleading regarding the amount of debt owed. (Doc. No. 13.) Both
parties thoroughly briefed their respective arguments, including lengthy discussion on the current
law related to whether and to what extent a creditor had to indicate that interest had and was
continuing to accrue on the subject debt. (Doc. Nos. 13, 17 & 29.)
The court granted Plaintiff’s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment, finding that
Defendant had violated the FDCPA because the letters were misleading, in violation of 15
U.S.C. §1692e. (Order at 11-12.) Specifically, the court found that almost the entirety of the
case law upon which Defendant had relied in arguing that it had no duty to inform Plaintiff
interest had and was accruing was based upon credit card debt and most courts agreed that “even
the most unsophisticated consumer would understand that credit card debt accrues interest.” (Id.
at 11.) In this case, the original creditor had not charged interest and Defendant’s letters stated
only “Total Due,” giving no indication that it was charging interest or that the debt would
increase in the future. (Id. at 11-12)
Defendant now requests the court reconsider its previous order, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ.
P. 59(e). “The purpose of a Rule 59(e) motion is to correct manifest errors of law or to present
newly discovered evidence.” Cory v. City of Basehor, __ F. App’x __, 2015 WL 7003364, at *3
n.2 (10th Cir. Nov. 12, 2015) (quoting Monge v. RG Petro–Machinery (Group) Co. Ltd., 701
F.3d 598, 611 (10th Cir. 2012). “Grounds for granting a Rule 59(e) motion include (1) an
intervening change in the controlling law, (2) new evidence previously unavailable, and (3) the
need to correct clear error or prevent manifest injustice.” Id. A motion for reconsideration is an
“inappropriate vehicle[ ] to reargue an issue previously addressed by the court when the motion
merely advances new arguments, or supporting facts which were available at the time of the
original motion.” Servants of Paraclete v. Does, 204 F.3d 1005, 1012 (10th Cir. 2000).
Here, Defendant fails to assert any of the grounds warranting a motion to reconsider. The
argument set forth in Defendant’s motion is based entirely upon the application of Colo. Rev.
Stat. § 5-12-102 to Plaintiff’s FDCPA claim. (Mot. at 2-5.) However, as Plaintiff noted in his
response, the legislature has not amended that statute since 1984. (Resp. at 3.) Thus, any
argument based on the same was clearly available to Defendant during the court’s initial
consideration of Plaintiff’s request for partial summary judgment. Defendant’s motion does not
present any evidence or argument that there has been a change in the controlling law, nor does it
identify a specific error in the court’s prior ruling. Servants of Paraclete, 204 F.3d at 1012.
Thus, Defendant has not demonstrated an entitlement to relief under Rule 59(e).
Accordingly, it is
ORDERED that Defendant’s “Motion to Reconsider Order Granting Partial Summary
Judgment” is DENIED.
Dated this 1st day of March, 2016.
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