Question about punitive damages in a FDCPA case

When a judge or arbitrator considers punitive damages against a collector, do they go by the actions in that particular case, or do they look at the collector's bad history with FTC, attorney general and such?

Tarzana, CA -

Attorney Answers (3)

Eric Charles Lewis

Eric Charles Lewis

Bankruptcy Attorney - Indianapolis, IN
Answered

Typically, it is case specific but if the action is part of a bigger trend, a court can and will look at the bigger picture.

Advice on this forum is for informational purposes only and should never be mistaken as a substitute for legal... more
John Addison Vos

John Addison Vos

Bankruptcy Attorney - San Rafael, CA
Answered

All of the above. The Court looks at the behavior specifically to you, more generally as to the public, AND the overall assets and ability to pay of the Defendant. To win big, you have to show big.

This is general legal information, not intended to apply to your specific case. And I may not be licensed to... more
Richard Scott Lysle

Richard Scott Lysle

Debt Collection Attorney - Los Angeles, CA
Answered

Punitive damages are rarely awarded. You must show by "clear and convincing" evidence that the defendant engaged in despicable conduct, with malice, oppression or fraud. Typically, punitive damages are not awarded on FDCPA causes of action but may be awarded on related common law cause of action.

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