United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION & ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS' MOTION
Sean F. Cox Judge
Ryan Currier (“Plaintiff”) brought this action
pursuant to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act
(“TCPA”), the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
(“FDCPA”), the Michigan Occupational Code
(“MOC”), and the Michigan Collection Practices
Act (“MCPA”). On February 23, 2017, this Court
entered an Opinion and Order granting in part and denying in
part Plaintiff's partial motion for summary judgment.
(Doc. # 170, O&O).
matter is currently before Defendants PDL Recovery Group and
Jamie Belstadt's Motion for Reconsideration, brought
pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(b). (Doc. #
171, Def.s' Br.). Defendants take issue with the
Court's decision to hold Defendant Belstadt personally
liable under the FDCPA and MOC and the Court's decision
to consider one of the exhibits attached to Plaintiff's
motion for summary judgment. Plaintiff has responded to
Defendants' motion. (Doc. # 175). Having reviewed the
substance of Defendants' motion, this Court shall
DENY the Motion for Reconsideration.
Rule of Civil Procedure 54(b) states:
[A]ny order or other form of decision, however designated,
which adjudicates fewer than all of the claims ... shall not
terminate the action ... and the order or other form of
decision is subject to revision at any time before the entry
of judgment adjudicating all the claims and the rights and
liabilities of all the parties.
Sixth Circuit has held that “[t]raditionally, courts
will find justification for reconsidering interlocutory
orders when there is (1) an intervening change of controlling
law; (2) new evidence available; or (3) a need to correct a
clear error or prevent manifest injustice.”
Rodriguez v. Tenn. Laborers Health & Welfare
Fund, 89 Fed. App'x 949, 959 (6th Cir. 2004).
# 1. First, Defendants argue that the Court erred in
concluding that Defendant Belstadt could be held personally
liable under the FDCPA on the basis of his general
participation in the debt collection activities of PDL. In
reaching this conclusion, the Court relied on the Sixth
Circuit's decision in Kistner v. Law Offices of
Michael P. Margelefsky, 518 F.3d 433 (6th Cir. 2008),
for the proposition that a member of an LLC can be held
personally liable under the FDCPA so long as the employee
individually qualifies as a debt collector.
Defendants do not dispute that an LLC member may be
personally liable if he qualifies as a debt collector.
However, Defendants argue that the “correct
interpretation of Kistner should be that personal
liability can only be imposed, without piercing the corporate
veil, when an employee, shareholder, officer, or director
violates the Act as a ‘debt collector.'”
(Def.s' Br. at 3). Defendants then rely on several
decisions, from outside of the Sixth Circuit, for
the proposition that “personal involvement is a
prerequisite to a finding of individual liability.”
(Id. at 5). Defendants then summarily conclude that
because Belstadt did not materially participate in the
alleged violations, he cannot be held liable.
argument, however, has been specifically rejected by the
Sixth Circuit in Kistner:
In other words, contrary to [defendant's] argument that
he cannot be personally liable because he did not participate
in sending the specific letter to [plaintiff], he may be
personally liable on the basis of his participation in the
debt collection activities of the LLC more generally.
Kistner, 518 F.3d at 437 (emphasis added).
are also wrong when they assert that the “Court's
opinion relies on no evidence to suggest that Belstadt
formulated and implemented a business practice that resulted
in an FDCPA violation.” (Def.s' Br. at 4).
Defendants conveniently ignore the portion of the Opinion