United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
R. GRAND UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN
PART DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
GERSHWIN A. DRAIN UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE
Bonita Grier, proceeding pro se, initiated this
civil action against Defendant Mid-Michigan Credit Bureau,
alleging violations of both the Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1692, and the Fair Credit
Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1861. Dkt. No. 17. Defendant
has moved for judgment on the pleadings pursuant to Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(c), asserting Plaintiff's
Complaint fails to allege any facts in support of her claims.
before the Court is Defendant's Motion for Judgment on
the Pleadings. Dkt. No. 31. The Motion is fully briefed, and
Court will decide the matter without a hearing. See
E.D. Mich. LR 7.1(f)(2). For the reasons set forth below, the
Court will GRANT the Motion IN PART and DENY the Motion IN
2014, Plaintiff was hospitalized at Providence Hospital in
Southfield, Michigan. Dkt. No. 17, p. 10 (Pg. ID 75). In
2015, Defendant began contacting Plaintiff to collect on
unpaid bills in connection with that medical care.
Id. Plaintiff asserts that between 2015 and October
2017, Defendant “repeatedly and continuously contacted
[her] by phone to harass her regarding the asserted
debt.” Id. Plaintiff maintains that she does
not owe any debt, as Medicare and her medical insurance
should have covered her expenses. Id. at p. 11 (Pg.
ID 76). Further, that she conveyed this information to
Defendant over the phone and by submitting a dispute through
Defendant's online contact system. Id. Despite
this, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant ignored her repeated
requests to cease communications, and instead, continued to
call her by phone to harass, annoy, and abuse her.
Id. Plaintiff thus alleges that Defendant violated
both the FDCPA and the FCRA. Defendant, in turn, has moved
for judgment on the pleadings pursuant to Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 12(c).
Rule 12(c) motion is granted when no material issue of fact
exists and the party making the motion is entitled to
judgment as a matter of law.” JPMorgan
Chase Bank, N.A. v. Winget, 510 F.3d 577, 582 (6th
Cir. 2007) (internal quotations and citations omitted).
“The factual allegations in the complaint need to be
sufficient to give notice to the defendant as to what claims
are alleged, and the plaintiff must plead ‘sufficient
factual matter' to render the legal claim plausible,
i.e., more than merely possible.” Fritz v. Charter
Tp. of Comstock, 592 F.3d 718, 722 (6th Cir. 2010)
(citing Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949-50
(2009)). While all well-pleaded material allegations of the
pleadings of the opposing party must be taken as true,
Sage Int'l v. Cadillac Gage Co., 556 F.Supp.
381, 383 (E.D. Mich. 1982), that is not the case for a legal
conclusion couched as a factual allegation, Fritz,
592 F.3d at 722.
on a motion under Rule 12(b)(6) or 12(c), matters outside the
pleadings are presented to and not excluded by the court, the
motion must be treated as one for summary judgment under Rule
56.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(d). However, “[f]airness
dictates that, absent some persuasive justification, the
moving party should be able to obtain the benefit of the
particular rule he or she has chosen to move under.”
Wilson v. Karnes, 2007 WL 4207154, at *3 (S.D. Ohio
Nov. 26, 2007). To that end, “[d]istrict courts have
broad discretion to accept or reject matters outside the
pleadings that are presented on Rule 12(c) motions, and will
be reversed only for an abuse of that discretion.”
Id. at *2 (citing Max Arnold & Sons, LLC v.
W. L. Hailey & Co., Inc., 452 F.3d 494, 503 (6th
has moved for judgment on the pleadings under Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 12(c), asserting Plaintiff's Complaint
fails to allege sufficient facts in support of her claims.
Plaintiff opposes this Motion, and additionally, has
submitted a signed declaration supplementing the allegations
in her Complaint.
initial matter, the Court will not consider Plaintiff's
declaration for purposes of the pending Motion. First, the
Court has already permitted Plaintiff to amend her Complaint
on one occasion. See Dkt. No. 20. And second,
fairness dictates that Defendant should be granted the
benefit of obtaining relief under the rule in which it
brought the instant Motion. Accordingly, the Court will not
convert Defendant's Motion to one for summary judgment
under Rule 56. Instead, the Court will recognize only the
allegations in Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint.
See Dkt. No. 17.
While Plaintiff Fails to Allege Sufficient Facts to State a
Claim Under § 1692d(5) of the Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act, she has Pled Sufficient ...