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Unpublished Paper
Brief of Amici Curiae in Support of Appellant, James Townsend v. Midland Funding, LLC
Court Briefs
  • Stuart Robert Cohen, AARP Foundation Litigation
  • Peter A. Holland, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law
Document Type
Brief
Publication Date
9-23-2013
Keywords
  • credit card debt,
  • debt buyers,
  • debt collection,
  • FDCPA,
  • Amicus,
  • Clinic,
  • small claims,
  • Maryland Rules,
  • Maryland Rules of Professional Conduct,
  • Maryland Code of Judicial Conduct,
  • consumer protection
Comments

Filed in the Maryland Court of Appeals. On appeal from the Circuit Court for Baltimore City 24-C-13-001033 (Honorable Pamela J. White).

Amici Curiae AARP, The University of Maryland Law School Consumer Protection Clinic, Civil Justice, Inc., Maryland Legal Aid Bureau, Inc., The National Association of Consumer Advocates, The National Consumer Law Center, and The Public Justice Center, In Support of Appellant.

Abstract

The Consumer Protection Clinic of the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, filed a Motion to Participate and an Amicus Brief in the case of Townsend v. Midland Funding, LLC. The case presents the question of whether documents created by third party predecessors in interest—usually a bank—may be admitted into evidence when a debt buyer plaintiff does not demonstrate personal knowledge regarding any of the foundational elements which would be required to admit the documents under the business records exception to the hearsay rule. Amici urge the Court to overturn the lower court, and hold that a debt buyer’s documents may not be admitted into evidence without the debt buyer first laying the proper foundation for the business records exception to the hearsay rule. The Clinic was joined by AARP, the National Consumer Law Center, the National Association of Consumer Advocates, and by the Maryland Legal Aid Bureau and Maryland's Public Justice Center. The Brief deals with the problems of data integrity and the lack of competent, reliable evidence in lawsuits filed purchasers of charged off credit card debt, known as "debt buyers." The Consumer Protection Clinic and other amici examine due process and professionalism concerns which arise when our courts (primarily Maryland's District Court) do not strictly apply the special evidentiary and procedural rules which exist for small claims actions.

Citation Information
Stuart Robert Cohen and Peter A. Holland. "Brief of Amici Curiae in Support of Appellant, James Townsend v. Midland Funding, LLC" (2013)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/peter_holland/8/