On June 1, 2017, Colorado reenacted the Colorado Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“CFDCPA”), and amended the definition of “collection agency” to include “debt buyers.” The bill reenacting the CFDCPA generally became effective upon passage, although certain provisions have a delayed effective date, as discussed below.
By way of background, the prior version of the CFDCPA included a sunset provision that provided for automatic repeal on July 1, 2017. The reenacted version of the CFDCPA extends the sunset provision to September 1, 2028. The revised bill also defines “debt buyers” as someone “who engages in the business of purchasing delinquent or defaulted debt for collection purposes, whether it collects the debt itself, hires a third party for collection, or hires an attorney for litigation in order to collect the debt.” Debt buyers are considered “collection agencies” for purposes of the CFDCPA. This amendment takes effect on January 1, 2018.
As amended, the CFDCPA requires that a debt collector or collection agency who brings a legal action on a debt owned by a debt buyer must attach various pieces of documentation to the complaint, including a copy of the contract or other documentation showing that the debt was incurred by the consumer, a copy of the assignment establishing that the debt buyer is the owner of the debt, and, prior to entry of a default judgment, documentation establishing the amount and nature of the debt in accordance with the applicable provisions of the Colorado Rules of Evidence. The above requirements apply to debts sold or resold after January 1, 2018.
Additionally, the regulator is required to prepare a report on a biannual basis addressing topics such as the number and type of consumer complaints, enforcement actions, significant legal filings, and any significant changes or matters that need to be addressed. The regulator is required to meet with industry participants and consumer advocacy groups to facilitate information sharing and solicit relevant information.
The final bill is available here.