United States District Court, D. Minnesota
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
A. MAGNUSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on Defendants' Second Motion
to Dismiss or in the Alternative for a More Definite
Statement. For the following reasons, the Motion is denied.
Court stated the relevant facts of this case in an order
following Defendant Matthew Engel's previous motion to
dismiss, and will not repeat those facts here. (July 18, 2017
Order (Docket No. 25.) This matter stems from numerous
interactions between Plaintiff Savanna Worley and Engel, an
attorney who represented landlords in three separate eviction
actions against Worley in Minnesota state court. Worley
alleges that Engel violated the Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act (“FDCPA”), 15 U.S.C. § 1692,
by attempting to collect rent, court costs, and fees from
her, and failing to communicate to her information required
of a debt collector. (2d Am. Compl. (Docket No. 26).)
previously moved to dismiss Worley's Amended Complaint,
which raised only one claim, arguing that the
Rooker-Feldman doctrine barred the claim
and that Worley failed to state a claim on which relief can
be granted because he is not a debt collector and Worley did
not allege any communications under the FDCPA. In the
alternative, Engel moved for a more definite statement.
Court denied in part Engel's motion to dismiss,
concluding that the Rooker-Feldman doctrine
did not apply, that Engel qualified as a debt collector under
the FDCPA, and that the Amended Complaint included numerous
allegations of communications under the FDCPA. (Order at 4,
6-8.) But because the Amended Complaint was poorly drafted,
the Court directed Worley to file a second amended complaint
“that brings distinct claims for each alleged violation
of the FDCPA, accompanied by the factual allegations that
support those claims.” (Id. at 9.)
filed her five-count Second Amended Complaint on August 7,
2017. Count I contends that Engel violated 15 U.S.C. §
1692e(2)(A) by “falsely represent[ing] the character,
amount, and legal status of [Worley]'s alleged
debt.” (2d Am. Compl. ¶¶ 52-53.) Count II
alleges that Engel “attempted to collect an alleged
debt through false or deceptive means in violation of 15
U.S.C. § 1692e(10).” (Id. ¶¶
54-55.) Count III claims that Engel violated 15 U.S.C. §
1692e(11) by failing to disclose that he was a debt
collector. (Id. ¶¶ 56-57.) Count IV
alleges that Engel violated 15 U.S.C. § 1692f(1) by
attempting to collect a debt that was not authorized by law.
(Id. ¶¶ 58-59.) And Count V contends that
Engel violated 15 U.S.C. § 1692g by failing to provide
Worley with any of the information mandated by 15 U.S.C.
§ 1692g(a). (Id. ¶¶ 60-61.)
then filed a second Motion to Dismiss, arguing that issue or
claim preclusion bars Worley's allegations and that she
failed to allege any communication that violated the FDCPA.
In the alternative, he again moves for a more definitive
Failure to State a Claim
moves the Court to dismiss the Second Amended Complaint for
failure to state a claim, arguing that Worley's claims
are barred by either res judicata or do not sufficiently
allege communications that violate the FDCPA.
evaluating a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), the Court
assumes the allegations in the Second Amended Complaint to be
true and construes all reasonable inferences from those facts
in the light most favorable to the non-moving party.
Morton v. Becker, 793 F.2d 185, 187 (8th Cir. 1986).
The Court need not accept as true wholly conclusory
allegations, Hanten v. Sch. Dist. of Riverview
Gardens, 183 F.3d 799, 805 (8th Cir. 1999), or legal
conclusions that the plaintiff draws from the facts pled.
Westcott v. City of Omaha, 901 F.2d 1486, 1488 (8th
complaint must contain “enough facts to state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face” to survive a
motion to dismiss. Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 570 (2007). Although a complaint need not contain
“detailed factual allegations, ” it must contain
facts with enough specificity “to raise a right to
relief above the speculative level.” Id. at
555. “Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action, supported by mere conclusory statements, ” will
not pass muster under Twombly. Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (citing
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). This standard
“calls for enough fact[s] to raise a reasonable
expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of [the
claim].” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556. Dismissal
at the pleading stage on the basis of res judicata “is
appropriate if the defense is apparent on the face of the
complaint.” Magee v. Hamline Univ., 775 F.3d
1057, 1058-59 (8th Cir. 2015) (citing C.H. Robinson
Worldwide, Inc. v. Lobrano, 695 F.3d 758, 763-64 (8th