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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 1 of 9

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND

(Greenbelt Division)

JULIETTE MURDOCH

Plaintiff,

v.

ROSENBERG & ASSOCIATES, LLC et al.,

Defendants.

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ANSWER

Civil Action No. 8:12-cv-02234-RWT

Defendant Rosenberg & Associates, LLC (“R&A”), by counsel, states the following for

its Answer to Plaintiff’s Complaint (“Complaint”):

1.

By Order dated March 22, 2013 (Docket No. 46), the Court (i) dismissed all

claims in Plaintiff’s Complaint against Defendant Diane Rosenberg, Esq. and terminated her as a

party to this action; (ii) dismissed all claims in Plaintiff’s Complaint except for Plaintiff’s claims

pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1692e of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act against Defendant R&A;

and (iii) struck the class action allegations in Plaintiff’s Complaint. Accordingly, no response to

those allegations in paragraph 1 is required. R&A denies that it violated any statute or applicable

law and demands strict proof thereof. The remaining allegations in paragraph 1 of Plaintiff’s

Complaint are legal conclusions to which no response is required, but to the extent any response

is required, R&A denies the allegations of paragraph 1 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

I.

THE PARTIES

2.

R&A lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of

the allegations in paragraph 2 of Plaintiff’s Complaint and, therefore, denies the same.

Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 2 of 9

3.

R&A lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of

the allegations in paragraph 3 of Plaintiff’s Complaint and, therefore, denies the same.

4.

R&A lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of

the allegations in paragraph 4 of Plaintiff’s Complaint and, therefore, denies the same.

5.

In response to paragraph 5, R&A admits that it is a limited liability company

organized under the laws of the state of Maryland, that it is authorized to conduct business in the

District of Columbia, Virginia, and Maryland, and that it sends notices to consumers. R&A

denies the remaining allegations in paragraph 5 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

6.

In response to paragraph 6, R&A admits that Diane Rosenberg, Esq., is the named

partner and managing member of R&A. R&A denies the remaining allegations in paragraph 6 of

Plaintiff’s Complaint.

JURISDICTION AND VENUE

7.

In response to paragraph 7, R&A adopts and incorporates by reference its

responses to the allegations contained in paragraphs 1 through 6 above.

8.

Paragraph 8 of Plaintiff’s Complaint contains legal conclusions to which no

response is required, but to the extent any response is required, R&A denies the allegations of

paragraph 8 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

9.

Paragraph 9 of Plaintiff’s Complaint contains legal conclusions to which no

response is required, but to the extent any response is required, R&A denies the allegations of

paragraph 9 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

10.

Denied.

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 3 of 9

11.

Paragraph 11 of Plaintiff’s Complaint contains legal conclusions to which no

response is required, but to the extent any response is required, R&A denies the allegations of

paragraph 11 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

12.

R&A lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of

the allegations in paragraph 12 of Plaintiff’s Complaint and, therefore, denies the same.

13.

In response to paragraph 13, R&A admits that Plaintiff has a mortgage debt

secured by property. R&A lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the

truth of the remaining allegations in paragraph 13 of Plaintiff’s Complaint and, therefore, denies

the same.

14.

Paragraph 14 of Plaintiff’s Complaint contains legal conclusions to which no

response is required, but to the extent any response is required, R&A lacks knowledge or

information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of the allegations in paragraph 14 of

Plaintiff’s Complaint and, therefore, denies the same.

15.

In response to paragraph 15, R&A admits that Plaintiff defaulted on a debt

secured by property, and that subsequently, Plaintiff’s mortgagee sent Plaintiff’s mortgage file to

R&A and requested that R&A begin a foreclosure proceeding pursuant to Maryland law. R&A

denies the remaining allegations in paragraph 15 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

16.

In response to paragraph 16, R&A states that the document identified as Exhibit A

to Plaintiff’s Complaint speaks for itself, and R&A denies any allegations inconsistent therewith.

17.

Denied.

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 4 of 9

(Violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act)

COUNT I

18.

In response to paragraph 18, R&A adopts and incorporates by reference its

responses to the allegations contained in paragraphs 1 through 17 above.

19.

Paragraph 19 of Plaintiff’s Complaint contains legal conclusions to which no

response is required, but to the extent any response is required, R&A denies the allegations of

paragraph 19 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

20.

Paragraph 20 contains Plaintiff’s characterization of

the letter attached to

Plaintiff’s Complaint as Exhibit A.

In response to these allegations, R&A states that the

document identified as Exhibit A speaks for itself, and R&A denies any allegations inconsistent

therewith.

21.

In response to paragraph 21, R&A states that the document identified as Exhibit A

to Plaintiff’s Complaint speaks for itself, and R&A denies any allegations inconsistent therewith.

22.

In response to paragraph 22, R&A states that the document identified as Exhibit A

to Plaintiff’s Complaint speaks for itself, and R&A denies any allegations inconsistent therewith.

23.

24.

25.

26.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Paragraph 26 contains Plaintiff’s characterization of

the letter attached to

Plaintiff’s Complaint as Exhibit A.

In response to these allegations, R&A states that the

document identified as Exhibit A speaks for itself, and R&A denies any allegations inconsistent

therewith.

27.

Denied.

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 5 of 9

28.

29.

30.

Denied.

Denied.

R&A admits that Diane S. Rosenberg, Esq. is the managing member of R&A and

that she gave a deposition in the case of Scales v. Wachovia in the Superior Court of the District

of Columbia. R&A denies the remaining allegations in paragraph 30 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

31.

32.

33.

34.

35.

36.

37.

38.

39.

40.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

(Violations of the Maryland Consumer Protection Act, the Maryland Debt Collection Act

and the District of Columbia Consumer Protection Procedures Act)

COUNTS II, III, and IV

41-44.

By Order dated March 22, 2013 (Docket No. 46), the Court (i) dismissed

all claims in Plaintiff’s Complaint against Defendant Diane Rosenberg, Esq. and terminated her

as a party to this action; (ii) dismissed all claims in Plaintiff’s Complaint except for Plaintiff’s

claims pursuant

to 15 U.S.C. § 1692e of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act against

Defendant R&A; and (iii) struck the class action allegations in Plaintiff’s Complaint. By Notice

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 6 of 9

of Voluntary Dismissal of Counts II and IV from Plaintiff’s Complaint, filed on August 8, 2012

(Docket No. 28), Plaintiff dismissed her claims under the Maryland Consumer Protection Act

and the District of Columbia Consumer Protection Procedures Act. Accordingly, no response to

the allegations in paragraphs 41 through 44 of Plaintiff’s Complaint is required, but to the extent

any response is required, R&A denies the allegations in paragraphs 41 through 44 of Plaintiff’s

Complaint.

CLASS ALLEGATIONS

45.-57.

By Order dated March 22, 2013 (Docket No. 46), the Court struck the

class action allegations in Plaintiff’s Complaint. Accordingly, no response to the allegations in

paragraphs 45 through 57 of Plaintiff’s Complaint is required, but to the extent any response is

required, R&A denies the allegations in paragraphs 45 through 57 of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS/APPLICATION OF THE DISCOVERY RULE

58.

59.

60.

61.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

Denied.

PRAYER FOR RELIEF

R&A denies that Plaintiff is entitled to the damages and relief requested in Plaintiff’s

“WHEREFORE” clause of the Complaint including subparts (A) through (F).

R&A denies all allegations contained in Plaintiff’s Complaint not expressly admitted

herein.

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 7 of 9

AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES

1.

Plaintiff’s Complaint fails to state a claim against R&A upon which relief may be

granted.

2.

Plaintiff’s Complaint fails because R&A followed proper procedures under the

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”).

3.

4.

R&A denies that it is liable to Plaintiff in any amount or for any reason.

Plaintiff’s damages, if any, were caused by the acts, negligence or fault of other

persons or entities for whom R&A is not legally liable or responsible.

5.

6.

7.

Plaintiff has failed to mitigate her damages, if any.

Plaintiff’s claims are barred by setoff and/or recoupment.

Plaintiff’s claims are barred by 15 U.S.C. § 1692k(c) because any alleged

violation was not

intentional and resulted from a bona fide error notwithstanding the

maintenance of procedures by R&A reasonably adapted to avoid any such error.

8.

Pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1692k(a)(3), R&A asserts that Plaintiff’s Complaint was

brought in bad faith and for the purpose of harassment, and R&A reserves the right to request an

award of attorney’s fees reasonable in relation to the work expended and costs.

9.

R&A will rely upon all other defenses that are revealed by further investigation,

discovery or the presentation of evidence and reserves the right to file an amended answer or

other appropriate pleading as permitted by this Court.

WHEREFORE, for the foregoing reasons, Rosenberg & Associates, LLC, respectfully

requests that Plaintiff’s Complaint be dismissed with prejudice and that Rosenberg & Associates,

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 8 of 9

LLC be awarded its costs and expenses, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, and all other relief

the Court deems appropriate.

Dated: April 25, 2013

Respectfully submitted,

ROSENBERG & ASSOCIATES, LLC

/s/ Laurin H. Mills

Laurin H. Mills (MD Fed. Bar No. 09462)
LeClairRyan, A Professional Corporation
2318 Mill Road, Suite 1100
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 647-5903 (telephone)
(703) 647-5953 (facsimile)
[email protected]

Megan S. Ben’Ary
J. Douglas Cuthbertson
(admitted pro hac vice)
LeClairRyan, A Professional Corporation
2318 Mill Road, Suite 1100
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 684-8007 (telephone)
(703) 684-8075 (facsimile)
[email protected]
[email protected]

Attorneys for the Defendants

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Case 8:12-cv-02234-RWT Document 50 Filed 04/25/13 Page 9 of 9

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I hereby certify that on April 25, 2013, I filed a copy of the forgoing using the Court’s

CM/ECF system, which sent an electronic copy to:

Ian Stumpf, Esq.
JR HOWELL & ASSOCIATES
1325 G Street, NW
Suite 500
Washington, DC 20005
[email protected]

/s/ Laurin H. Mills

Laurin H. Mills (MD Fed. Bar No. 09462)
LeClairRyan, A Professional Corporation
2318 Mill Road, Suite 1100
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 647-5903 (telephone)
(703) 647-5953 (facsimile)
[email protected]

Attorney for the Defendants

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