Eric is one of the country’s prominent Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) defense attorneys, having served as lead defense counsel on over 30 nationwide TCPA class actions and having handled hundreds of individual TCPA cases. He also “wrote the book” on TCPA defense, having co-authored the nation’s first comprehensive practice guide on the subject. In addition, he has helped spearhead the banking industry’s push for TCPA clarity before the Federal Communications Commission and has assisted on numerous appeals addressing hot-button TCPA issues.
With such a deep litigation background, Eric helps his clients see the broader view and chart cohesive national litigation strategies that work. He works with a team of dedicated litigators and a nationwide network of local counsel to help defend banks and finance companies in litigation throughout the country, and has been admitted pro hac vice in nearly two dozen jurisdictions. He’s also an accomplished trial lawyer, having earned a multi-million dollar jury verdict and several defense verdicts for some of the country’s largest banks and finance companies.
Eric has also handled a diverse range of individual and class cases including claims under the FCRA, CCRA, CLRA, FDCPA, RFDCPA, FCCPA, UCC, California Penal Code Section 632, UCL, Washington CPA, TILA, RESPA, HOBOR, complex business disputes, fraud, and bank operations.
Experience aside, Eric is a litigator of uncanny creativity. He commonly dreams up new angles to attack old problems, and helps his clients solve their biggest litigation challenges with fresh ideas and agile thinking. He enjoys nothing more than rolling out a brand new legal argument that earns a first-in-the-nation result.
His practice focuses on financial services litigation, general and complex commercial litigation and appellate work.
Eric has successfully defeated class certification of a “wrong number” and “do not call” data class in a putative nationwide TCPA class action against a major auto finance company with millions of customers.
Eric has successfully earned dismissal of a high-call volume individual TCPA revocation case by leveraging Reyes v Lincoln Financial and arguing that contractual consent clause is irrevocable.
For instance in Masters v. Wells Fargo Bank South Central, No. A-12-CA- 376-SS, 2013 WL 3713492, (W.D. Tex. July 11, 2013)) Eric earned the nation’s first post-Genesis dismissal of a Rule 23 class based upon the mootness of a named representative’s claims.
In Aderhold v. Car2Go N.A., LLC, Case No. C13-489RAJ 2014 (U.S.D.C. W.D. Wash. 2014) the Court dismissed a suit in favor of Eric's client finding that the contours of “express consent” were broad enough to encompass instances where a customer received a text message after providing a cellular number as part of an online registration process.
In Conrad v. Gen. Motors Acceptance Corp., 2012 WL 2551146 (N.D. Tex. 2012) Eric and a team of attorneys defeated a TCPA certification motion demonstrating that individualized inquiries swarmed common issues because “putative class members could have given consent by providing the cell phone number at the time of application, via a phone conversation with a customer service agent, via an email, via interface with the website, or during an in person field call by a skip trace agent.”
In Heinrichs v. Wells Fargo Case No. C 13-05434 WHA (N.D. Cal. April 15, 2014) Eric earned a stay of proceedings in favor of Wells Fargo in a class action based upon the FCC’s primary jurisdiction to determine the meaning of the phrase “called party” for purposes of the TCPA’s express consent exemption. He subsequently travelled to Washington D.C. to personally meet with the FCC’s staff regarding the issue and to advocate for common sense clarifications that would help assure a uniform rule of law across the country.
Additionally, Eric and Severson & Werson attorney Jan T. Chilton prepared the amicus briefing in support of a petition for rehearing in the case of Meyer v. Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC, 696 F. 3d 943 (9th Cir. 2012). In that case the Ninth Circuit had erroneously interpreted an FCC declaratory ruling as only presuming express consent when a debtor provides a number “at the time” of application. See Id. at 948 (“prior express consent is deemed granted only if the wireless telephone number was provided by the consumer to the creditor, and only if it was provided at the time of the transaction that resulted in the debt at issue.”) Recognizing that this ruling could have a disastrous effect on TCPA compliance efforts, industry filed an amicus brief asking the Ninth Circuit to modify its ruling. As a result the Ninth Circuit, indeed, modified its opinion to clarify that debt collectors can rely on consent given any time before a call is placed. See Meyer v. Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC, 707 F. 3d 1036, 1040 (9th Cir. 2012) (“prior express consent is consent to call a particular telephone number in connection with a particular debt that is given before the call in question is placed.”)
Eric has also earned summary judgment rulings on behalf of clients sued under the TCPA on the grounds that the device they used to place the calls at issue was not an “ATDS” as defined by the statute.
News & Resources
News & Press Mentions
- Certification of Class Actions Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Prohibition against “Fail-Safe” Classes, 68 Con.Fin. Serv. L. Rep. 326 (2014) - Consumer Finance Law Quarterly Report (With Scott)
- Staying TCPA Cases Under the Primary Jurisdiction Doctrine, 68 Con.Fin. Serv. L. Rep. 312 (2014)- Consumer Finance Law Quarterly Report (With Scott and Divya)
- Don’t Misdial. . . The Strange Story of How Your Smartphone Became An Autodialer and why that could end up costing you a lot of dough- Casetext
- Rivals defeat TCPA claims on home turf as Yahoo! takes big loss in the Third Circuit- Casetext
- American Conference Institute- The Latest Legal and Case Law Developments TCPA Consent and Dialers. April, 2015
- CBA Live- TCPA Exploitation- What it Means to You, March, 2015
- THE FCC’S 2015 TCPA RULING: THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY- Client presentation- August, 2015
- AFSA Webinar- “The Telephone Consumer Protection Act”
- General client presentation “The Telephone Consumer Protection Act”- 2014 and 2015 ed.,
Industries & Practices
- Bankruptcy & Financial Restructuring
- Class Action Litigation
- Commercial Litigation
- Consumer Financial Services
- Cybersecurity, Privacy & Social Media
- Financial Services Regulatory
- Securities & Financial Services Litigation & Enforcement
- Telephone Consumer Protection Act