In a recent decision of Thornton v. Wolpoff and Abramson, No. 07-12016, by the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, the court rejected Wolpoff and Abramson’s argument that the Ms. Thornton’s attorney should not receive the Court ordered attorney fees as required by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) to a successful plaintiff.
Ms. Thornton had sued Wolpoff for violations of the FDCPA related to Wolpoff’s collection activities surrounding a balance on a credit card bill that had belonged to her ex-husband. The jury found that Wolpoff had violated the law, but only awarded Ms. Thornton nominal damages in the amount of $1.
After the trial, the court awarded Ms. Thornton’s attorney fees at a rate of $250 per hour and in the amount of $7,500. This was significantly less that what was asked for by the plaintiff, due to the court’s finding that the case could have been settled by the parties at an early stage of the litigation for a nominal amount of money. It was also significantly more that asked for by Wolpoff.