An estimated 720 different collection agencies and creditors were sued between May 16-31, according to data from U.S. District courts. The number is up from the May 1-15 total of 605.

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) lawsuits filed this year through May totaled 4,640, down 6.4% from last year's pace of 4,956, according to WebRecon LLC, a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based firm that tracks the data from the courts.

Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) lawsuits both continue to show strong growth over a year ago with each statute on track to easily surpass last year numbers.

TCPA lawsuits totaled 423 through May, up 31.4% from 322 a year ago. FCRA claims reached 977 through May, up 81.6% from 538 a year ago. Truth-in-Lending Act (TILA) lawsuits totaled 402 through May, down 25.6% from 540 a year ago.

For the May 16-31 period, there were about 605 total lawsuits filed under consumer statutes - including 538 FDCPA cases, 119 FCRA claims, 40 TCPA lawsuits and 83 TILA cases. Of the total, there were an estimated 702 unique plaintiffs, including 230 who had previously sued under consumer statutes. Combined, since 2001, those plaintiffs have filed an estimated 1,346 lawsuits.

Robin R. Horner (53 cases) and Arshak Bartoumian (23) were the most active attorneys in the second half of May. The top courts for filings in the May 16-31 period include: California Central District Court, Western Division, Los Angeles (41), Illinois Northern District Court, Chicago (39) and New York Eastern District Court, Brooklyn (36).

Consumer litigation against collection agencies and creditors in 2011 set several records - including cases citing the FDCPA, Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and Truth-in-Lending Act (TILA) (see story).

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