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Heterosexual Massage Illegal In Denver – Until 1977

Posted on Feb 2, 2016 in Blog

Heterosexual Massage Illegal In Denver – Until 1977

A lot of states and cities have strange laws that remain on the books, largely unenforced. Denver is no exception. Until 1977, it was illegal to give a member of the opposite sex a massage, unless you had a doctor’s note. That’s right. Less than forty years ago, our city outlawed heterosexual massage. And Lois Mae Nelson was convicted of having administered massages to members of the opposite sex, in violation of Denver Revised Municipal Code 971.2-14 The city ordinance read as follows: “971.2-14. UNLAWFUL TO PRACTICE MASSAGE UPON PERSONS OF THE OPPOSITE SEX. It shall be unlawful for any licensee hereunder to practice or administer massage as defined herein upon a person of the opposite sex, unless said licensee shall be in possession of a written authorization or prescription signed by a physician or an osteopath registered in the state of Colorado which shall state the date of issue, the name of the licensee, the person upon whom such massage shall be administered and the duration of the period, not to exceed ninety (90) days, for which the licensee may practice or administer massage upon the person designated. (Ord. 57, Series 1962).” It took the Colorado Supreme Court in Denver v. Nielson, 572 P.2d 484 (Colo. 1977), to declare the ordinance unconstitutional. The Colorado Supreme Court held that: “The ordinance makes a conclusive presumption that all who massage persons of the opposite sex will engage in illicit sexual activity. Denver v. Nielson, 572 P.2d 484, 486 (1977). Nielson was decided on December 27, 1977. I propose that December 27th be forever known as “Colorado Heterosexual Massage Day”. Dan Vedra and Ahson Wali are consumer lawyers protecting consumer rights. If your town or city prohibits heterosexual massage, Vedra Wali LLC will stand up for your...

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Vedra Wali LLC Settles Consumer Class Action

Posted on Jan 26, 2016 in Blog

Vedra Wali LLC Settles Consumer Class Action

On December 22, 2015, the District Court for the District of Colorado approved a final class action settlement agreement with debt collection law firm Machol & Johanness. Alfred Trujillo, on behalf of a class of student loan borrowers, sued the law firm for adding attorney fees to already large student loan balances. The lawsuit alleged that the student loan credit agreements were governed by Ohio law. Under Ohio law, debt collectors are not permitted to add attorney fees to consumer debts. By adding attorney fees, the lawsuit alleged that the law firm used false, deceptive, and misleading representations to collect a debt, in violation of 15 U.S.C. § 1692e, and used unfair and unconscionable means to collect a debt, in violation of 15 U.S.C. § 1692f. As part of the settlement agreement, the law firm agreed to pay near the maximum statutory penalty to the class, and agreed to file a partial satisfaction of judgment for any consumer against whom the law firm had obtained a judgment and sought attorney fees. This reduces the amount owed for all consumers where the law firm obtained a judgment for attorney fees contrary to Ohio law, as alleged in the complaint. Vedra Wali LLC worked with Robert Murphy of the Law Office of Robert Murphy to obtain the settlement. Vedra Wali LLC is a consumer protection law firm. Dan Vedra and Ahson Wali represent individuals who are sued, harassed, and mistreated by debt collectors, banks, and...

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Bad Faith: Insurers Must Pay Indisputable Benefits

Posted on Sep 10, 2015 in Blog

Bad Faith: Insurers Must Pay Indisputable Benefits

The business of insurance is to collect premiums and not pay claims. Insurance companies do not make money by paying claims. An insurance company makes money by delaying payment on claims until the delay becomes unreasonable. If the delay becomes unreasonable, this is bad faith. Colorado law allows the insured to recover twice the covered benefit, plus reasonable attorney fees and costs. One tactic that an insurance company uses to delay benefit payments is to deny one portion of the claim to delay paying the whole claim. Now, this is also bad faith. In Fisher v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, the Colorado Court of Appeals held that an insurance company cannot delay paying a claim until the total claim is resolved. Instead, the insurance company must pay the amount that is not subject to a reasonable dispute. Thus, if an injured person claims $100,000.00 in damages, and the insurance company cannot reasonably dispute $20,000.00 of damages, the insurance company cannot delay payment of the $20,000.00 because the insurance company disputes the other $80,000.00. If it does, it commits bad faith. Insurance companies have armies of lawyers to defend them. Consumers have Dan Vedra and Ahson Wali to fight for their...

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Successful FDCPA Action

Posted on Jul 22, 2015 in Blog

Dan Vedra and Ahson Wali are proud to announce the successful prosecution of a Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) suit against Credit Bureau of Carbon County d/b/a CollectionCenter, Inc. In the case, the consumer contacted the debt collector on three separate occasions to notify the debt collector that insurance should have paid her medical bills. The Debt Collector maintained that arguing that insurance should have paid the bills was not a “dispute” within the meaning of Section 1692e(8). The Court found that “a statement that insurance should have paid an alleged debt is a dispute within the meaning of Section 1692e(8)” and “consistent with the plain meaning of ‘dispute'”. Because the FDCPA prohibits a debt collector from “[c]ommunicating or threatening to communicate to any person credit information which is known or which should be known to be false, including the failure to communicate that a disputed debt is disputed . . .”, the Debt Collector had an affirmative duty to report the dispute any time the Debt Collector reported the plaintiff’s debt to a credit bureau. The Debt Collector did not, and judgment entered against the Debt Collector. The District Court for the District of Colorado awarded the maximum amount of statutory damages allowed under the FDCPA. A copy of Judge Kane’s Findings of Fact and Conclusion of Law is available here. This is an important decision for consumers. Medical bills that are not correctly billed to insurance carriers are frequently turned over to debt collectors for collection. Although most hospitals do not report unpaid bills on a credit report, debt collectors do. This can harm a consumer’s credit rating and affect the consumer’s ability to obtain credit, afford insurance, and even gain employment. Debt collectors cannot turn a blind eye to disputes regarding insurance liability for a debt. As Congress long ago found, abusive debt collection practices contribute to the number of personal bankruptcies, to marital instability, to the loss of jobs, and to invasions of individual privacy. Dan Vedra and Ahson Wali are consumer lawyers who enforce consumer rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Fair Credit Reporting...

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False Advertising and Fake Yelp Reviews (Again!)

Posted on Feb 27, 2015 in Blog

False Advertising and Fake Yelp Reviews (Again!)

A while back, I wrote about the value of Yelp, but the cost of fake Yelp reviews. This lawyer is not the only one who takes notice of this problem, so do the lawyers at the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC recently announced that it has shut down an automobile shipment broker who deceptively paid customers to write fake online reviews. The business owner not only paid consumers to review services online, the owner also directed the consumers how to write the review. Then the owner deceptively represented the favorable reviews as the unbiased reviews of consumers. The FTC enforcement action was brought under the FTC’s enforcement authority under the FTC Act. Similar to the FTC Act, the Colorado Consumer Protection Act prohibits a person from knowingly making a false representation as to the source, sponsorship, approval, or certification of goods, services, or property. The CCPA also prohibits a person from knowingly making a false representation as to the characteristics, ingredients, uses, benefits, alterations, or quantities of goods, food, services, or property or a false representation as to the sponsorship, approval, status, affiliation, or connection of a person therewith. Victims of a false, misleading, and deceptive advertising are entitled to damages and attorney fees and costs for acting as a private attorney general to protect consumers. Vedra Wali LLC represents consumers who are the victims of false, deceptive, and misleading...

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FTC Shuts Down Yet Another Debt Collector

Posted on May 22, 2014 in Blog

FTC Shuts Down Yet Another Debt Collector

The Federal Trade Commission has shut down another debt collector. In a consent decree released today, the FTC announced that the owner of Houston based Goldman Schwartz, Inc. will surrender $550,000.00 in assets to pay restitution to victims of illegal debt collection practices. In 2013, a U.S. District Court shut down Goldman Schwartz, Inc. for multiple violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The debt collector assessed bogus fees, impersonated attorneys, harassed consumers, and threatened to jail consumers. The debt collector operated nationwide collecting primarily payday loans. As part of the consent decree, the principals of the debt collector agreed never to collect consumer debts...

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