West Virginia Record

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Pest control company, law firm say they were in their rights to pursue debt collection


By Kyla Asbury | Sep 12, 2019

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FAYETTEVILLE – Dodson Pest Control said it was within its right to attempt to collect an outstanding fee against a Fayette County woman who sued it and the legal firm it retained.

Ann Perdue alleged Sublett Pearson PLC and Dodson Brothers Exterminating Co. Inc. violated state law by attempting to collect fees. She filed the lawsuit on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated in Fayette Circuit Court against the two companies, alleging a violation of the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act.

Perdue was allegedly indebted to Dodson for $1,310.89, the lawsuit said. Sublett sent her debt collection letters on Dodson's behalf, seeking attorneys' fees and collection costs, the lawsuit said.

Perdue alleged the collection of or attempts to collect costs or expenses of the collection as a matter of public policy are prohibited in the state.

In its response, Sublett Pearson argued Perdue failed to state a claim and the lawsuit should be dismissed. It said any violation of state law, which it denied, was not intentional and that Perdue failed to mitigate any damages which she may have suffered. It also contended it acted in good faith.

Dodson also alleged that any violation of law was not intentional, but it also denied any violations and said it also acted in good faith.

"The matters of which Plaintiff complains were direct result of acts or inactions of Plaintiff or third-parties," Dodson wrote. "The matters of which Plaintiff complains were not caused by any action or inaction on the part of Dodson."

Perdue is seeking all reasonable sums due, attorney fees and court costs. The plaintiff is represented by Steven R. Broadwater Jr. and Ruperto Y. Dumapit of Hamilton, Burgess, Young & Pollard PLLC in Fayetteville.

The defendants are represented by Bruce M. Jacobs and Angela L. Beblo of Spilman Thomas & Battle in Charleston.

The case has been assigned to Judge Thomas Ewing.

Fayette Circuit Court case No. 19-C-56

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