United States District Court, D. New Mexico
JOSEPH A. TRENTON, Plaintiff,
EXPERIAN INFORMATION SOLUTIONS, INC., TRANS UNION, LLC, EQUIFAX INFORMATION SERVICES, LLC, HEALTHCARE COLLECTIONS, LLC DELIVERY FINANCIAL SERVICES, A 1 COLLECTIONS, LLC, and CREDIT COLLECTION SERVICES, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT
HEALTHCARE COLLECTIONS-I, L.L.C.'S MOTION TO
Healthcare Collections-I, LLC (HCI) asks the Court to dismiss
it from this case because it received service of process that
was intended for named defendant “Healthcare
Collections LLC.” See DEFENDANT HEALTHCARE
COLLECTIONS-I, L.L.C.'S MOTION TO DISMISS (Doc. No. 28)
(Motion). To date, pro se Plaintiff Joseph Amaziah Trenton
(Plaintiff) has not filed a response to the Motion.
Specifically, HCI asks the Court to dismiss it as a party or
acknowledge that HCI is not a party defendant in this case
because HCI has no association “with any business
identified as Healthcare Collections, LLC.” (Mot. at
1.) Based on the record in this case and the public records
related to HCI, the Court will deny the Motion without
10, 2018, Plaintiff pro se brought his ORIGINAL COMPLAINT
(Doc. No. 1) (Complaint) alleging that Defendants violated
the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), 15 U.S.C. §§
1681 et seq. and the Fair Debt Collection Practices
Act (FDCPA), 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq. On July
16, 2018, Magistrate Judge Laura Fashing granted
Plaintiff's application to proceed in forma
pauperis. See MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
(Doc. No. 4). After filing the Complaint, Plaintiff was able
to effect service of process on Defendants Experian
Information Solutions, LLC and Equifax Information Services,
LLC. On March 20, 2019, Magistrate Judge Fashing ordered
Plaintiff to provide physical addresses for the Defendants
who had not been served. See ORDER TO PROVIDE
PHYSICAL ADDRESSES (Doc. No. 13). On April 11, 2019,
Magistrate Judge Fashing ordered the United States
Marshal's Service to personally serve the Defendants at
those addresses. See ORDER TO SERVE (Doc. No. 15)
(citing 28 U.S.C. § 1915(d)). In relevant part, the
Order to Serve stated that service is to be made on
“Healthcare Collections LLC” at “2432 W.
Peoria Ave. Phoenix, AZ 85029.” (Id. at 2.)
9, 2019, a United States Marshal filed a PROCESS RECEIPT AND
RETURN (Doc. No. 23) (Process Return) indicating that a
United States Marshal served Mr. Mac Johnson, Compliance
Officer for “Healthcare Collections” at 2224 W.
Northern Avenue, Phoenix, AZ.
15, 2019, Plaintiff filed a NOTICE OF VOLUNTARY DISMISSAL OF
DEFENDANT A-1 COLLECTIONS, LLC WITHOUT PREJUDICE (Doc. No.
38) (Notice). In the Notice, Plaintiff voluntarily dismissed
this action “against HEALTHCARE COLLECTIONS LTD,
Limited Liability Company, dba A-1 Collection Agency,
Motion, HCI contends that “[a] United States Marshal
delivered a copy of a summons from this matter to HCI at its
principal place of business in Peoria,
Arizona.” (Mot. at 1.) The address indicated on the
Process Receipt (2224 W. Northern Ave.) for HCI is also
listed on the Arizona Corporation Commission's website as
HCI's principal place of business. See
(last visited July 1, 2019). However, there is an inactive
entity listed on the Arizona Corporation Commission's
website that is named Healthcare Collections, Inc. The
website lists Healthcare Collection, Inc.'s address as
2432 W. Peoria Avenue, Phoenix AZ, the same address provided
for Healthcare Collections LLC on Magistrate Judge
Fashing's Order to Serve. See
(last visited July 1, 2019). Mr. Paul Peach is listed as CEO,
President, and a Director of Healthcare Collections, Inc.
Id. Mr. Peach is listed as a Manager of HCI.
(last visited July 1, 2019).
HCI correctly claims it has no association with “any
business identified as Healthcare Collections, LLC[, ]”
it appears that HCI may have an association with Healthcare
Collections, Inc. In addition to HCI and Healthcare
Collections, Inc., the Arizona Corporation Commission's
website lists two other entities with similar names:
Healthcare Collections Ltd, Limited Liability Company, which
has been dismissed, and Healthcare Collections Services, Inc.
The Arizona Corporation Commission website lists no address
for Healthcare Collection Services, Inc.
summary, there appear to be three entities with similar names
that are connected to this case: (1) HCI, which was served at
its address 2224 W. Northern Avenue in Phoenix; (2)
Healthcare Collections, Inc., whose address is 2432 W. Peoria
Avenue in Phoenix-the address provided in the Order to Serve;
and (3) Healthcare Collections Ltd, Limited Liability Company
dba A-1 Collection Agency, LLC, which has been served and
which Plaintiff voluntarily dismissed from this action.
Motion states the following:
A United States Marshal delivered a copy of a summons from
this matter to HCI at its principal place of business in
Peoria, Arizona. However, the named defendant on the summons
and in this case is Healthcare Collections, LLC, and not HCI.
HCI is not associated with any business identified as
Healthcare Collections, LLC and does not have authority to
accept service on behalf of Healthcare Collections, LLC.
It appears that plaintiff has either named or served
the wrong party.
(Mot. at 1) (emphasis added). HCI further states,
“[a]lthough not named as a defendant, HCI submits this
responsive pleading within the deadline to do so after being
served with the summons and moves the Court for an order
dismissing it as a party in this lawsuit.”
(Id.) However, HCI has not indicated the rule or
legal authority that supports dismissal.
of service is a precondition to suit....” Jenkins
v. City of Topeka, 136 F.3d 1274, 1275 (10th Cir. 1998).
Without proof of service, the Court lacks personal
jurisdiction over the Defendant. Potter v. Johnson,
13-CV-00116-PAB-NYW, 2015 WL 1258653, at *3 (D. Colo. Mar.
17, 2015) (unpublished). Rule 4 provides in relevant part
that a summons must be served with a copy of the complaint.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(c)(1). A Marshal must be ordered to serve if
the plaintiff is proceeding in forma pauperis.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(c)(3). Under Rule 4(h), a corporate entity may
be served by delivering a copy of the summons and complaint
to an officer, managing agent, or general agent. Proof of
service must be made to the court. Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(1)(1).
“If a defendant is not served within 90 days after the
complaint is filed, the court-on motion or on its own after
notice to the plaintiff-must dismiss the action without
prejudice against that defendant or order that service be
made within a specified time.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(m).
governs motions to dismiss for insufficiency of service. A
“Rule 12(b)(5) motion challenges the mode of delivery
or the lack of delivery of the summons and complaint.”
Ueding v. Chris, 17-CV-01365-KLM, 2018 WL 4680343,
at *3 (D. Colo. Sept. 28, 2018) (unpublished) (quoting 5B The
Late Charles Alan Wright, et al., Federal Practice
& Procedure § 1353 (3d ed.)). A motion
under Rule 12(b)(4) concerns the form of the process rather
than the manner or method of its service. Technically, a Rule
12(b)(4) motion is proper only to challenge noncompliance
with the provisions of Rule 4(b) or any applicable provision
that deals specifically with the content of the summons. 5B
The Late Charles Alan Wright, et al., Federal
Practice & Procedure § 1353 (3d ed.).
See also Dixie Restaurants, Inc. v. Philips Consumer
Electronics Co., No. 02-2461 D/A, 2005 WL 948802, at * 3
(M.D. Tenn. Feb. 18, 2005) (unpublished) (denying pretrial
challenge under Rule 12(b)(4) that plaintiff ...