BANK OF AMERICA, N.A.
Submitted On Briefs: October 13, 2016
Camire, appellant pro se
E. Conley, Esq., Susan J. Szwed, P.A., Portland, for appellee
Bank of America, N.A.
ALEXANDER, MEAD, GORMAN, JABAR, HJELM, and HUMPHREY, JJ.
John Camire appeals from a judgment of the District Court
(Biddeford, Cantara, J.) entered in favor of Bank of
America, N.A. (the Bank). The judgment arises out of an
outstanding credit card debt. We affirm the judgment in favor
of the Bank, but because we conclude that the trial court
erred in dismissing Camires counterclaim, we vacate that
portion of the judgment and remand the case for further
On March 24, 2014, FIA Card Services, N.A., initiated this
action in the District Court (Biddeford) against John Camire
to recover damages totaling $11, 573.40 arising out of a debt
incurred using a Bank of America credit card. Camire
answered, moved to dismiss the complaint, and asserted
various affirmative defenses. He also filed a counterclaim
pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA),
15 U.S.C.S. §§ 1692-1692p (LEXIS through Pub. L.
No. 114-284); 32 M.R.S. §§ 11001-11054
FIA Card Services moved to dismiss the counterclaim and
attached an affidavit from its attorney, N. Laine Astbury, to
the motion. Attached to the Astbury affidavit was a computer
printout from the National Information Center, a website that
purportedly maintains data collected by the Federal Reserve
about financial institutions. Astbury averred, based on the
printout, that FIA Card Services, N.A., acquired Bank of
America, N.A., on October 20, 2006. Astbury also averred that
the printout was authentic and admissible pursuant to M.R.
Evid. 902(5), which provides that books, pamphlets, and
official publications "purporting to be issued by a
public authority" are self-authenticating.
The court (Cantara, J.) denied Camires motion to
dismiss the complaint and granted the motion filed by FIA
Card Services to dismiss Camires counterclaim. In granting
the motion to dismiss, the court concluded, based on the
Astbury affidavit and printout, that FIA Card Services was
not a third party collecting the debt, but rather stood in
the place of Bank 1 of America, the card issuer that extended
credit to Camire, and thus FIA Card Services was exempt from
liability pursuant to the Act. 
On April 28, 2015, the court (Driscoll, J.) issued
an order following a pretrial conference setting the matter
for trial and stating that two hours or less would be
required. The Bank was substituted as the plaintiff on
November 25, 2014.3 The court (Cantara, J.) held a
bench trial on November 24, 2015. The trial began at 1:14
p.m. and concluded at 4:55 p.m., running over the two hours
allocated, even excluding breaks and recesses. The court
reminded Camire of time constraints on numerous occasions
during the trial, but allowed proceedings to continue longer
than scheduled and beyond the extensions of time for
testimony granted by the court during the trial.
The court entered a judgment in favor of the Bank in the
amount of $11, 573.40 plus costs. Camire timely appealed.