Phillip Bates (plaintiff) received a debt-collection notice from C & S Adjusters, Inc. (C & S) (defendant). Bates had incurred the debt while he lived in the Western District of Pennsylvania. The creditor, whose principal place of business was also in the Western District of Pennsylvania, referred the matter to C & S, which was a Pennsylvania corporation. C & S mailed the collection letter to Bates's Pennsylvania address, but Bates had subsequently moved to the Western District of New York. C & S did not mark the collection letter with instructions that it should not be forwarded, so the U.S. Postal Service forwarded the notice to Bates’s New York residence. After Bates received the letter at his New York address, he filed suit in the United States District Court for the Western District of New York, alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (Act). C & S filed a motion to dismiss the case because of improper venue. The United States District Court for the Western District of New York granted the motion to dismiss based on improper venue. Bates appealed.