Discharged Debtor’s Claims of Invasion of Privacy/Violation of FCRA Survived Banks’ Motion to Dismiss Where he Alleged Banks had No Legitimate Reason to Pull his Credit Reports

Discharged Debtor’s Claims of Invasion of Privacy/Violation of FCRA Survived Banks’ Motion to Dismiss Where he Alleged Banks had No Legitimate Reason to Pull his Credit Reports

The First Amended Complaint  brings claims against Defendants PNC Bank, NA and Citizens Financial Group Inc for negligent and willful violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), 15 U.S.C. § 1681b(f). According to the Complaint, Defendants are both “users” of consumer credit and other financial information as defined under FCRA, and are furnishers of consumer credit information to the three national consumer reporting agencies. For purposes of this motion, the parties do not dispute that Plaintiff had one or more accounts with PNC Bank and with Citizens or its predecessor, prior to his filing of bankruptcy in February of 2014. Plaintiff alleges that his accounts with both Defendants were discharged by the Bankruptcy Court in May of 2014, and that both Defendants had knowledge of the discharge. The Complaint also alleges that following the discharge, in April of 2015, PNC requested and obtained Plaintiff’s consumer report from Experian Information Solutions, Inc. (“Experian”), for “account review” purposes, and that this request was not authorized under the FCRA. The Complaint also alleges that Citizens requested and obtained Plaintiff’s consumer report in August of 2015, for “account review” purposes, in violation of the FCRA. At the time of the requests, Plaintiff  claims that he had no personal obligation on any account with PNC or Citizens, and that he had not requested or otherwise initiated any credit transaction or debt obligation with either Defendant since his bankruptcy discharge. Further, the Complaint alleges that the Defendants have been notified of disputes by “dozens, if not hundreds” of other consumers who have been subject to similar illegal access to their financial and credit information following bankruptcy discharge. Plaintiff claims that these unauthorized requests for his private financial information are a violation of his privacy and that the intrusions have caused him emotional stress by creating a fear of future invasions of privacy and of the possibility that the Defendants are planning to engage in illegal collection efforts against him.

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