Pennsylvania Complaint Against Trans Union, Experian, Equifax and Kroll Factual Data, Inc., for Mixing Consumer Credit File, Reporting Derogatory Information

September 20th, 2012 by krista

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA

                                                              

 JANE DOE,  

          Plaintiff,

 

          v.

 

 

TRANS UNION, LLC,                                           

    and                                                                          

EXPERIAN INFORMATION                             

SOLUTIONS, INC.,                                                

    and                                                                           

EQUIFAX INFORMATION SERVICES LLC,

    and                                                                           

KROLL FACTUAL DATA, INC.

           

          Defendants.                                    

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  Civil Action No. 

 

 

 

 

 

COMPLAINT

 

Preliminary Statement

 

1. This is an action for damages brought by an individual consumer against the Defendants for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681 et seq., as amended.

Jurisdiction and Venue

2. Jurisdiction of this Court arises under 15 U.S.C. § 1681p and 28 U.S.C. § 1331.

3. Venue lies properly in this district pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b).

Parties

4. Plaintiff is an adult individual who resides in Michigan.

5. Defendant Trans Union, LLC (“Trans Union”) is a credit reporting agency that regularly conducts business in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and which has a principal place of business located at 1510 Chester Pike, Crum Lynne, PA 19022.

6. Defendant Experian Information Solutions, Inc. (“Experian”) is a credit reporting agency that regularly conducts business in Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and which has a principal place of business located at 5 Century Drive, Parsippany, NJ.

7. Defendant Equifax Information Services LLC (“Equifax”) is a credit reporting agency that regularly conducts business in Eastern District of Pennsylvania and which has a principal place of business located at 6 Clementon Road, East, Suite A2, Gibbsboro, New Jersey 08026.

8. Defendant Kroll Factual Data, Inc. (“Kroll”) is a business entity that regularly conducts business in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and which has a place of business located at 5200 Hahns Peak Drive, Loveland, CO 80538.

Factual Allegations

9. Defendants have been reporting derogatory and inaccurate statements and information relating to Plaintiff and Plaintiff’s credit history to third parties (“inaccurate information”) from at least April 2012 through present. The inaccurate information includes numerous tradelines, including, but not limited to, an account with Sallie Mae, Citi Financial, Discover Card, Capital One and GECRB/ Gap Card.

10. The inaccurate information negatively reflects upon the Plaintiff, Plaintiff’s credit repayment history, Plaintiff’s financial responsibility as a debtor and Plaintiff’s creditworthiness.  The inaccurate information consists of accounts and/or tradelines that do not belong to the Plaintiff, and that actually belong to another consumer.  Due to Defendants’ faulty procedures, Defendants mixed the credit file of Plaintiff and that of another consumer with respect to the inaccurate information and other personal identifying information.

11. Kroll, in its capacity as a consumer reporting agency and a reseller of consumer information obtains consumer credit information secondarily from the three major credit reporting agencies.  The consumer credit information maintained for individual consumers by the three major credit reporting agencies consists of public records information, account information and other consumer information.  Once Kroll receives the requested consumer credit information, it assembles and merges the information into a Kroll consumer credit report, which it then sells to third parties.

12. In April 2012, Kroll requested and obtained consumer credit information about the Plaintiff from Trans Union, LLC, Experian Information Solutions, Inc. and Equifax Information Services LLC.

13. Prior to sale of its consumer report about Plaintiff, Kroll did nothing to reconcile the inconsistent reporting of the personal information and accounts and/or tradelines that do not belong to the Plaintiff by the three major credit reporting agencies.

14. Additionally, Kroll did nothing to investigate the conflicting information received from the three major credit bureaus about the personal information or accounts.

15. Notwithstanding the inconsistent reporting of the inaccurate personal information or accounts by the major credit reporting agencies, Kroll sold a consumer credit report about the Plaintiff that included the inaccurate information.

16. The inaccurate information negatively reflects upon the Plaintiff, Plaintiff’s credit repayment history, Plaintiff’s financial responsibility and Plaintiff’s creditworthiness.

17. Trans Union, Experian and Equifax have also been reporting the inaccurate information through the issuance of false and inaccurate credit information and consumer credit reports that it has disseminated to various persons and credit grantors, both known and unknown.  Trans Union, Experian and Equifax have repeatedly published and disseminated consumer reports to such third parties from at least April 2012 through the present.

18. Plaintiff’s credit reports and file have been obtained from Defendants and have been reviewed many times by prospective and existing credit grantors and extenders of credit, and the inaccurate information has been a substantial factor in precluding Plaintiff from receiving many different credit offers and opportunities, known and unknown.  Plaintiff’s credit reports have been obtained from Defendant by such third parties from at April 2012 through the present.

19. Plaintiff further has made numerous requests for a copy of her credit disclosure which Defendants have repeatedly failed to provide to Plaintiff including but not limited to requests made in June 2012.

20. Plaintiff has disputed the inaccurate information with Experian by both oral and written communications to its representatives and by following Experian’s established procedures for disputing consumer credit information.

21. Plaintiff has disputed the inaccurate information with Experian from May 2012 through the present.

22. Notwithstanding Plaintiff’s efforts, Experian has verified the information as accurate and continue to publish and disseminate such inaccurate information to other third parties, persons, entities and credit grantors.  Experian has repeatedly published and disseminated consumer reports to such third parties from at least May 2012 through the present.

23. Despite Plaintiff’s efforts, Experian has never:  (1) contacted Plaintiff to follow up on, verify and/or elicit more specific information about Plaintiff’s disputes; (2) contacted any third parties that would have relevant information concerning Plaintiff’s disputes; (3) forwarded any relevant information concerning Plaintiff’s disputes to the entities originally furnishing the inaccurate information; and (4) requested or obtained any other relevant documents from the entities furnishing the inaccurate information.

24. As a result of Defendants’ conduct, Plaintiff has suffered actual damages in the form of credit denial or loss of credit opportunity, credit defamation and emotional distress, including anxiety, frustration, embarrassment and, humiliation.

25. At all times pertinent hereto, Defendants were acting by and through their agents, servants and/or employees who were acting within the course and scope of their agency or employment, and under the direct supervision and control of the Defendants herein.

26. At all times pertinent hereto, the conduct of the Defendants, as well as that of their agents, servants and/or employees, was malicious, intentional, willful, reckless, and in grossly negligent disregard for federal and state laws and the rights of the Plaintiff herein.

Count One – Violations of the FCRA

(Plaintiff v. Trans Union)

 

27. Plaintiff incorporates the foregoing paragraphs as though the same were set forth at length herein.

28. At all times pertinent hereto, Trans Union was a “person” and “consumer reporting agency” as those terms are defined by 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681a(b) and (f).

29. At all times pertinent hereto, the Plaintiff was a “consumer” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1681a(c).

30. At all times pertinent hereto, the above-mentioned credit reports were “consumer reports” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681a(d).

31. Pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681n and 15 U.S.C. § 1681o, Trans Union is liable to the Plaintiff for willfully and negligently failing to comply with the requirements imposed on a consumer reporting agency of information pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681e(b) and 15 U.S.C. §1681g.

32. The conduct of Trans Union was a direct and proximate cause, as well as a substantial factor, in bringing about the serious injuries, actual damages and harm to the Plaintiff that are outlined more fully above and, as a result, Trans Union is liable to the Plaintiff for the full amount of statutory, actual and punitive damages, along with the attorney’s fees and the costs of litigation, as well as such further relief, as may be permitted by law.

Count Two – Violations of the FCRA

(Plaintiff v. Experian)

 

33. Plaintiff incorporates the foregoing paragraphs as though the same were set forth at length herein.

34. At all times pertinent hereto, Experian was a “person” and “consumer reporting agency” as those terms are defined by 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681a(b) and (f).

35. At all times pertinent hereto, the Plaintiff was a “consumer” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1681a(c).

36. At all times pertinent hereto, the above-mentioned credit reports were “consumer reports” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681a(d).

37. Pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681n and 15 U.S.C. § 1681o, Experian is liable to the Plaintiff for willfully and negligently failing to comply with the requirements imposed on a consumer reporting agency of information pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681e(b), 15 U.S.C. § 1681i and 15 U.S.C. §1681g.

38. The conduct of Experian was a direct and proximate cause, as well as a substantial factor, in bringing about the serious injuries, actual damages and harm to the Plaintiff that are outlined more fully above and, as a result, Experian is liable to the Plaintiff for the full amount of statutory, actual and punitive damages, along with the attorney’s fees and the costs of litigation, as well as such further relief, as may be permitted by law.

Count Three – Violations of the FCRA

(Plaintiff v. Equifax)

 

39. Plaintiff incorporates the foregoing paragraphs as though the same were set forth at length herein.

40. At all times pertinent hereto, Equifax was a “person” and “consumer reporting agency” as those terms are defined by 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681a(b) and (f).

41. At all times pertinent hereto, the Plaintiff was a “consumer” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1681a(c).

42. At all times pertinent hereto, the above-mentioned credit reports were “consumer reports” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681a(d).

43. Pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681n and 15 U.S.C. § 1681o, Equifax is liable to the Plaintiff for willfully and negligently failing to comply with the requirements imposed on a consumer reporting agency of information pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681e(b).

44. The conduct of Equifax was a direct and proximate cause, as well as a substantial factor, in bringing about the serious injuries, actual damages and harm to the Plaintiff that are outlined more fully above and, as a result, Equifax is liable to the Plaintiff for the full amount of statutory, actual and punitive damages, along with the attorney’s fees and the costs of litigation, as well as such further relief, as may be permitted by law.

Count Four – Violations of the FCRA

(Plaintiff v. Kroll) 

45. Plaintiff incorporates the foregoing paragraphs as though the same were set forth at length herein.

46. At all times pertinent hereto, Kroll was a “person,” a “consumer reporting agency,” and a “reseller” as those terms are defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1681a(b), § 1681a(f) and § 1681a(u), respectively.

47. At all times pertinent hereto, the Plaintiff was a “consumer” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1681a(c).

48. At all times pertinent hereto, the above-mentioned credit reports were “consumer reports” as that term is defined by 15 U.S.C. § 1681a(d).

49. Pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681n and 15 U.S.C. § 1681o, Kroll is liable to the Plaintiff for negligently and willfully failing to comply with the requirements imposed on a consumer reporting agency of information pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681e(b).

50. The conduct of Kroll was a direct and proximate cause, as well as a substantial factor, in bringing about the serious injuries, actual damages and harm to the Plaintiff that are outlined more fully above and, as a result, Kroll is liable to the Plaintiff for the full amount of statutory, actual and punitive damages, along with the attorney’s fees and the costs of litigation, as well as such further relief, as may be permitted by law.

Jury Trial Demanded

51. Plaintiff demands trial by jury.

 

Prayer for Relief

            WHEREFORE, Plaintiff seeks judgment in Plaintiff’s favor and damages against the Defendants, based on the following requested relief:

(a) Actual damages;

(b) Statutory damages;

(c)Punitive damages;

(d) Costs and reasonable attorney’s fees pursuant to 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681n and 1681o; and

(e) Such other and further relief as may be necessary, just and proper.

Respectfully submitted,

 

FRANCIS & MAILMAN, P.C.

BY:     /s/ Mark Mailman                  

MARK D. MAILMAN

ERIN A. NOVAK

Land Title Building, 19th Floor

100 South Broad Street

Philadelphia, PA 19110

(215) 735-8600

Attorneys for Plaintiff


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