Given the recent kerfuffle about Experian not doing its due diligence about a Court Ventures client (covered on DataBreaches.net), I thought this report on a class action settlement was interesting:
On Tuesday, a California federal judge preliminarily approved an $8 million class action settlement that would resolve claims that Experian Information Solutions Inc. illegally disclosed consumers’ credit reports to a debt collection agency.
The class action lawsuit was initially filed by plaintiff Roane Holman in 2011. It was later amended to include plaintiffs Narciso Navarro and Miguel A. Alvarez. The plaintiffs alleged that Experian provided their consumer reports to collection agency Finex Group LLC, which was attempting to collect on debts it incurred for towed vehicles. The agency entered into a subscriber agreement with Experian that lasted from January 2008 until November 2010.
The class action lawsuit alleged that Experian violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) when it failed to confirm that Finex was using the credit reports for a permissible purpose, despite the fact that Experian had reason to believe Finex was not doing so. If a jury were to find that Experian willfully violated the FCRA, it could award each Class Member statutory damages of $100 to $1,000.
According to court documents, Finex received more than 40,000 consumer credit reports from Experian that contained a “recovery score,” which ranks accounts based on the likelihood that the debtors will pay the debt they owe.
Read more on Top Class Actions. The case is Holman v. Experian Information Solutions Inc., et al., Case No. 4:11-cv-00180, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.