Volume 10, Edition 2, February 2014

This Month’s Challenge is sponsored by:


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ABC consumer reporting agency provided XYZ a consumer r
eport regarding tenant applicant John Doe. XYZ declined tenancy to Mr. Doe. There were reports of past criminal acts of a sexual nature in the consumer report. Mr. Doe contacts ABC to obtain a copy of his consumer report within a month after furnishing the report to XYZ. No information is provided to Mr. Doe because no information is currently
contained in his file maintained by ABC. Subsequent requests were made and eventually some information is provided to Mr. Doe, but it does not include information regarding the past criminal acts . Is ABC’s response to Mr. Doe adequate?

a. Yes, because Section 1681g(a) only requires ABC to “clearly and accurately disclose to the consumer all information in the consumer’s file at the time of the request.”

b. It depends on whether or not ABC treats all consumer files similarly and it would not have the information for any consumer who requested the in formation within that same period of time.

c. No, ABC is required to maintain the information on Mr. Doe for a reasonable period of time in order to allow him an opportunity to contest the report.

d. Mr. Doe will likely be able to bring a lawsuit against ABC based on its response because it is hard to believe that no information is available wi
thin one month, but then some becomes available later. Plus the absence of the information reported about the criminal charges is the
real issue for Mr. Doe and the failure to provide this information will likely be considered a potential violation of Section 1681g(a).


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