Background Check Vendors Beware: the CFPB’s Authority to Enforce the FCRA Applies to You

January | New York: In November, the CFPB filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against Sterling Infosystems, Inc., for violations of the FCRA.

11th Circuit Reduces Punitive Damages for Consumer Reporting Agency’s FCRA Violations

February | Florida: The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed a $250,000 compensatory damages award and reduced a $3.3 million award to $1 million.

9th Circuit Holds All Members of a Certified Class Must Have Article III Standing to Recover Monetary Damages

March | California: The 9th Circuit held in Ramirez v. TransUnion LLC that individual class members must satisfy Article III’s standing requirements in order to recover individual monetary damages.

9th Circuit Reinforces Prohibition Against “Extraneous” Information Background Check Disclosures

March | National: The Ninth Circuit issued its third opinion on the question of when an employer’s background check disclosure satisfies the “standalone” disclosure requirement in the FCRA.

Federal Circuit Courts’ Differing Interpretations of Scope and Application of Article III Standing After Spokeo Leaves Defendants with Uncertainty

March | National: With the courts taking different approaches when looking at whether a statute itself creates a protected interest that relieves the need to show any additional harm or injury, defendants find it difficult to predict whether a lawsuit may survive.

9th Cir.: Employees Failed to Show Background Check Info Was Confusing

April | California: It was determined that two Shamrock Foods employees failed to show they were confused by background check information and would not have signed off had it contained a sufficiently clear disclosure.

Background Check Disclosures: What’s Extra But Not Extraneous?

April | Alaska: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in March that both affirmed and reversed parts of a lower district court’s findings to dismiss a class action claim.

Ninth Circuit Again Addresses FCRA’s ‘Standalone’ Disclosure Requirement

May | California: The Ninth Circuit affirmed the trial court’s grant of summary judgement in favor of the defendant-employer in Luna v. Hansen and Adkins Auto Transport, Inc.

Ninth Circuit Issues a Positive Decision for Employers in the World of Background Checks

May | California: A Ninth Circuit decision in Luna v. Hansen & Adkins Auto Transport, Inc., limited a claimant’s attempt to stretch the FCRA beyond its plain language.

Ninth Circuit Issues Two (Mostly) Pro-Employer Background Check Decisions

May | Alaska & California: In two separate cases, the Ninth Circuit issued mostly pro-employer federal FCRA background check decisions.

Employer Did Not Violate FCRA By Providing Disclosure Along With Other Materials

June | California: The Ninth Circuit held that the FCRA disclosure need not be provided at a point in time that is “distinct” from the time when other employment-related are provided to an applicant.

Ninth Circuit Rejects “Novel” FCRA Standalone Theory

June | California: The Ninth Circuit rejected a former employee’s argument that his employer violated the FCRA when it provided the consumer report disclosure with other application materials.

LexisNexis Sued for FCRA Violation for Failing to Keep Consumer Data Up-To-Date

June | Georgia: LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Inc., has been sued in a proposed class action for violations of the FCRA.

Broader Implications of Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s Ruling in Gass: Federal Illegality of Marijuana Likely Not Dispositive

July | Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania Supreme Court unanimously ruled that a county’s probation agency could not prohibit individuals under its supervision from using medical marijuana consistent with the state’s Medical Marijuana Act.

Francis Mailman Soumilas Wins Settlement Approval in Nationwide Class Action Suit Against Starbucks

July | Georgia: Starbucks was accused in separate class action complaints of allegedly systemically violating the FCRA by failing to give job applicants timely notice about the use of consumer credit reports.

What’s Happening in FCRA Class Actions

July | National: With more than 4,937 FCRA cases filed in 2019, there is a growing body of case law that offers  significant guidance for best practices.

$1.3M Settlement Reached in Criminal Background Check Suit

August | New York: The parties in a case of FCRA violations against Madison Square Garden have agreed to settle the lawsuit for $1.3 million.

Pennsylvania Federal Court Finds Lack of Article III Standing in Purely Procedural FCRA Violation and Dismisses Putative Class

September | Pennsylvania: The Eastern District of Pennsylvania confirmed that a plaintiff lacks Article III standing to state a claim for violation of the FCRA premised solely on the failure to receive a copy of the background report and the procedurally-required summary of rights.

TransUnion Sued in Federal Class Action for Continuing to Misreport Innocent Consumers as Terrorists on Credit Reports Despite Previous Punitive Damages Verdicts Against It for Similar Misreporting

September | Pennsylvania: TransUnion was sued in a class action lawsuit for labeling the plaintiff as a terrorist on his credit report based on his last name.

Macy’s Settles Lawsuit Over Criminal Background Checks, NAACP Legal Defense Fund Says It’s a ‘Valuable Example’ for Other Employers to Follow

September | New York: Macy’s Inc. has agreed to settle a lawsuit that accused the store of using an unnecessarily punitive criminal history screening policy that discriminated against minorities.

Background Checks: The Advent of the New California Employment Class Action

November | California: Class action litigation regarding the FCRA has been on the rise in California since a 2017 Ninth Circuit ruling that applied a hypertechnical approach to disclosure requirements.

Checkpeople Ordered to Pay Fines and Fees for Automatic Renewal Violations

November | California: Checkpeople.com has been ordered to pay $775,000 in penalties, fees and restitution for a civil law enforcement case that found they renewed subscriptions without consent.

Supreme Court to Take a Stand on Standing, Granting Cert. of 9th Circuit’s Ramirez Decision

December | California: The Supreme Court granted cert in a case to consider “whether either Article III or Rule 23 permits a damages class action where the vast majority of the class suffered no actual injury …”