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Background Checks / Fair Credit Reporting Act

Consumer reports concerning our credit, criminal history and other background information are playing an increasingly important role in society.  Our ability to obtain credit to purchase goods and services often depends on our credit score.  Obtaining employment can also hinge on the results of a background check which may include a criminal history and even interviews with friends, colleagues and/or former employers.  Simply put, in the information age how we look on paper can be as important as who we are in person. 

Congress enacted the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) in 1970 in recognition of the increasing significance of consumer reports, to regulate how Consumer Reporting Agencies and others may report and use our information.  Its purpose is to promote accuracy, fairness, and privacy of consumer information while at the same time satisfying the commercial need for consumer reports. 

If you have lost a job opportunity, been denied credit or suffered some other adverse consequence because of information on a consumer report, you may have a claim under the FCRA which provides consumers with a private right of action for the violation of its requirements.  Under the FCRA, claims may be brought for the following unlawful conduct:

  • Failing to follow procedures for ensuring the accuracy of information
  • Failing to investigate or reinvestigate consumer dispute information
  • Obtaining a consumer report for an impermissible purpose
  • Obtaining a consumer report for employment purposes without proper disclosure and authorization
  • Taking an adverse action against an employee based on information in a consumer report without following pre- and post- adverse action notice requirements

A company that violates the FCRA may be liable for any actual damages or, in the case of a willful violation, statutory damages of $100 to $1,000.

At Glancy Prongay & Murray we have significant experience litigating FCRA class actions against some of the largest companies in the country including Michaels Stores, O’Reilly Automotive Stores and Petco, among others.  If you have experienced problems relating to a background check call us now for a free and confidential consultation with a consumer protection attorney to learn about your rights under the FCRA.

Court Recognition

“And without question, the Court is of the opinion that the value of benefit that’s been conferred to the class is extremely sizable and that this Court is certainly aware that the skill and efficiency of plaintiff’s counsel is what attributed to this settlement, and they are learned securities counsel. The Court is mindful of that, and as a result they were able to sort of weed their way through the complex issues in this case, and also to bring this about — bring about a settlement rather in short order as these matters go. So the Court certainly attributes that to counsel’s skill and efficiency, as well as the ability to work with the adversaries in this matter.”

–Hon. Susan D. Wigention, U.S. District Judge, District of New Jersey

“Class Counsel has conducted the litigation and achieved the Settlement in good faith and with skill, perseverance and diligent advocacy”

— Hon. Donovan W. Frank, U.S. District Judge, District of Minnesota

“The court finds that the Settlement Fund… created by Class Counsel is an exceptional result… The settlement is significantly above the average securities class action settlement when measured as a percentage of losses recovered… The court finds that Class Counsel, particularly Co-Lead Counsel, exerted tremendous effort on behalf of the class in the prosecution of this action… The Court finds that Class Counsel skillfully prosecuted this action, particularly given that this case was unusually complex relative to most securities fraud class actions. ”

–Hon. Dickran M. Tevrizian (Ret.), U.S. District Court Judge, Central District of California

More Testimonials