The Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has upheld a lower court’s summary judgment in favor of a defendant accused of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act by failing to provide the plaintiff with a copy of his credit report and the opportunity to challenge any inaccuracies before taking an adverse action.
The Ninth Circuit affirmed the District Court’s ruling that the plaintiff did not suffer an injury-in-fact, and thus, did not meet the requirements to file a lawsuit in federal court.
A copy of the ruling in Dutta v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company can be accessed by clicking here.
The plaintiff had applied for a job with State Farm through its Agency Career Track program. But the plaintiff’s application was rejected because it did not meet the necessary requirements, namely the report included a charged-off debt and two loan delinquencies. The plaintiff argued that he did not have the necessary time to argue that the items on the credit report were inaccurate before his application was rejected.
The plaintiff “did the one thing that a party claiming to be aggrieved by an improper reply submission may not do—he did nothing,” the court wrote in its ruling. “If a party does not object to or challenge the improper submission of new evidence before the district court, the party who fails to object has ‘waived any challenge on the admissibility of [the] evidence.’ ”
In ruling that the plaintiff did not suffer a concrete injury, the Appeals Court wrote:
Consequently, although [the plaintiff] made a plausible showing of State Farm’s procedural violation of FCRA, he failed to establish facts showing he suffered actual harm or a material risk of harm. Thus, [the plaintiff] failed to establish a concrete injury for purposes of the injury-in-fact element of standing.