Second Circuit Rejects “Legal” v. “Fact” Standard for FCRA Inaccuracies

Section 1681e(b) of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires credit reporting agencies to “follow reasonable procedures to assure maximum possible accuracy of the information” reported. In 2021, a district court held that a plaintiff cannot bring a claim for violating that provision when “the accuracy at issue requires a legal determination as to the validity of the debt the agency reported.” Rather, it held, a reporting agency could be held liable only “when the information reported does not match the information furnished,” narrowing the statute to cases involving transcription errors.

Today, in Sessa v. TransUnion, a unanimous panel of the Second Circuit reversed. The court held there was no bright-line factual versus legal standard; rather, the only question is whether the information in dispute is “objectively and readily verifiable.”

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