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Harris v. Nissan-Infiniti LT

United States District Court, D. Nevada

January 11, 2018

BECKY HARRIS, Plaintiff,
NISSAN-INFINITI LT, et al., Defendant.


         Presently before the court is defendant Specialized Loan Servicing LLC's (“SLS”) motion to dismiss. (ECF No. 13). Plaintiff Becky Harris filed a response (ECF No. 17), to which SLS replied (ECF No. 19).

         I. Facts

         This is a Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) violation action resulting from an alleged erroneous report containing derogatory credit information issued to national reporting agencies. (ECF No. 1 at 2).

         On or about June 16, 2011, plaintiff filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy (“bankruptcy”). (ECF No. 1 at 4). The bankruptcy court discharged plaintiff's obligations on September 19, 2012. Id. Subsequent to the discharge, in an Experian Information Solutions, Inc. (“Experian”) report dated May 27, 2015, SLS reported an account “status” for plaintiff that included a “balloon payment” of $32, 262, due in November of 2021. Id. at 6. Plaintiff disputed the reported information by notifying Experian, in writing, in accordance with 15 U.S.C. § 1681i(a)(2). Id. at 7. On or about September 21, 2015, plaintiff received notification from Experian that the account in question was “[u]pdated, ” and that Experian had “completed processing of [her] dispute(s).” Id. Nonetheless, the challenged information was re-reported on plaintiff's report. Id. at 8.

         On January 23, 2017, plaintiff filed the underlying complaint against defendants SLS, Experian, and Nissan-Infiniti LT (“Nissan”), alleging willfully inaccurate and negative reporting of a discharged debt in violation of the FCRA, 15 U.S.C §§ 1681s-2(b)(1)(D) and (E), 1681i(a) and/or 1681e(b). (ECF No. 1). On March 22, 2017, SLS filed a motion to dismiss, pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). (ECF No. 13).

         On April 12, 2017, while SLS's motion was still pending, plaintiff voluntarily dismissed defendant Nissan from this action, pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 41(a)(1)(A)(i). (ECF No. 18). Additionally, on August 22, 2017, plaintiff and defendant Experian stipulated to a dismissal of plaintiff's claims against Experian in accordance with Fed.R.Civ.P. 41(a)(1)(A)(ii). (ECF No. 32).

         II. Legal Standard

         A court may dismiss a complaint for “failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). A properly pled complaint must provide “[a] short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2); Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). While Rule 8 does not require detailed factual allegations, it demands “more than labels and conclusions” or a “formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (citation omitted).

         “Factual allegations must be enough to rise above the speculative level.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. Thus, to survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter to “state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678 (citation omitted).

         In Iqbal, the Supreme Court clarified the two-step approach district courts are to apply when considering motions to dismiss. First, the court must accept as true all well-pled factual allegations in the complaint; however, legal conclusions are not entitled to the assumption of truth. Id. at 678-79. Mere recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported only by conclusory statements, do not suffice. Id. at 678.

         Second, the court must consider whether the factual allegations in the complaint allege a plausible claim for relief. Id. at 679. A claim is facially plausible when the plaintiff's complaint alleges facts that allow the court to draw a reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the alleged misconduct. Id. at 678.

         Where the complaint does not permit the court to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has “alleged-but not shown-that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Id. (internal quotation marks omitted). When the allegations in a complaint have not crossed the line from conceivable to plausible, plaintiff's claim must be dismissed. Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570.

         The Ninth Circuit addressed post-Iqbal pleading standards in Starr v. Baca, 652 F.3d 1202, 1216 (9th Cir. 2011). The Starr court stated, in relevant part:

First, to be entitled to the presumption of truth, allegations in a complaint or counterclaim may not simply recite the elements of a cause of action, but must contain sufficient allegations of underlying facts to give fair notice and to enable the opposing party to defend itself effectively. Second, the factual allegations that are taken as true must plausibly suggest an entitlement to relief, such that it is not ...

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