United States District Court, D. Nevada
SHARON BARNUM; ROBERT SUSTRIK, and all similarly situated individuals, Plaintiffs,
EQUIFAX INFORMATION SERVICES, LLC, Defendant.
RICHARD F. BOULWARE, II UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Sharon Barnum and Robert Sustrik sue Defendant Equifax
Information Services, LLC for alleged violations of the Fair
Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), 15 U.S.C. §
1681 et seq. Before the Court are three contested
motions: Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment, ECF No.
148; (2) Plaintiffs' Motion to Certify Class, ECF No.
150; and (3) Plaintiffs' Motion for Partial Summary
Judgment, ECF No. 154.
preliminary note, this matter was originally titled
Cabebe v. Equifax Information Services, LLC. The
original plaintiff has been terminated from this matter and
replaced with the currently named Plaintiffs. Thus, the Court
instructs that the caption in this matter shall now read as
Cabebe sued Defendant on December 11, 2016. ECF No. 1. Three
amended complaints were filed, the third of which terminated
Cabebe from the matter. ECF Nos. 5, 29, 39. Plaintiffs filed
the operative complaint, the Fourth Amended Complaint, on
March 29, 2018. ECF No. 112. In the Fourth Amended Complaint,
Plaintiffs assert two claims against Defendant: (1) a
violation of the FRCA and (2) a request for declaratory
relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2201 that Defendant violated
FRCA. Id. Plaintiffs bring the claims on behalf of a
proposed class of consumers. Id.
Defendant moves for summary judgment, and Plaintiffs move for
partial summary judgment. ECF Nos. 148, 149, 154, 155, 161.
Both parties opposed the competing motion and filed
corresponding replies. ECF Nos. 174, 175, 173, 185, 187.
Defendant also filed a sur-reply after obtaining leave to so
from the Court. ECF Nos. 213, 214.
addition to their Motion for Partial Summary Judgment,
Plaintiffs move to certify a proposed class under Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure (“Rule”) 23. ECF No. 150.
Defendant opposed, and Plaintiffs replied. ECF Nos. 176, 178,
180, 181, 188, 189.
Court finds the following facts to be undisputed. As defined
by the FCRA, Defendant is a credit reporting agency
(“CRA”) and Plaintiffs are consumers.
Defendant's Reinvestigation Procedure
consumer disputes information reflected on a credit report,
Defendant opens an Automated Consumer Interview System
(“ACIS”) case to conduct a reinvestigation into
the information provided by a furnisher. The ACIS case
details the process of the reinvestigation.
completion of the reinvestigation, Defendant generates an
electronic file containing a reinvestigation results letter
and transmits the file to nonparty Fidelity National Card
Services Inc. Defendant contracts with Fidelity National to
complete the mailing of reinvestigation results letters to
consumers. Under the contract, Fidelity National prints and
mails the reinvestigation results letter to the
consumer. The contract governing Fidelity
National's services has been amended multiple times.
Defendant, however, has been unable to provide all the
amendments and exhibits to the amendments.
while Defendant's procedure for responding to mailed-in
consumer disputes is memorialized in its manuals, the manuals
do not outline the processes or the policies in place that
allow Defendant to oversee Fidelity National to ensure that
the FCRA obligations are satisfied. But Defendant typically
sends reinvestigation results letters to consumers
automatically except in certain circumstances, e.g.,
when a consumer's address cannot be verified or when a