Mader v. Experian
- Summarized by Joel Levitin , Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP
- 4 months 4 weeks ago
- Case Type:
- Case Status:
- 20-3073; 21-2171 (2nd Circuit, Jan 04,2023) Published
- Alleged credit reporting "inaccuracy" asserted to be violation of FCRA -- that student loan at issue was reported on credit report notwithstanding plaintiff's bankruptcy -- did not constitute such violation because there was "genuine factual dispute" over whether such loan was dischargeable under Bankr. Code sec. 523(a)(8)(A)(i) (i.e., "made under any program funded in whole or in part by a governmental unit or nonprofit institution"). Because post-bankruptcy validity of debt was "not sufficiently objectively verifiable" by Experian, reporting on the loan was not "inaccurate" under FCRA.
- Procedural context:
- The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Experian on the basis that the reported loan was a non-dischargeable student loan under Bankruptcy Code section 523(a)(8)(A)(i) given that such loan was "made under any program funded in whole or in part by a governmental unit or nonprofit institution", and therefore it was appropriately reported on by Experian. The Court of Appeals concluded that there was a genuine factual dispute over whether such loan was "made under any program funded in whole or in part by a governmental unit or nonprofit institution", but affirmed the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Experian for different reasons.
- The plaintiff had taken out a student loan in 2008. In 2012, he filed a bankruptcy petition listing the loan. In 2013, the bankruptcy court issued a final decree of discharge, stating that the plaintiff was "released from all dischargeable debts." The plaintiff later entered into a loan modification agreement and made loan payments between 2013 and 2017. In 2019, the plaintiff's credit report indicated that the loan was still outstanding, and a portion was past due. Without disputing the debt with Experian or taking it up with the lender in bankruptcy court or otherwise, the plaintiff sued Experian in district court, alleging that reporting the debt was a violation of the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act and the New York Fair Credit Reporting Act because such debt had been discharged in the bankruptcy case.
- Lohier, Carney, and Nathan, Circuit Judges (Opinion by Nathan, Circuit Judge)
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