FCRA text, history demonstrate applications to factual accuracy

August 10, 2022

CUNA and organizations filed an amicus brief this week in a Fair Credit Reporting Act lawsuit in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. The lawsuit—Milgram v. JPMorgan Chase—involves whether the FCRA covers factual inaccuracies, not disputed legal arguments.

“The text, structure, history, and purpose of the FCRA all demonstrate that the statute requires furnishers and CRAs to investigate and verify factual accuracy, not assess or resolve legal disputes,” the brief reads.

“Asking whether credit information conforms exactly to fact or truth, or has no errors, or contains all necessary parts, applies most naturally to matters of fact,” it adds.

CUNA’s argument is contrary to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which argued in an amicus the FCRA requires credit reporting agencies to investigate legal disputes in addition to factual inaccuracies.

“Even if ‘inaccuracy’ can sometimes be construed to cover both factual and legal error, in the context of the FCRA it should be limited to its ordinary meaning of ‘conforming to fact,’” the brief reads. “The surrounding statutory language repeatedly speaks in terms that apply most naturally to factual disputes.”

CUNA filed a similar brief last week in the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals.