A Delaware resident alleges in a proposed class action that Koons Lexus of Wilmington pulled her credit report despite her repeated instructions not to, and damaged her credit in the process.
The 12-page lawsuit alleges the car dealership violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act by accessing or making an inquiry into the plaintiff’s credit report without written authorization or a permissible purpose to do so when the woman visited the business in December 2020 to look into potentially buying a car. According to the complaint, the defendant’s conduct negatively affected the scores affiliated with the plaintiff’s credit reports.
“During this process, Plaintiff repeatedly informed the representatives of Koons Lexus that she did not desire or wish to obtain, apply for or pursue any financing through Koons Lexus,” the case, filed in Delaware federal court, claims. “Plaintiff further stated that she did not want or authorize Koons Lexus to pull her credit report and make an inquiry on Plaintiff’s consumer credit.”
According to the lawsuit, Koons Lexus employees “repeatedly attempted” to get information from the plaintiff “under false pretenses” for the purpose of making an inquiry into her credit. The suit alleges this was done without the plaintiff’s knowledge, consent or authorization, and stresses that the plaintiff did not, at any point, provide the defendant, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc., with her Social Security number.
The lawsuit alleges that the defendant, while the plaintiff was present at the business, used a fabricated social security number, “111-11-1111,” to make an unauthorized inquiry and obtain the woman’s credit report.
“At no time did Defendant obtain authorization, let alone written authorization, from Plaintiff for Defendant to access or make an inquiry on Plaintiff’s consumer credit report,” the case asserts. “In fact, Plaintiff specifically instructed Defendant that she did not want Koons Lexus to pull her credit report or make any inquiries on her credit.”
Further, the defendant, after allegedly pulling the plaintiff’s credit report without permission, then refused to let the woman see the report, the lawsuit alleges. When she attempted to view the information, Koons Lexus attempted to only show the woman her credit score, reasoning baselessly that she could not leave with the data because she was not employed by the dealership’s finance department, before finally relinquishing the report, the case says.
“Plaintiff stated to Defendant’s employees that if they did not allow her to leave with her consumer credit report, that she would call the police,” the suit claims.
The case says the plaintiff later received a confirmation email from Koons Lexus thanking her for applying for a loan, even though she had never actually done so.
Under the FCRA, it is unlawful to obtain or use a consumer report without first obtaining written consent or for a permissible purpose, the suit reads, calling the defendant’s alleged violations of the law “negligent and willful.”
Per the case, the defendant has “engaged in identical improper and illegal conduct” with respect to members of the proposed class, which includes anyone whose consumer credit reports were accessed by the defendant without written permission, authorization or a permissible purpose within the past two years.
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