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Starbucks Hit with Class Action Over Consumer Reports

A proposed class action filed against Starbucks claims the company unlawfully used consumer reports to take adverse action against job applicants without first providing the individuals with sufficient and timely notice, a copy of the report, and a summary of their rights under the FCRA.

Filed in Washington, the nine-page lawsuit details allegations that the coffee powerhouse “systematically” violates the FCRA by failing to provide job applicants “any meaningful opportunity” to correct errors in their consumer reports before the company makes a hiring decision. The plaintiff claims he was denied employment as a barista after a background screen turned up “multiple felony and misdemeanor charges and convictions” that he had nothing to do with. In fact, the lawsuit alleges, the crimes and convictions listed on the background report in question actually belong to the plaintiff’s adoptive brother.

By the time the plaintiff says he received a letter from Starbucks notifying him of the results of his background report, the company had allegedly already denied him employment. From the suit:

“The negative adjudication of [the plaintiff’s] application occurred prior to [the plaintiff] being notified in writing of that fact and prior to [the plaintiff] being provided with a copy of the report or any meaningful opportunity to dispute it,” the lawsuit argues. “In doing so, [Starbucks] failed to comply with the FCRA’s pre-adverse action notification requirements.”

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