Expert Testimony Not Always Required in FCRA “Reas Proc"
Posted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 11:29 pm
Expert Testimony Not Always Required in FCRA “Reasonable Procedures” Case. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit recently held that the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) does not always require the use of expert testimony to determine whether a consumer reporting agency’s procedures to assure maximum possible accuracy of reported information were reasonable. Wilson v. CARCO Group, Inc., No. 03cv02313, 2008 WL 540184 (D.C. Cir. Feb. 29, 2008). The plaintiff in the case was subjected to a criminal background check in connection with a job application. CARCO, the background check provider, subcontracted with another entity to conduct the check, which ultimately yielded 13 different “hits,” corresponding to 13 different individuals. Subsequently, the employer withdrew its employment offer, notifying Wilson that he had criminal charges in Oklahoma (which Wilson denied). CARCO eventually concluded that Wilson had no criminal history in Oklahoma, which was confirmed by Wilson’s own investigation. Wilson sued CARCO for negligent violation of FCRA. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of CARCO, holding that a plaintiff alleging the lack of “reasonable procedures” must always present expert testimony. The circuit court reversed based on its holding in Stewart v. Credit Bureau, Inc., 734 F.2d 47 (D.C. Cir. 1984). The court concluded that, “as a practical matter, expert testimony might sometimes be necessary to satisfy Stewart. But it is certainly not required in all [reasonable procedures] cases.” For a copy of the opinion, please see http://pacer.cadc.uscourts.gov/docs/com ... -7053a.pdf.