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XPN: DISPUTING ALL ACCOUNTS; NEEDED IN MIXED FILE DISPUTE?

Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2005 6:43 pm
by David A. Szwak
IN A MIXED FILE, THE CRA SEES THE VARIATIONS IN ID DATA AS TO EACH ACCOUNT. RATHER THAN TAKE THE TIME TO SEGREGATE THE ACCOUNTS AND OTHER DATA ACCORDING TO THE METRO TAPE PERSONAL ID DATA ATTACHED TO EACH ITEM, THE CRAs BLAST OUT PERFUNCTORY ACDVs/CDVs TO THE SUBSCRIBERS. THEY REFUSE TO TAKE THE TIME TO UNWIND THEIR OWN MIXED FILE DEBACLES. FOR MORE ON THIS, READ JENSEN V. EXPERIAN [RUN SEARCH HERE] AND READ O'CONNOIR V. TRANS UNION POSTS HERE. DO NOT BUY INTO THE CRAZY DISTRICT COURT RULING IN CRABILL V. TRANS UNION. READ THE 7TH CIR. OPINIO IN CRABILL.

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9 Q. What is Mr. Jensen's complaint with regard to his
10 credit report?
11 A. Okay. He is listing his correct address. And
12 he's also indicating, through a noted handwritten form that
13 "I request that you investigate all accounts in the
14 attached credit report and report the results of your
15 investigation to all of my creditors and to me." And then
16 he has specific accounts with specific disputes.

17 Q. So he filled up the form -- in terms of the space
18 provided, he filled those in with specific account
19 information, but then he -- he apparently attached a copy
20 of the entire report to the dispute letter and asked that
21 you investigate everything in it. Is that correct
?
22 A. Yes. I believe that's part of the dispute.
23 Q. Okay. Do you know if you all initiated a full --
24 a full reinvestigation of all of the accounts on the credit
25 report?

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1 A. I believe that we did not do all of them.
2 Q. Did you all respond to Mr. Jensen and tell him,
3 "No. We're not going to do what you've asked us to do," or
4 "We're not going to do a complete reinvestigation of all of
5 the accounts," or what happened?
6 A. I believe, as a result of this, we investigated
7 the specific accounts. I believe that when the agent went
8 in to enter his information, he found that there were some
9 accounts that he could see were not related to him
.
10 I believe that he -- the particular agent, he or she,
11 sent out system letters to Mr. Jensen indicating that we
12 needed to have specific disputes and for him to please
13 contact us by phone so we could help
.
14 Q. If Mr. Jensen supplied you with a copy of Exhibit
15 No. 1, which we've marked -- that's the February 1998
16 credit report which is the only one that he had received at
17 that point in time and, in fact, corresponds to the -- to
18 the reinvestigation form -- and he said, "Reinvestigate all
19 of these." He indicates that there's a number of problems
20 with the report, a number of errors and disputes, isn't
21 that specific enough?
22 A. No, to answer you. But I want to clarify one
23 thing. I don't believe this is the report that he sent in.

24 I believe there's a March that he actually received from
25 Experian. I may be mistaken, but I know there was a March

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1 disclosure, I believe.
2 Q. I'm sorry. I've seen a March disclosure from
3 Trans Union, but I do not have a copy of a March Experian
4 disclosure.
5 A. I had thought that he had had a contact in March
6 before us. I could be wrong.
7 But to answer your question: A request to investigate
8 all accounts without a specific reason -- not mine, paid in
9 full -- is not specific. So we would do the best we can to
10 see if, indeed, there are some of the accounts that aren't
11 related to him.

12 We would investigate any information that we had
13 specifically, but we would ask questions as to the others
14 because just a statement, we -- you investigate all
15 accounts -- if we have to send verification forms out to
16 those creditors, we would not be able to be explicit
17 enough.

18 Q. Would you agree or disagree that Experian issued
19 dispute reinvestigation requests to some of its subscribers
20 indicating, based upon this correspondence from Mr. Jensen,
21 that these accounts were not his?
22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Well, if you knew that they were not his and
24 that's what his complaint was, why could that same dispute
25 have not been lodged to all of the creditors appearing on


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1 the report?
2 A. Because there's no way of knowing if -- if he was
3 disputing all of the accounts as not his. He specifically
4 stated certain ones were not, but that's not explicit
5 enough for us to know that all of the accounts were not
6 his.

7 Q. Did Mr. Jensen provide you with information on how
8 to contact him?
9 A. There is an address and there is a telephone
10 number.

11 Q. Did anyone telephone Mr. Jensen to ask, you know,
12 about more specifics if they believed that there was not
13 specific enough dispute?
14 A. That is not part of our process. We usually
15 correspond by mail.

16 Q. But there's nothing that would have prevented one
17 of the consumer representatives in Allen, Texas, from
18 contacting Mr. Jensen, right?
19 A. That's true, but we usually do it by mail.
20 Q. Okay. Well, if -- if Mr. Jensen was truly
21 disputing all of the accounts on the report and indicating
22 a number of major items that he was complaining about, it
23 would seem that he's got a pretty serious problem with that
24 credit report, true?
25 A. I would say that he felt like he had a lot of

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1 inaccuracies on the report, which is why we sent him out
2 immediately a notice to contact us.

3 Q. But didn't the agent indicate -- I think you told
4 me a moment ago the agent pulled up the report and actually
5 noticed that there were accounts merged into Mr. Jensen's
6 file which should not have been there?
7 A. That's true.

8 Q. If the agent recognized that fact, wouldn't that
9 prompt some sort of additional assistance on the part of
10 Experian to find out what type of problems this man's
11 having as a result of these erroneous credit reports?
12 A. That's not -- our normal process is to contact
13 them by mail. The fact that he was able to do as much as
14 he could by matching up social security numbers and
15 addresses that he indicated were not his is enough for us
16 to go ahead and investigate those items.
17 But items that matched up to his personal
18 identification information, we would not have known whether
19 to dispute them as not mine or paid in full or not -- never
20 late.

21 Q. What about the -- the Chase account and the Elan
22 Financial account we talked about a moment ago that had no
23 information corresponding to the plaintiff, Jim Jensen --
24 James Jensen? Why would those have not been part of that
25 process immediately upon the agent reviewing it?

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1 A. Well, there again, we don't know if they didn't
2 have a particular name and address. But if it has no -- no
3 distinctive delineation of not belonging to the other
4 consumer, we would have wanted the consumer to tell us
5 that.

6 Q. I guess maybe we're playing a game of semantics.
7 I want to make sure we're clear though. Mr. Jensen said
8 "Reinvestigate all of this stuff," and he specified as many
9 as he could on the form that was provided. He specified
10 individual account reportings that he said were not mine.
11 Experian received it. Their agent pulled up the file,
12 immediately noticed that there was a merged file situation
13 with erroneous information patently appearing in it; could
14 have telephoned Mr. Jensen, but that's not part of the
15 procedure; and, instead, sent out a single CDV to Discover
16 Card Services, which is Nova Services, indicating the
17 dispute reason as 002, the code, which means belongs to
18 another individual with a same or similar name; is that
19 true?
20 A. Yes.
21 MR. Szwak: Let's mark that as No. 3, please.
22 (Exhibit No. 3 was marked.)
23 Q. (BY MR. Szwak) So as a result of Mr. Jensen's
24 complaints, one CDV was sent?
25 A. That's true. And that -- the CDV was -- was sent

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1 as a result of an explicit dispute from him and one that we
2 could not match up to other identification information.

3 Q. What about the other specific items that were
4 listed in the dispute form there?
5 A. I don't see -- I know in other previous or
6 successive disputes, those items were not on the file at
7 that point in time. I don't know if these were moved.
8 Possibly these were, and I'd have to look at the D/R log
9 because I can't remember.

10 Q. Do you believe the CRS agent had the ability --
11 the authority to delete whichever items that CRS agent,
12 whoever it may have been, determined to have been mixed
13 into Mr. Jensen's file?
14 A. Yes. The agent, if he was able to match it up
15 with the other person's identification information, would
16 have moved and deleted it from Mr. Jensen's file.

17 Q. And the actual CRS agent has the authority to do
18 that? He does not have to transfer the file to a different
19 department?
20 A. If that file had been in a mixed file department,
21 and I believe there's indications on the D/R log that it
22 was transferred to mixed file.

23 Q. The file was transferred from the originating CRS
24 agent to the mixed file department?
25 A. Yes. I believe there's notations that indicate

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1 that.

2 Q. And the mixed file department actually issued the
3 single CDV that is marked as Exhibit No. 3?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Do we know who the agent was in the mixed file
6 department that handled that?
7 A. We would be able to tell the agent badge number.
8 Offhand, I don't know names.
9 Q. The Experian No. 159, which I'll mark with a --
10 Exhibit No. 4, indicates a badge number RM-017075. Do you
11 know -- and it also indicates a second operator as
12 PG-020917. Do you know either one of those persons?
13 A. No.
14 (Exhibit No. 4 was marked.)
15 Q. There is another agent badge number listed in
16 connection with the same activity in March as AB-021712.
17 Do you know that person?
18 A. No.
19 Q. There is a fourth -- well, I'm sorry. This is
20 apparently from November, but it's stapled as part of this.
21 Let me show you Exhibit No. 4 and see if you agree
22 with me that it appears there's at least three Experian
23 employees who were acting upon this file in March of 1998.
24 (Witness reviewed document.)
25 A. Yes, it does.

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1 Q. And what they did in response was to send a single
2 CDV which is not shown in Exhibit No. 4, or is it?
3 A. Well, this is a disclosure request log, so this
4 means these are all of the agents that actually generated
5 reports for Mr. Jensen.
6 Q. I'm sorry. You're right. That's not a D/R log;
7 that's a disclosure log. But those actually show three
8 different Experian CRS/mixed file department people who
9 came in contact with Mr. Jensen's problem in March of 1998?
10 A. It -- they all may not have been mixed file
11 people. It just indicates three agents that came in
12 contact with it. It could have been -- as -- and we need
13 the D/R log to tell us, probably, a more adequate story.
14 Q. Okay. Is there any way to determine which
15 department those different employees were in, based upon
16 their badge number?
17 A. No.
18 Q. So we would have to just decode those and then
19 determine which department or division or team that they're
20 assigned to?
21 A. Yes.