DirectTV is facing a proposed class action lawsuit over allegations the direct-to-home digital TV service provider routinely conducts hard credit pulls on its customers without their knowledge or permission.
Plaintiff Jon Wulf Amadeus Adler brought this class action lawsuit against DirectTV last week in California federal court, claiming violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).
The FCRA was by passed by Congress in 1970 to ensure fair and accurate reporting of credit and protect consumers’ privacy. In line with this, the FCRA prohibits users of a person’s credit report from obtaining consumer reports unless the user has a permissible purpose for running the report.
Adler contends he never had any prior interaction or relationship with DirectTV and doesn’t even subscribe to the cable service. He was shocked to discover that he was subject to an unauthorized hard credit pull by the company, which adversely impacted his credit score.
Upon learning of the unauthorized hard pull by DirectTV, Adler contacted the company in the hopes of resolving the issue, removing the inquiry, and resolving the negative effects on his credit score. The lawsuit notes that Adler spoke with DirectTV’s service representatives and complained about the issue. Therefore, DirectTV was aware of the hard credit pulls not initiated by consumers.
According to the DirectTV class action lawsuit, this seems to be a common business practice for DirectTV. Many consumers, including Adler and the proposed Class, often are not even aware of the hard credit pulls until they view their own credit reports, which is a little too late, since these DirectTV hard credit pulls have already negatively affected their credit scores.
“Plaintiff and the Proposed Class Members were shocked, embarrassed, and felt a sense of personal and identity insecurity due to [DirectTV]’s willful conduct,” the complaint states.
Sadly, DirectTV is not the only company who has been recently accused of unauthorized hard credit pulls. Similar cases have been brought against Comcast Corporation and Social Finance, Inc. for improperly running credit checks on customers. Social Finance, a student loan refinancing company, settled the FCRA violation allegations against them in August 2016 for $2.4 million.
The DirectTV class action lawsuit seeks justice for all persons who were subject to a hard credit inquiry by DirectTV or its affiliates and did not authorize such an inquiry during the last 5 years. Among statutory and punitive damages, the class action lawsuit seeks to recover injunctive relief requiring DirectTV to stop conducting unauthorized credit inquiries.
Adler and the proposed Class are represented by Eric B. Kingsley, Kelsey M. Szamet, and Arthur N. Four of Kingsley & Kingsley APC.
The DirectTV Class Action Lawsuit is Adler, et al. v. DirectTV, et al., Case No. 2:18-cv-01665, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.