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Landlord Troubles/Is FDCPA or FCRA Applicable?


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Can I sue a past landlord for violations of the FDCPA and/or FCRA?

When my tenancy terminated I was sent an invoice of charges for damages which I disputed. The landlord did not make Michigan's 30-day requirement for notice of damages so technically I should have been given my full security deposit back immediately. I just found this out (two years later). I plan to sue for this under Michigan's Landlord and Tenant Relationships Act. That's another story. So anyways, I paid some of the money the landlord claimed I owed and disputed the rest with a letter. Landlord then reported its claim on my credit which showed the amount as being charged off as bad debt. I disputed this claim with the credit bureau and successfully had it removed. Thought all was well until I was denied credit a year and a half later. I requested a copy of my credit report and there was that claim. The landlord had reported it again without a notice of my dispute. What are my choices???

From what I've researched I can get landlord for FCRA Section 623 and FDCPA Section 807. But the language is confusing. Can I sue the landlord? What about a credit bureau for reinserting a removed item from my credit report without notifying me in writing?

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Don't know what to tell you about the landlord...but as for the CRA, do you have your credit report from before where it shows that the item had been deleted? If so you can send copies to the cra and tell them that they are in violation because they reinserted and didn't notify you within 5 days of it being done.

Good luck!!

paw67

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Even without the prior Credit Report you should still be able the claim failure of 5 day notice demanding the deletion. I did this recently on a re-inserted tradeline w/out submitting documentation and they immediately removed. So don't loose hope that way if you can't find the documenation.

You would most likely have to seek legal advise on the other issue unless some of the others here have an idea on this for you.

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I have a copy of the completed investigation request form that I sent in and a copy of the credit report showing my investigation request had been done and it was taken off. Then I have a copy showing the exact amount I disputed was reported again. I have documentation for everything.

How do I know where to send my complaint?

[Edit by thatyea on Saturday, April 19, 2003 @ 03:45 PM]

[Edit by thatyea on Saturday, April 19, 2003 @ 03:46 PM]

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The top of the most recent credit report has "CBC" along the top and then the name and address of the credit bureau. It looks like CBC is where I got the first credit report showing the claim and that is the company I requested an investigation from and then I was sent another credit report from CBC showing that the claim had been deleted.

I've got an address for CBC Consumer Relations Center. What is this company, and do I need to also contact all three of the big guys (Experian, Equifax and Trans Union) separately to make sure my information is updated correctly? And what about CSC which I guess is an affiliate of Equifax?

Thanks everyone for your help.

[Edit by thatyea on Saturday, April 19, 2003 @ 07:27 PM]

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CSC is an affiliate for Equifax - but in order to know whom you need to dispute with for sure check out this site:

https://www.econsumer.equifax.com/webapp/ConsumerProducts/pgInvestigation

Under Investigation Method - put in your zip code and hit enter; will give you name and address for the agency you will be corresponding with.

CBC might be the affiliate for Equifax; don't know since I am in the midwest and work through CSC myself.

Which ever affiliate CBC is for (you won't have to contact the CRA). Just the other two.

Be sure to check Credit reports for the other two - just because you dispute & update one; don't mean the other ones are taken care of they don't share their information. So pull credit reports for at least transunion & if CBC happens to be Equifax then you will know Experian is the last one needing to be ordered.

www.experian.com

www.transunion.com

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Just for the record. If you want to sue the landlord you must first notify him that he is in violation of the FCRA. Furnishers of information can he held just as liable as the CRAs can for not reportiong 100% accurate information.

Not to mention you have to tell them that they must prove the date of delinquincy and the charge off has to commence 180 days from that.

There are a lot of ways you can get around the bozos.. just take your time and use all the legal loopholes you can

Good luck

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You guys are great. Thanks so much for the help. I've got a draft of a letter to send my landlord telling them I've got 'em for two violations and if they don't do something I will sue. I don't anticipate any problems with clearing my credit report. I just want to make sure the landlord doesn't try to report an inaccurate claim in the future. I'll be sure to post when I have any updates.

Again, THANKS.

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Something else. I was just reading a post by Swede for topic "opinons please" that stated in order to sue under FCRA I must first dispute with the CRA. Is that true and if so is it the same for the FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practises Act) too? And am I spelling "Practises" right? I've only found it spelled with an "s" so I'm not sure. Anyways, so do I just have to inform landlord first it is violation or must I dispute with CRA first too?

Two years ago I had a lawyer send my ex-landlord a letter demanding that it remove the item I had disputed and be advised that reporting it after I have disputed it is inappropriate. Well, the landlord went ahead and reported it again late last year. Seems unfair that I would have to dispute with CRA again when landlord was informed by me and lawyer not to report it. Landlord did and did not include a notice of my dispute.

[Edit by thatyea on Wednesday, April 23, 2003 @ 10:05 PM]

[Edit by thatyea on Wednesday, April 23, 2003 @ 10:07 PM]

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you have him on a slam dunk on this then. If you still have all the information from the lawyer you can go into small claims with that. Did you get denied credit?

If you did you can also sue for the amount of credit you were denied as well as defamation of character.

Send your intent to sue letter and only give him like 30 days to remove it.. if it is not removed then sue him.

Should be an easy $1000

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Ok let me get this straight :confused: the landlord (OC) can be sued for not advising you that they have reported you to the CRA's?? I have a situation where the attorney is reporting it as a collection account (and they have sent me the judgment papers, with mini-miranda and all)

Then is is being listed as a judgement with the courthouse and.....

the OC (landlord) has it listed as well as a collection acct. I am getting dinged three ways...question??? is the landlord required to notify me within five days of reporting to the CRAs also??? Thanks for the clarification.

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<blockquote>Originally posted by thatyea

Something else. I was just reading a post by Swede for topic "opinons please" that stated in order to sue under FCRA I must first dispute with the CRA. Is that true and if so is it the same for the FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practises Act) too? </blockquote>

Of course it's true, didn't you read the links bingo and I provided where it's spelled out? This is for filing suits under the FCRA, not the FDCPA.

<blockquote>Originally posted by thatyea

Anyways, so do I just have to inform landlord first it is violation or must I dispute with CRA first too?

</blockquote>

If you want to file suit against a furnisher under the FCRA you HAVE TO DISPUTE IT with the CRA's first. As per the links I posted.....

Adopting the FTC's position, the court said that it can be inferred from the structure of the statute that Congress did not want furnishers exposed to suit by every consumer dissatisfied with the credit information furnished. Hence, Congress limited the enforcement of the duties imposed under Section 1681s-2(a) to governmental bodies. But it also provided a "filtering mechanism" in Section 1681s-2(B) by making the disputatious consumer notify a CRA and setting the CRA up to receive notice of the investigation by the furnisher. "With this filter in place and opportunity for the furnisher to save itself from liability by taking the steps required by § 1681s-2(B), Congress put no limit on private enforcement under §§ 1681n & o," the court said

<blockquote>Originally posted by thatyea

Two years ago I had a lawyer send my ex-landlord a letter demanding that it remove the item I had disputed and be advised that reporting it after I have disputed it is inappropriate. Well, the landlord went ahead and reported it again late last year. Seems unfair that I would have to dispute with CRA again when landlord was informed by me and lawyer not to report it. Landlord did and did not include a notice of my dispute

</blockquote>

Did you dispute it through the CRA or only with the landlord? If you didn't inform the CRA to investigate, then you have no private right of action to sue the landlord for reporting incorrect information under the FCRA. Fair or unfair, that's how it works.

<blockquote>Originally posted by Sakiawarner

you have him on a slam dunk on this then. If you still have all the information from the lawyer you can go into small claims with that. Did you get denied credit?

If you did you can also sue for the amount of credit you were denied as well as defamation of character.

Send your intent to sue letter and only give him like 30 days to remove it.. if it is not removed then sue him.

Should be an easy $1000

</blockquote>

I don't think anyone planning on suing in small claims should be under the impression that it's an easy $1000 and slam dunk case. First off, small claim judges are NOT well versed, if versed at all, in consumer law and therefore, it's up to you to prove your case. Second, it's not $1000 guaranteed, it's $1000 MAX, but $100 MIN and it's up to the discretion of the court and lastly, you don't have a slam dunk case, you have no case because you don't have a right to sue if you haven't disputed this through the CRA.

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<blockquote>Originally posted by Swede

Of course it's true, didn't you read the links bingo and I provided where it's spelled out? This is for filing suits under the FCRA, not the FDCPA.</blockquote>

I did not read the links, but I will look at them. Thanks.

<blockquote>Originally posted by Swede

Did you dispute it through the CRA or only with the landlord? If you didn't inform the CRA to investigate, then you have no private right of action to sue the landlord for reporting incorrect information under the FCRA. Fair or unfair, that's how it works.</blockquote>

I did dispute it through the CRA. I have a letter saying the investigation was completed along with a copy of my credit report showing the claim had been deleted.

[Edit by thatyea on Thursday, April 24, 2003 @ 10:42 AM]

[Edit by thatyea on Thursday, April 24, 2003 @ 10:43 AM]

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As a result of the inaccurate claim I was denied a $2000 limit credit card. Michigan's small claims court limit is $1750. And I'm suing for $795 for violation of Michigan's Landlord-Tenant Relationship Act in addition to violations of FCRA and FDCPA. If I sue for violation of FCRA, how best could I word my case to try and get the most money out of the jerks?

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  • 1 month later...

Update: Michigan's small claims limit is $3,000. Before I had written that it was $1,750. Wrong info. from my parents. I still love 'em.

I disputed the inaccurate claim with the CRA AGAIN and am waiting to hear back. I demanded the claim be deleted. I also sent a letter to my ex-landlard informing it that I want double my security deposit back as well as other monies I paid for items I disputed all along (Michigan's Landlord-Tenant Relationship Act). The only reason I paid was because I was threatened with garnishment, which was in violation of the FDCA come to find out. I also informed landlord of its violation of the FCRA when it reported the claim without a notice of my dispute. If I don't hear back by the end of the week I will be filing in small claims court.

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<blockquote>Originally posted by Rainbowspal

Ok let me get this straight :confused: the landlord (OC) can be sued for not advising you that they have reported you to the CRA's?? I have a situation where the attorney is reporting it as a collection account (and they have sent me the judgment papers, with mini-miranda and all)

Then is is being listed as a judgement with the courthouse and.....

the OC (landlord) has it listed as well as a collection acct. I am getting dinged three ways...question??? is the landlord required to notify me within five days of reporting to the CRAs also??? Thanks for the clarification.

</blockquote>

I'm not suing because the landlord failed to notify me it was reporting the claim with a CRA. I am suing because I disputed the claim with the landlord (in writing, certified mail), I disputed with the CRA and had the claim removed, and then the landlord reported the claim again without a notice of my dispute (FCRA). CRA shouldn't have reinserted the claim without notifying me within five days.

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<blockquote>Originally posted by thatyea

I've got an address for CBC Consumer Relations Center. What is this company... </blockquote>

CBC, I've found out, is affiliated with Trans Union.

[Edit by thatyea on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 @ 08:51 PM]

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