United States District Court, N.D. Florida, Pensacola Division
ORDER AND REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
CHARLES J. KAHN, JR. UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
matter is before the court on defendants Midland Funding LLC
and Tim Boland's motion to dismiss (doc. 14) and
defendant Great Lakes Educational Loan Services, Inc.'s
motion to dismiss (doc. 20). Plaintiff responded in
opposition to the motions. (Docs. 18, 24). The matter is
referred to the undersigned Magistrate Judge for a Report and
Recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636 and N.D. Fla.
Loc. R. 72.2(E). After reviewing the parties'
submissions, the undersigned recommends that the motions to
dismiss be granted because the amended complaint fails to
state a claim against the defendants for a violation of the
Fair Credit Reporting Act. Plaintiff's claims, however,
should be dismissed without prejudice to him filing a second
proceeding pro se, filed an amended complaint naming
6 defendants; (1) Midland Funding LLC
(“Midland”); (2) Tim Boland, a manager at
Midland; (3) Great Lakes Educational Services, Inc.
(“Great Lakes”); (4) Equifax; (5) TransUnion; and
(6) Experian. Plaintiff says he asked the defendants for: (1)
“account records (original)”; (2)
“documentation showing whether Midland Funding or Great
Lakes are licensed, bonded, or insured”; (3) “the
original contract or promissory note”; and (4)
‘documentation showing why [his social security number]
was sold to a third party debt collector.” Defendants
did not provide the requested information. Plaintiff claims
“these companies have blatantly tarnished [his] credit
report.” He alleges each defendant violated the Fair
Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), 15 U.S.C. §
1681 et seq. As relief, he seeks punitive damages of
$580, 000 “for hardship, harassment, fraud, and the
selling of private information.” Midland, Boland, and
Great Lakes moved to dismiss the amended complaint, arguing
they cannot be held liable under the FCRA for failing to
provide the requested information.
considering a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim,
the court reads plaintiff's pro se allegations
in a liberal fashion, Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S.
519, 520-21 (1972), accepts all factual allegations in the
complaint as true, and evaluates all reasonable inferences
derived from those facts in the light most favorable to the
plaintiff. Hunnings v. Texaco, Inc., 29 F.3d 1480,
1483 (11th Cir. 1994). A few exceptions modify this rule,
such as where the facts alleged are internally inconsistent
or where they run counter to facts of which the court can
take judicial notice. 5B Charles A. Wright and Arthur R.
Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure § 1357
(2008). Further, only well-pleaded factual
allegations are taken as true and only reasonable
inferences are drawn in favor of the plaintiff. See
Oladeinde v. City of Birmingham, 963 F.2d 1481, 1485
(11th Cir. 1992); see also Associated Builders, Inc. v.
Ala. Power Co., 505 F.2d 97, 100 (5th Cir. 1974)
(“unwarranted deductions of fact are not admitted as
true”). Mere “labels and conclusions” are
not accepted as true. Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly,
550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (citing Papasan v. Allain,
478 U.S. 265, 286 (1986)) (noting courts “are not bound
to accept as true a legal conclusion couched as a factual
allegation”); Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
680-81 (2009) (explaining that conclusory allegations are not
entitled to a presumption of truth).
Supreme Court reiterated in Iqbal, although Rule 8
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure does not require
detailed factual allegations, it does demand “more than
an unadorned, the-defendant-unlawfully-harmed-me
accusation.” 556 U.S. at 678. A complaint must state a
plausible claim for relief, and “[a] claim has facial
plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that
allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the
defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Id. The mere possibility the defendant acted
unlawfully is insufficient to survive dismissal for failure
to state a claim. Id. The complaint must include
“[f]actual allegations . . . [sufficient] to raise a
right to relief above the speculative level, ”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555, or, “nudge the
claim across the line from conceivable to
plausible[.]” Id. at 570.
enacted the Fair Credit Reporting Act to ensure ‘fair
and accurate credit reporting.'” Pedro v.
Equifax, Inc., 868 F.3d 1275, 1280 (11th Cir. 2017)
(quoting 15 U.S.C. § 1681(a)(1)). “The
FCRA imposes a host of requirements concerning the creation
and use of consumer reports.” Spokeo, Inc. v.
Robins, - U.S. -, 136 S.Ct. 1540, 1545 (2016). Section
1681s-2(b) of the FCRA imposes obligations on furnishers of
consumer credit information. These obligations, however are
only triggered by “indirect” disputes-that is,
when a furnisher receives notice from a consumer reporting
agency that a consumer disputes certain information.
See 15 U.S.C. § 1681i(a)(2); Green v. RBS
Nat'l Bank, 288 F. App'x 641, 642 (11th Cir.
2008) (“The FCRA does provide a private right of action
for a violation of § 1681s-2(b), but only if the
furnisher received notice of the consumer's dispute from
a consumer reporting agency.”) (citing 15
U.S.C. § 1681s-2(b)(1)). Section 1681s-2(b) states that
after receiving such notice, a furnisher shall:
(A) conduct an investigation with respect to the disputed
(B) review all relevant information provided by the consumer
reporting agency pursuant to section 1681i(a)(2) of this
(C) report the results of the investigation to the consumer
(D) if the investigation finds that the information is
incomplete or inaccurate, report those results to all other
consumer reporting agencies to which the person furnished the
information and that compile and maintain files on consumers
on a nationwide basis; and
(E) if an item of information disputed by a consumer is found
to be inaccurate or incomplete or cannot be verified after
any reinvestigation under paragraph (1), for purposes of
reporting to a consumer reporting agency only, as