United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
B. Zagel United States District Judge.
case, Plaintiff Lusvina Paz alleges that the Defendant
Portfolio Recovery Associates (PRA) provided credit
information about her to three credit reporting agencies
without informing those agencies that she had disputed her
debt. Paz argues that this failure to provide information
violates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C.
§ 1692 et. seq. (FDCPA).
Paz and PRA now file for summary judgment. For the reasons
stated below, the Court denies PRA's motion and grants
following facts are undisputed. Plaintiff Lusvina Paz
incurred a debt on a Capital One Bank credit card and went
delinquent on that debt on August 26, 2010. The amount of
debt listed on the account was $949.02. Paz has testified
that the card was used primarily for purchasing food.
Defendant Portfolio Recovery Associates purchased the debt on
August 19, 2013.
mailed Paz a demand letter on January 17, 2014, and Paz never
made any payment to PRA following this demand letter. Paz
testified that she never viewed her credit report following
this demand letter nor did she reach out by phone to PRA.
Paz's daughter-in-law, Linda Paz, put Paz in touch with
the Debtors Legal Clinic regarding legal representation.
Lusvina does not speak English, so she brought Linda as a
translator for her meeting with the Debtors Legal Clinic. In
her deposition, Lusvina says she was not sure who she spoke
with during this meeting, but her daughter-in-law testified
that they met with an attorney named Michael Wood. Paz
testified that at the time of this meeting she thought that
she only owed $400 but could have been mistaken about that
the meeting with Wood, another attorney at Debtors Legal
Clinic, Andrew Finko, faxed a letter to PRA. This letter
stated in part that “the amount reported is not
accurate.” The letter was four paragraphs long and also
informed PRA that Debtors Legal Clinic would be representing
Paz and that Paz could not pay the debt because she was
insolvent. This letter was faxed to PRA's general counsel
on September 12, 2014. Paz testified that she did not
remember discussing this letter with any attorney at the
Debtors Legal Clinic or even talking to Andrew Finko.
PRA received this letter, PRA communicated information
regarding Paz's account to three credit reporting
agencies, Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. When providing
information about Paz, PRA did not say that Paz had disputed
the amount of debt.
judgment should be granted when “the pleadings,
depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on
file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there
is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the
moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of
law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). A genuine issue of triable
fact exists only if “the evidence is such that a
reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
party.” Pugh v. City of Attica, Ind.,
259 F.3d 619, 625 (7th Cir. 2001) (quoting Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986)).
considering the Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment,
the Court considers the facts in the light most favorable to
the Defendant, and when considering the Defendant's
Motion for Summary Judgment, the facts are considered in the
light most favorable to the Plaintiff. See First State
Bank of Monticello v. Ohio Cas. Ins. Co., 555 F.3d 564,
567 (7th Cir. 2009) (“[B]ecause the district court had
cross-motions for summary judgment before it, we construe all
facts and inferences therefrom in favor of the party against
whom the motion under consideration is made.”)
(internal quotation marks omitted).
contends that Paz lacks Article III standing to sue in
federal court because she cannot show that she suffered an
injury. To establish Article III standing, a plaintiff must
show “(1) an ‘injury in fact, ' that is,
‘an invasion of a legally protected interest which
is...concrete and particularized, and...actual or
imminent'; (2) a causal connection between the injury and
the challenged conduct, meaning that the injury is
‘fairly traceable' to the challenged conduct; and
(3) a likelihood ‘that the injury will be redressed by
a favorable decision.'” Dunnet Bay Const. Co.
v. Borggren, 799 F.3d 676, 688 (7th Cir. 2015) (quoting
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife, 504 U.S. 555, 560-61
(1992)). PRA argues that Paz has not suffered an
“injury in fact, ” citing the recent Supreme
Court decision in Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, 136 S.Ct.
Spokeo, the Court considered whether a violation of
a statutory right granted by the Fair Credit Reporting Act
(FCRA) was a sufficient injury in fact to maintain an action
in federal court. Id. at 1544. The defendant website
operator generated a consumer report that inaccurately
reported the plaintiff's marital status, age, employment
status, salary, and educational history. Id. at
1546. The plaintiff alleged that the website operator
violated the FCRA by generating this report, but the
plaintiff did not allege that he suffered any monetary harm
as a result of the FCRA violation. Id. The Supreme
Court held that a violation of the FCRA alone was
insufficient for Article III standing, as the plaintiff was
also required to show a “concrete harm” that
flowed from the statutory violation. Id. at 1549.
The Court specifically limited its holding, noting that
“the violation of a procedural right granted by statute
can be sufficient in some circumstances to constitute injury
in fact.” Id. Among those circumstances are
cases where a statutory violation creates the “risk of