Re: collection agency hard inquiry leagal?
12-12-2012 05:47 PM
Not true...permissable purpose is required for soft or hard pull...but FCRA specifically states that in order to do a hard pull (they use different language, they state an iquiry that is viewable by everyone) that you must have PP as well as it must be initiated by the consumer...this is a response I found on another site that clears it up pretty good...
The concept of HARD-vs-SOFT has nothing directly to do withe the FCRA. It is a business angle the CRA's created to "add value" to thier existence. They track HARD inquires as a way of showing prospective creditors (the people paying commercial rate $$ for your credit report) what credit you have been applying for lately. This is valuable information for the prospective creditor to know before deciding to loan you money.
So this entire catagory of INQUIRIES and what is shown to credit report USERS other than YOU the consumer, is a business product catagory the CRA's have invented for themselves using a hole in the FCRA, where the FCRA doesn't actually dictate anything about WHO ELSE can be shown your inquiry history.
All the FCRA does is dictate what PERMISSABLE PURPOSE a particular type of USER has. The good thing for the consumer is, the CRA's have tied the PP to the hard/soft aspect they invented. So The CRA's themselves have EXTENDED the reach of the FCRA into enforcing PP-vs-Inquiry Coding.
A collection agency, collection attorney, JDB, etc does NOT have PERMISSABLE PURPOSE under 1681b(a)(2) or 1681b(a)(3)(A). These are the PPs that generate HARD inquiries. They involve YOU and a CREDIT TRANSACTION or an application for credit or insurance... PERIOD.
The collector's only have PP under 1681b(a)(3)(F)(ii) which does not generate a HARD inquiry. It is the generic catchall "other" business PP.
The tie in is all USERS must file certificates with the CRA as a business stating thier purpose for accessing reports. If they tell the truth on the certificate, they are authorized for 1681b(a)(3)(F)(ii) as a collector. If they lie on the certificate to get access under 1681b(a)(2) or 1681b(a)(3)(A) then you have them by the short hairs. If they have a legit certification BUT pull using a code OTHER THAN the one thier cert covers, you have them by the short hairs.
The key is, you must subpeona the CRA to turn over all the communications involving you/cra/collector as well as the certifications filed by the collector....so YOU can prove to the court they deliberately obtained your report under FALSE PRETENSES.
If they have violated any laws in this regard, the act of you obtaining the subpeona may be all that is required to get the USER (the collector that made the inquires) to contact the CRA and FIX the incorrect catagorization as HARD instead of SOFT. Let them lie to the CRA about why that happened, so long as they fix it.
But this battle has only been fought a couple times I've heard of, and resulted in settlements, so no caselaw in court exists yet using this strategy.
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