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JP Morgan Chase Bank FCRA Inaccurate Information Class Action

JP Morgan Chase

The complaint for this class action alleges that JP Morgan Chase furnished inaccurate information about plaintiff Mark Donald Hunt, in connection with a mortgage, to the three major credit agencies—Experian, Trans Union, and Exquifax—over a period of twenty-two months, for sixty-six violations of the FCRA.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) was designed to protect consumers from inaccurate reports issued by credit reporting agencies (CRAs). Its amendments impose legal requirements on parties such as JP Morgan Chase who furnish information about consumers to CRAs. One of these requirements is that companies must provide accurate information.

The class proposed for this class action includes all persons living in the US who meet the following conditions:

  • They are “consumers” under the terms of the FCRA;
  • They had a loan or mortage with JP Morgan Chase Bank, National Association;
  • JP Morgan Chase accelerated the loan, turning all future repayment installments into one lump sum; and
  • They were harmed because JP Morgan Chase sent inaccurate information about them to CRAs after the acceleration.

In this case, according to the complaint, on January 28, 2013, plaintiff Hunt was sent an “Acceleration Warning (Notice of Intent to Foreclose)” stating that he was in default on his mortgage because he had failed to pay his monthly installments since December 1, 2012. The Warning, the complaint claims, required that Hunt pay the past-due amount within 35 days or “Chase may Accelerate the maturity of the Loan, declare all sums secured by the Security Instrument immediately due and payable, and commence foreclosure…”

The complaint adds that the Warning included a contradictory paragraph saying that “if permitted by your loan documents or applicable law,” Hunt could “reinstate after acceleration” but did not provide any details as to how this could be done. The following paragraph, the complaint says, notes that if Hunt sent less than “the full amount owed”, the company might apply the amount to his loan without waiving any rights to continue with foreclosure.

The complaint alleges that the Warning’s statements that Hunt might be able to reinstate “were illusory at best”; it alleges that there was no indication that, once the company made a declaration of acceleration, Hunt would have been allowed to make monthly payments again, and no mechanism for such payments to be made.

In May 2013, JP Morgan Chase filed a verified complaint to foreclose the mortgage (VCFM) stating that the company “declares the full amount payable under the Note and Mortgage to be due and payable”. In doing that, the complaint claims, the company was “maturing all future monthly payments into one lump sum plus interest immediately due.” At this point, the complaint says, Hunt no longer has the ability or obligation to make monthly payments.

Yet for twenty-two months, from May 2013 to December 2015, the complaint says, JP Morgan Chase continued to tell credit reporting agencies that Hunt had missed monthly payments, even though under the VCFM such payments were no longer an option. The complaint thus claims that JP Morgan Chase was guilty of willful and negligent noncompliance with the FCRA.

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