Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn
Satellite television company Dish Network has agreed to pay $1.75 million to settle a class action lawsuit over alleged violations of the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) for not providing proper consent and disclosure forms needed to conduct background checks for employment purposes, according to a report on the TopClassActions.com website.
Top Class Actions reports Plaintiff Scott Ernst filed the lawsuit against Dish Network and the company performing the background checks in 2012 and claimed both companies used information in consumer reports to conduct background checks on workers and applicants which is subject to strict disclosure and authorization requirements under the FCRA.
The lawsuit claimed Dish Network implemented a customer safety program where third-party contractors obtained background check reports on contractor technicians who entered the homes of customers. However, Dish Network received only a summary that included a rating of “high risk,” “low risk,” or “review” instead of a complete background check report.
Top Class Actions reports that the lawsuit claims Dish Network used information as a basis for adverse employment actions by rating some technicians as “high risk.” Dish Network maintains it did not intentionally or willfully violate the FCRA. However, the plaintiff Ernst claims his rights as well as those of potential Class Members were violated by:
- Allegedly reporting on information from Class Members that was more than seven years old in violation of the FCRA.
- Allegedly unlawfully procuring consumer reports without receiving proper authorization from Class Members in violation of the FCRA.
- Allegedly failing to disclose their actions in procuring these reports to Class Members in violation of the FCRA.
- Allegedly using undisclosed consumer report information without providing affected Class Members with a copy of the obtained information or a reasonable opportunity to correct any inaccuracies in violation of the FCRA.
The FCRA class action lawsuit is Ernst v. Dish Network LLC, et al., Case No. 1:12-cv-08794, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The complete report from Top Class Actions is available at https://topclassactions.com/lawsuit-settlements/lawsuit-news/344136-dish-network-will-pay-1-75m-settle-background-check-class-action/.
As reported earlier by ESR News, in November 2015 a New York federal judge granted final approval to a $4.75 million settlement against the company performing background checks for Dish Network in Ernst v. Dish Network LLC, et al. for alleged violations of the FCRA by providing outdated information to employers resulting in a loss of employment.
Two Whitepapers from ESR Help Employers Avoid FCRA Lawsuits
Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a global background check firm – offers two complimentary whitepapers that deal with the explosion of class action lawsuits against both employers and Consumer Reporting Agencies (CRAs) involving the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). To learn more about ESR, call 888.999.4474 or visit www.esrcheck.com.
Common Ways Prospective or Current Employees Sue Employers Under the FCRA is a response to the rising trend of lawsuits filed against employers for alleged violations of the federal FCRA that controls background checks in the United States. Download at www.esrcheck.com/Whitepapers/Ways-Employees-Sue-Employers-Under-FCRA/.
Common Ways Consumer Reporting Agencies are Sued Under the FCRA describes eighteen practices that can give rise to FCRA lawsuits against CRAs that employers must keep in mind when choosing a CRA to help them navigate this legally-sensitive area. Download at www.esrcheck.com/Whitepapers/Ways-CRAs-Sued-Under-FCRA/.
NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.
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