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Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

A class action complaint filed against Marriott Ownership Resorts, Inc. claims the vacation ownership company allegedly violated the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) by failing to adequately disclose and obtain authorization to conduct background checks on job applicants.

The complaint claims the inclusion of a liability release clause in Marriot’s authorization forms invalidated the supposed consent and triggers statutory damages under the FCRA of up to $1,000 for each applicant that obtained a background check without a valid authorization.

The plaintiff, a former employer of Marriot, claims she completed a background check disclosure and consent form that unlawfully included a liability release clause. Under FCRA section 1681b(b)(2)(A), employers procuring a background check report must make sure that:

  • (i) a clear and conspicuous disclosure has been made in writing to the consumer at any time before the report is procured or caused to be procured, in a document that consists solely of the disclosure, that a consumer report may be obtained for employment purposes; and
  • (ii) the consumer has authorized in writing (which authorization may be made on the document referred to in clause (i)) the procurement of the report by that person.

In addition, the complaint claims Marriott allegedly failed to provide their California employees with the legally required thirty (30) minute uninterrupted meal periods and allegedly failed to pay all overtime due to their California employees in violation of the California Labor Code.

The class action complaint was filed by labor and employment law firm Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik on behalf of a California and Nationwide class. A press release with information about the lawsuit is at:

The FCRA and California Labor Code lawsuit McComack vs. Marriott Ownership Resorts, Inc., Case No. 17CV1663BEN WVG filed on August 18, 2017, is currently pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. A copy of the complaint is here.

Enacted in 1970, the FCRA promotes the accuracy, fairness, and privacy of consumer information contained in the files of consumer reporting agencies (CRAs) and protects consumers from the willful and/or negligent inclusion of inaccurate information in their reports.

“More often than not, employers are sued for violating FCRA 101 – simple rules and procedures that are clearly set out in the law,” says Attorney Lester Rosen, founder and CEO of Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), a global background check firm located in California.

In response to the rising trend of class action lawsuits for alleged violations of the FCRA, Rosen, – author of “The Safe Hiring Manual” – has written two complimentary whitepapers that deal with the most common reasons why both employers and CRAs can face legal trouble.

“Common Ways Prospective or Current Employees Sue Employers Under the FCRA” includes nine reasons why employers face FCRA lawsuits from applicants and employees. The whitepaper is at

Rosen also wrote “Common Ways Consumer Reporting Agencies are Sued Under the FCRA” that describes eighteen practices that can give rise to class action lawsuits against CRAs. The whitepaper is at

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) reminds readers that allegations alone made in lawsuits are not proof that a business or person(s) violated any law, rule, or regulation.

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.

© 2017 Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – Making copies or using of any part of the ESR News Blog or ESR website for any purpose other than your own personal use is prohibited unless written authorization is first obtained from ESR.


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