Default Judgment Granted Against Star Loan Management in FCRA Litigation
On June 22, 2000, Judge Miranda M. Du of the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada granted Plaintiff’s motion for default judgment, statutory damages, reasonable costs, and attorney’s fees in the case of McGuire v. Allegro Acceptance Corp, No. 2:18-cv-01635-MMD-VCF, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 109728 (D. Nev. June 22, 2020). McGuire arose from a dispute over inaccuracies in Plaintiff’s Star Loan Management (“SLM”) account on her June 22, 2017 Experian credit report. The report in question contained a recent balance notation of $2,107, which Plaintiff alleged was “inaccurate and misleading” because a recent bankruptcy had discharged the debt. Plaintiff notified Experian of this inaccuracy on September 21, 2017 and although Experian thereafter notified SLM of the dispute, SLM failed to investigate and update the notation. SLM’s failure to act is a violation under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), 15 U.S.C. § 1681.
Plaintiff filed her Complaint against SLM on August 29, 2018 and served her Complaint and Summons on SLM on October 22, 2018. On June 14, 2019, Plaintiff filed a Motion for Entry of Default and the Clerk entered default against SLM. On June 3, 2020, Plaintiff filed the subject motion. Ultimately, the Court found that the Eitel factors (see Eitel v. McCool, 782 F.2d 1470, 1471 (9th Cir. 1986)) weighed in Plaintiff’s favor, noting, “SLM has not answered, made an appearance, or otherwise responded … [i]f Plaintiff’s request for default judgment is not granted, Plaintiff will be without other resources for recovery.” Plaintiff’s monetary requests were granted ($1,000 in statutory damages, $525 in reasonable costs, and $2,833.50 in attorneys’ fees) because the FCRA provides for attorney’s fees for statutory violations and allows plaintiffs to recover costs for any successful action to enforce the section for willful violations.