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AG James joins group that plans to enforce Fair Credit Reporting Act

May 1, 2020 Rob Abruzzese
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The New York State attorney general and her counterparts from 21 other states don’t think that the federal government is doing enough to enforce the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) or the Fair Credit Reporting Act to protect consumer credit scores during the COVID-19 pandemic, so they have promised to step up to pick up the slack.

Attorney General Letitia James has signed a letter with 21 other attorneys general to the three major consumer reporting agencies to warn them that the attorneys general will enforce safeguards set in place to protect consumers and hold the consumer reporting agencies accountable if they fail to meet their obligations.

“This is about protecting consumers’ wallets in the future and ensuring the economic fallout of the coronavirus will not impede efforts to go on living the way we were before this pandemic began,” said Attorney General James. “In this period of economic turmoil, these consumer protections are more important than ever, which is why our coalition is committed to protecting consumers and enforcing all federal and state requirements. If the federal government refuses to do its job during this crisis, our coalition will not hesitate to take charge.”

The letter is addressed to the CEOs of Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. In it, the attorneys general state that they are specifically monitoring furnishers to ensure they don’t improperly report negative information, and the attorneys general say they want to ensure that these reporting agencies are properly investigating all disputes.

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The group also reminded the reporting agencies of their obligations to the state and thanked them for their cooperation in the past.

“This CARES Act provision is critically important both to individual consumers and to the overall recovery of the economy because it ensures that consumers obtain essential relief without jeopardizing their future ability to secure employment, rent or buy a home, obtain a credit card, or purchase a car,” the attorneys general wrote in their letter. “The state Attorneys General expect compliance with this vital provision of the CARES Act, and we will actively monitor for and enforce such compliance.”

James was joined by attorneys general from the following states: California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.

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