Privacy Law Blog

Tag Archives: consumer report

When Reckless Means Willful – High Court Issues Landmark Decision Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act

Since December 4, 2006, consumers have filed dozens of class actions against retailers and other businesses across the country alleging "willful" violations of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act ("FACTA") amendments to the Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA"), prohibiting the printing of more than five digits, or the expiration date, of a credit card on receipts provided to the customer. Defendants in those cases have been waiting anxiously for the Supreme Court to rule in Safeco Insurance Co. of America, et al. v. Burr, et al., 551 U.S. _____ (2007), a factually inapposite matter in which the Court granted certiorari to determine whether "reckless disregard" suffices for willfulness under the statute. In a decision that raises as many questions as it answers, the Supreme Court held on June 4, 2007 that "reckless" failure to comply with FCRA can be considered willful. The Court's opinion begs the question whether it was objectively reasonable for retailers to continue the printing of expiration dates on customer receipts after FACTA took full effect. … Continue Reading
LexBlog