In Mortimer v. Bank of America, N.A. 2012 WL 6218004 (N.D.Cal. 2012), Judge Spero addressed the interplay between bankrupt debt and credit reporting, finding that Plaintiff stated no FCRA or CCRAA claim. The facts were as follows:
Plaintiff Mark Mortimer (“Plaintiff”) brings this action against Defendant Bank of America, N.A., (“Defendant”) FN1 seeking redress for Defendant’s alleged inaccurate reporting of his discharged debt. . . . On November 3, 2009 Plaintiff filed a voluntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Cali-fornia. Complaint at ¶ 12. On February 8, 2010, the court granted a discharge of all dischargeable debts pursuant to 11 U.S.C. Section 727. Id. at ¶ 15 and Ex. B. The bankruptcy discharged Plaintiff’s debt to De-fendant. Id. On April 21, 2011, Plaintiff sent a letter to Expe-rian, a credit reporting agency, claiming that several accounts discharged through Plaintiff’ s bankruptcy were being inaccurately reported, and requesting an investigation of those reports. Id. at ¶ 16 and Ex. A. As to Plaintiff’s account with Defendant, Plaintiff stated, “This account was included in my bankruptcy. This account should not be reporting a high balance, lates, charge-offs, and should be reflecting a zero balance. Remove these delinquent items now.” Id. at Ex. A. On June 4, 2011, Plaintiff received a new copy of his Experian credit report (“Experian Report”) to verify that the alleged inaccuracies were corrected. Id. at ¶ 17 and Ex. C. This report states that the ac-count in question was “Discharged through Bank-ruptcy Chapter 7,” had a current account balance of $0, and was “closed” in the months of December 2009 and January 2010. Id. at Ex. C. On March 15, 2012, Plaintiff obtained a copy of his Service 1st credit report (“Service 1st Report”). Id. at ¶ 17 and Ex. D. The Service 1st credit report is a compilation of credit reports from the three major credit reporting agencies, Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Id. The Service 1st Report indicates that its data from Experian show that the account in question was “Closed at Consumer’s Request; Bankruptcy Chapter 7,” had a current account balance and a past due balance of $0, and that the account was 30 days past due in December 2009 and 60 days past due in January 2010. Id. at Ex. D. The Service 1st data from TransUnion and Equifax are the same except that they do not show any indication that the account was ever past due. Id. Based on the above, Plaintiff alleges that Defen-dant re-reported disputed information, that Plaintiff’s account was open and delinquent in December 2009 and January 2010, to Experian even though Plaintiff had filed for bankruptcy. Id. at ¶ 18. Plaintiff further alleges that Defendant failed to report that this infor-mation was disputed. Id. In support of this allegation, Plaintiff states that he was not required to make any payments to Defendant after filing a bankruptcy peti-tion. Id. at ¶ 31.
Judge Spero found no FCRA violation because the Plaintiff’s dispute, in the first instance, was without merit. Judge Spero explained that “At some time thereafter, Defendant adjusted its report to Experian to state that the account in question was “Closed at Consumer’s Request; Bankruptcy Chapter 7,” had a current account balance and a past due bal-ance of $0, and that the account was 30 days past due in December 2009 and 60 days past due in January 2010, as demonstrated by the Service 1st Report.FN3 As discussed above, this information was factually accurate. Thus, Plaintiff’ s dispute was without merit. Moreover, even if Plaintiff were to contend that De-fendant’s inconsistent listing of the account as “closed” during that period was inaccurate, Plaintiff has not alleged any damages arising therefrom. For those reasons, Plaintiff’s FCRA claim is dismissed with leave to amend.” Judge Spero found that Plaintiff stated no CCRAA claim either, for the same reason. Judge Spero found the remaining common law tort claims pre-empted by FCRA.
District courts have struggled to reconcile the two provisions because Section 1681 h(e) appears to permit certain state law tort claims, whereas 1681t(b)(1)(F) appears to preempt both state statutory and common law claims. Subhani, 2012 WL 1980416 at *3. Although the Ninth Circuit has not addressed the issue, both the Second and Seventh Circuits have concluded that Section 1681t(b)(1) (F) sweeps more broadly than Section 1681 h(e), pre-empting all statutory and common law actions within its purview. See Purcell v. Bank of America, 659 F.3d 622, 624–25 (7th Cir.2011); Macpherson v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., 665 F.3d 45, 48 (2d Cir.2011); Subhani, 2012 WL 1980416 at *3. This Court joins a number of district courts in this circuit in adopting this approach. See Subhani, 2012 WL 1980416 at *4 (collecting cases).