In SimmsParris v. Countrywide Financial Corp., — F.3d —-, 2011 WL 3196079 (3d Cir. 2011), the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirmed FCRA’s statutory framework that a consumer must first dispute a report with the CRA in order to maintain a cause of action under 15 U.S.C. § 1681s–2(b).
In the present case, SimmsParris did not comply with the statutory framework before bringing suit against CFC and CHL. First, as noted above, she, along with all private litigants, is unable to maintain a cause of action under 15 U.S.C. § 1681s–2(a). Second, as she did not provide notice of a dispute prior to this suit to the consumer reporting agency that reported the information to which she objected, that agency could never provide notice to CFC or CHL pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1681i(a)(2), and in the absence of such notice, CFC and CHL were not obligated under the FCRA to undertake any investigation under § 1681s–2(b). The District Court did not err in determining that a consumer reporting agency must be a “player” in any private cause of action brought against a furnisher of information pursuant to the FCRA insofar as it was noting that SimmsParris was required to provide notice of a dispute to the reporting agency that disseminated the allegedly false statement before maintaining suit under the FCRA. Such a requirement is plain on the face of the statute, and the District Court did not err in granting summary judgment.