The Sixth Circuit recently affirmed a district court’s decision that the Fair Credit Reporting Act’s statute of limitations commences upon the discovery of facts giving rise to a violation in Rocheleau v. Elder Living Construction, LLC.    

In the underlying suit, Plaintiff Richard Rocheleau alleged that Defendants Elder Living Construction, LLC and First Advantage LSN Screening Solutions, Inc. wrongfully obtained a background report on him.   

The background report was ordered on September 15, 2011.  The next day, Rocheleau was notified by mail of the reporting of certain public record information.  Rocheleau also received a September 19 notice advising him that information reported on his background report may adversely affect his employment status.  Eventually, on September 26, Rocheleau was notified that he would not be hired.  While Rocheleau called the background screening company multiple times to complain about the report being provided without his consent, he never disputed the accuracy or completeness of the information contained in the report.  Rocheleau filed suit more than two years later on November 25, 2013. 

Relying on persuasive Fifth Circuit precedent, the Sixth Circuit adopted the reasoning in Mack v. Equable Ascent Financial, L.L.C., which held that the limitations period commences when a plaintiff discovers the credit report had been obtained without his consent.  The Sixth Circuit rejected Rocheleau’s argument that the limitations period should have been tolled under § 1681s-2(b) while he disputed the information in the report finding that “at no point has [Plaintiff] disputed the ‘completeness or accuracy’ of his background report, either on appeal, in his district court filings, or in his many communications with [the background screening company].”  A copy of the opinion is available here.