In Robertson v. Allied Solutions, LLC, plaintiff Shameca Robertson brought a class action claim in the Southern District of Indiana against Allied Solutions under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. In the complaint, Robertson asserted two claims against Allied Solutions: (1) that the company failed to provide her with an FCRA-compliant disclosure informing her that it would obtain a background check; and (2) that it failed to follow a proper pre-adverse action process before revoking her employment based on her background check. The parties settled the lawsuit on a class action basis – or so it seemed – and moved the Court to preliminarily approve the settlement. That is when things got interesting.
After the parties filed their preliminary approval paperwork, the Court directed counsel to brief whether Robertson had constitutional standing to bring her claims in federal court. Specifically, the court questioned whether Robertson had suffered an injury-in-fact sufficient to confer standing in light of recent Seventh Circuit precedent in Groshek v. Great Lakes Higher Education Corp. After briefing – and despite the parties’ settlement – the Court concluded that Robertson had no standing.
The Court opined that Robertson failed to allege that the statutory FCRA violation “affected her in any way.” She did not allege that she did not understand her rights under the FCRA, despite the non-compliant disclosure. She also failed to allege that she had any information that would have changed Allied Solutions’ decision to revoke her employment had she been afforded the opportunity to dispute the results of her background check. According to the Court, “there is no allegation that there was any harm or appreciable risk of harm to the Plaintiff.”
The Court also declined to give Robertson leave to amend her complaint to show actual harm. The Court did so for two reasons. First, it was not aware of any authority permitting it to “hold a case open” once it determined that it did not have subject matter jurisdiction. Second, Robertson failed to proffer any facts that she could allege to show standing. As a result, the court dismissed the case without prejudice.