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McCray v. Equifax Consumer Services, LLC

United States District Court, D. Maryland

September 27, 2018

TYRONE MCCRAY, Plaintiff,
v.
EQUIFAX CONSUMER SERVICES, LLC, and EXPERIAN INFORMATION SOLUTIONS, INC., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          Richard D. Bennett United States District Judge

         On April 6, 2018, Plaintiff Tyrone McCray, proceeding pro se, filed this action against Defendants Equifax Consumer Services, LLC (“Equifax”) and Experian Information Solutions, Inc. (“Experian”) (collectively, “Defendants”), seeking $5, 000 for violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq. (“FDCPA”), and the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq. (“FCRA”).[1] (ECF No. 2.) Currently pending before this Court is Defendant Equifax's Motion to Dismiss. (ECF No. 9.) The parties' submissions have been reviewed, and no hearing is necessary. See Local Rule 105.6 (D. Md. 2016). For the reasons stated below, Defendant Equifax's Motion to Dismiss (ECF No. 9) is GRANTED, and Plaintiff's claims are DISMISSED against Equifax.

         As to Defendant Experian, the Plaintiff never effectuated service of process on Experian despite filing his Complaint over five months ago. Further, the same grounds for dismissal that apply to Plaintiff's claims against Equifax also apply to Plaintiff's claims against Experian, which is also a consumer credit reporting agency. Therefore, for the reasons explained below, Plaintiff's claims are also DISMISSED against Experian.

         BACKGROUND

         In ruling on a motion to dismiss, this Court “accept[s] as true all well-pleaded facts in a complaint and construe[s] them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff.” Wikimedia Found. v. Nat'l Sec. Agency, 857 F.3d 193, 208 (4th Cir. 2017) (citing SD3, LLC v. Black & Decker (U.S.) Inc., 801 F.3d 412, 422 (4th Cir. 2015)). Further, as a pro se Plaintiff, this Court has “liberally construe[ed]” the pleadings. Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); Alley v. Yadkin County Sheriff Dept., No. 17-1249, 698 Fed.Appx. 141 (4th Cir. Oct. 5, 2017).

         On March 1, 2018, Plaintiff Tyrone McCray filed a Complaint against Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union seeking $5, 000 for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), and the Fair Debt Collection Practice Act (“FDCPA”), in the District Court for Baltimore City, Maryland. (ECF No. 2.) The full Complaint reads:

Violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act-including [b]ut not limited to Section 611. Violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (including but not limited to Section 807-8)[.] Violations of the Fair Credit Reports Act (including but not limited to Section 623-a-3)[.] Plus missing information of inquiry [r]emoval returned mail. [sic]

(ECF No. 2.) On April 6, 2018, Defendant Equifax removed the case to this Court based on federal question jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331 (ECF Nos. 1, 5.)

         On April 13, 2018, Defendant Equifax filed the now-pending Motion to Dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim. Id. Plaintiff McCray filed a Response to the Motion to Dismiss on May 1, 2018, and Equifax filed a Reply in Support of its Motion to Dismiss on May 15, 2018. (ECF No. 11.)

         STANDARD OF REVIEW

         Under Rule 8(a)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a complaint must contain a “short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure authorizes the dismissal of a complaint if it fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). The purpose of Rule 12(b)(6) is “to test the sufficiency of a complaint and not to resolve contests surrounding the facts, the merits of a claim, or the applicability of defenses.” Presley v. City of Charlottesville, 464 F.3d 480, 483 (4th Cir. 2006). While a complaint need not include “detailed factual allegations, ” it must set forth “enough factual matter (taken as true) to suggest” a cognizable cause of action. Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-56 (2007); Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).

         In reviewing a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, a court “‘must accept as true all of the factual allegations contained in the complaint'” and must “‘draw all reasonable inferences [from those facts] in favor of the plaintiff.'” E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. v. Kolon Indus., Inc., 637 F.3d 435, 440 (4th Cir. 2011) (citations omitted); Hall v. DirectTV, LLC, 846 F.3d 757, 765 (4th Cir. 2017). However, a court is not required to accept legal conclusions drawn from those facts. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. A pro se plaintiff's pleadings are “to be liberally construed” and are “held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); Alley v. Yadkin County Sheriff Dept., No. 17-1249, __ Fed App'x __, 2017 WL 4415771 (4th Cir. Oct. 5, 2017). However, even a pro se litigant's complaint must be dismissed if it does not allege a “plausible claim for relief.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679.

         ANALYSIS

         The entirety of Plaintiff McCray's ...


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