United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Charlotte Division
J. CONRAD, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the Court on Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for
Failure to State a Claim, (Doc. No. 7), and the parties'
associated briefs, (Doc. Nos. 8-9); the Magistrate
Judge's Memorandum and Recommendation
(“M&R”), (Doc. No. 10); Plaintiff's
Objection to the M&R, (Doc. No. 11); and Defendants'
Response to Plaintiff's Objection, (Doc. No. 12).
party has objected to the Magistrate Judge's statement of
the factual and procedural background of this case.
Therefore, the Court adopts the facts as set forth in the
STANDARD OF REVIEW
district court may assign dispositive pretrial matters,
including motions to dismiss, to a magistrate judge for
“proposed findings of fact and recommendations.”
28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A) and (B). The Federal Magistrate
Act provides that “a district court shall make a de
novo determination of those portions of the report or
specific proposed findings or recommendations to which
objection is made.” Id. at §
636(b)(1)(C); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(3); Camby v. Davis,
718 F.2d 198, 200 (4th Cir. 1983).
Rule 72(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a
district court judge shall make a de novo determination of
any portion of an M&R to which specific written objection
has been made. In the M&R, the Magistrate Judge
recommended that Defendants' Motion to Dismiss, (Doc. No.
7), be granted in part and denied in part. Specifically, the
M&R recommended dismissing Plaintiff's state-law
claims of violations of the North Carolina Unfair and
Deceptive Trade Practices Act (“UDTPA”), N.C.
Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1 et seq., and civil
conspiracy, but allowing Plaintiff's Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act (“FDCPA”), 15 U.S.C. § 1692
et seq., claim against Defendant Diversified
Consultants, Inc. to proceed.
makes specific objection to the portion of the M&R that
recommends dismissing Plaintiff's state-law claims as
preempted by the FCRA. Plaintiff contends that FCRA
preemption does not bar Plaintiff's North Carolina UDTPA
and civil conspiracy claims because the Amended Complaint
alleges Defendants engaged in unfair and deceptive conduct
subsequent to Defendants' failure to accurately report or
correct information on Plaintiff's credit report-conduct
regulated by the FCRA.
FCRA is a comprehensive statutory scheme designed to regulate
the consumer reporting industry.” Ross v.
F.D.I.C., 625 F.3d 808, 812 (4th Cir. 2010) (citing 15
U.S.C. § 1681(a)). It was enacted “to ensure fair
and accurate credit reporting, promote efficiency in the
banking system, and protect consumer privacy.”
Safeco Ins. Co. of Am. v. Burr, 551 U.S. 47, 52
(2007). Congress intended the FCRA to serve as a
“comprehensive series of restrictions on the disclosure
and use of credit information assembled by consumer reporting
agencies.” Ross, 625 F.3d at 812 (quoting
FTC v. Manager, Retail Credit Co., 515 F.2d 988, 989
(D.C. Cir. 1975)). Because it is designed to serve as a
comprehensive legislative framework, Congress added a
“strong preemption provision, 15 U.S.C. §
1681(t)(b), . . . to avoid a ‘patchwork system of
conflicting regulations.'” Id. (citing
Michael Epshteyn, Note, The Fair and Accurate Credit
Transactions Act of 2003: Will Preemption of State Credit
Reporting Laws Harm Consumers?, 93 Geo. L.J. 1143, 1154
FCRA provides that
No requirement or prohibition may be imposed under the laws
of any State . . . with respect to any subject matter
regulated under . . . section 1681s-2 of this title [FCRA
§ 623], relating to the responsibilities of persons who
furnish information to consumer reporting agencies . . . .
15 U.S.C. § 1681t(b)(1)(F). Accordingly, FCRA preempts
state-law claims that arise from an alleged failure to
accurately report or correct information on a consumer's
credit report. See 15 U.S.C. § 1681t(b)(1)(F);
Ross, 625 F.3d at 813. Any state-law claims
involving allegations relating “to the responsibilities
of persons who furnish information under section 1681s-2,
” are preempted by ...