Big business loves to kick a guy when he’s down. Take Wells Fargo, the bank that set up over 3 million fake accounts and forced over half a million of its customers to buy insurance they didn’t need. An infant could tell you this is illegal. So is what Wells Fargo did to a regular guy, Matt Sponer. Here’s the story.
Matt was minding his own business when someone decided it’d be pretty cool to steal his personal information, buy a BMW and finance it with a loan from Wells Fargo in Matt’s name. When the thief didn’t make any payments on the loan, Wells Fargo totally screwed up Matt’s credit by reporting the unpaid loan to the Big Three National credit reporting agencies.
As soon as Matt found out about what Wells Fargo had done to his credit, he got a lawyer who disputed the loan. Once Matt disputed the loan, federal law – The Fair Credit Reporting Act – required Wells Fargo to investigate the situation and clean up any damage it had done to Matt’s credit when it found out Matt was right. So, Wells Fargo hired a private detective to look into the situation and tell them if Matt was right. Here’s what the detective learned.
The detective confirmed that Matt’s identity had been stolen, the police had caught the thief, and a judge sentenced the guy for stealing Matt’s identity. The detective also confirmed that Matt wasn’t even in the country when the thief used Matt’s I.D. to borrow money from Wells Fargo. Case closed, Matt’s the innocent victim of identity theft, right? Wrong.
Incredibly, unbelievably, Wells Fargo told Matt that its investigation “has verified that the information being sent to the consumer credit reporting agencies on this account is accurate,’’ which was sort of the opposite of what Wells Fargo’s investigation really showed.
Wells Fargo kept up this charade, even after Matt kept pointing out how obviously wrong Wells Fargo was. Matt’s lawyer said “He tried over and over and over again, but he couldn’t make them listen, he couldn’t make them do the right thing.’’ What happened next was another win for the little guy.
Matt took Wells Fargo to federal court. He sued them under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. At the end of the trial, the jury said that Wells Fargo had intentionally and willfully violated Matt’s rights under the Act, and the folks on the jury awarded Matt $101,000.00 which shows that the little guy can and does beat big business.
If someone’s stolen your identity and now your credit’s screwed up, you need to speak with me about your rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Contact Sam Rael right away!