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Millions Of Americans Likely Paying Higher Interest Rates Because Equifax Sent Wrong Credit Scores To Lenders

Millions Of Americans Likely Paying Higher Interest Rates Because Equifax Sent Wrong Credit Scores To Lenders

equifax

Photo: This July 21, 2012, file photo shows signage at the corporate headquarters of Equifax Inc. in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Mike Stewart, File)

Millions of consumers have been affected by a major blunder by consumer credit reporting agency Equifax. The firm sent lenders inaccurate credit scores of consumers for three weeks this year. 

And now, a class action complaint has been filed against Equifax on behalf of Nydia Jenkins and other consumers who sought loans or other financial services were denied because of the erroneous report given to the lender. The lawsuit is seeking an undisclosed amount of damages “to the fullest extent allowable by law,” the lawsuit is asking for an audit to identify which customers’ credit scores were affected, NY1.com reported.

The lawsuit is seeking class-action status. Lawyers for Jenkins allege that Equifax’s error resulted in her being stuck with a more expensive car loan.

The inaccurate scores were sent from mid-March through early April, according to the lawsuit. Equifax didn’t disclose the error until May after trade publication National Mortgage Professional reported on the glitch. The issue affected million. Equifax maintains credit reports on more than 200 million U.S. consumers and sells them to lenders.

Equifax sent the incorrect scores on people applying for auto loans, mortgages, and credit cards to banks and nonbank lenders of all sizes, such as JPMorgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co., and Ally Financial Inc. Some of the scores were off by 20 points or more in either direction. Some of these incorrect scores resulted in higher interest rates and denied applications, The Wall Street Journal reported.


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According to Equifax, it has since fixed the error. The company described the glitch as a “technology coding issue.”

“We have determined that there was no shift in the vast majority of scores during the three-week timeframe of the issue,” Sid Singh, president of Equifax’s U.S. Information Solutions, said in a statement. “For those consumers that did experience a score shift, initial analysis indicates that only a small number of them may have received a different credit decision.”

If you applied for a loan, credit card, or other financial products between March 17 and April 6, You could have been affected by the Equifax glitch.

“If you haven’t been monitoring your credit score and your credit report regularly, how would you know?” Bruce McClary, senior vice president of membership and communications at the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, told CBS News.

I added, “If you went to a lender and were rejected … that might be a clue that you were possibly a victim.”

Photo: This July 21, 2012, file photo shows signage at the corporate headquarters of Equifax Inc. in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Mike Stewart, File)