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Amazon Hit with Second Background Check FCRA Class Action Lawsuit

Posted by Bob Mather on October 27, 2015

As with many employers, Amazon ( the online retailer) was hit with  a second FCRA class action lawsuit. 

Accordiing to topclassactions.com,a class action lawsuit filed by Plaintiff Theo Feldstein alleges he was initially offered a job working for Amazon but the offer was withdrawn after the company received a negative background check conducted as part of the employment process.

amazon-logo-black-square-e1440610992440Feldstein alleges that Amazon violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act when they did not warn him about the negative report and when they neglected to allow him to fix any potential errors on the record. The Amazon class action lawsuit was filed Tuesday in New Jersey federal court.

The FCRA class action lawsuit alleges that Amazon offered him a position with the company and withdrew 

the offer after receiving a negative background check from a third-party companySimilar employers have faced similar FCRA class action claims in the past. Including, but not limited to: Universal Studios, Disney Studios.

Feldstein says that he applied for a job with Amazon in April and following a successful interview, he accepted a contingent offer of employment for the position. The next month, the company reportedly contacted him to let him know they were in the process of reviewing the background check.

According to the FCRA class action lawsuit, Amazon halted the application process but never contacted him to give him an opportunity to correct any errors, nor did they provide him with a copy of the report. Feldstein says he happened to find out when he logged in to the application portal online at Amazon that a report had been received by the company from Accurate Background Inc. The background check listed criminal convictions on his report that he says were in error.

Amazon reportedly emailed Feldstein back at the end of May, letting him know that the background report came back and contained negative information. However, Feldstein claims he never received the report from Amazon and did not receive information of his rights under FCRA.

The Amazon class action lawsuit states, “Under the FCRA, any ‘person’ using a consumer report, such as Amazon, who intends to take an ‘adverse action’ on a job application ‘based in whole or in part’ on information obtained from the consumer report must provide notice of that fact to the consumer applicant, and must include with the notice a copy of the consumer report and a notice of the consumer’s dispute rights under the FCRA, before taking the adverse action.”

Feldstein did end up disputing the negative items on his background report directly with Accurate Background, according to the Amazon background check class action lawsuit. After receiving confirmation that his information was corrected, he notified Amazon but was told his application already expired.

AP_amazon_kab_140425_16x9_608The Amazon class action lawsuit explains that the purpose of enacting FCRA was to notify potential employees before taking action against them, and to allow them to review and dispute any inaccuracies, or to discuss the content of the report with the employer.

Feldstein seeks to represent a Class of employees or applicants at Amazon who had a background check conducted and who did not receive a copy or did not receive an email saying the report was confidential. The Class would include those who met the aforementioned criteria within two to five years prior to when the FCRA class action lawsuit was filed.

In April of this year, Amazon was hit with a similar FCRA class action lawsuit. The plaintiff in the earlier Amazon class action lawsuit alleged that he lost out on a job opportunity when his background check came back stating he had a felony conviction for cocaine possession. The plaintiff claimed he was not given the results of the background check and was not given time to correct it. The case is currently being reviewed in an Illinois federal court.

Feldstein is represented by James A. Francis and John Soumilas of Francis & Mailman PC.

The Amazon Background Check Class Action Lawsuit is Theo Feldstein v. Amazon.com LLC, et al., Case No. 3:15-cv-07322, in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.

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Topics: FCRA, class action lawsuit

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