An Act To Update the Fair Credit Reporting Act Consistent with Federal Law
Sec. 1. 10 MRSA c. 209-B is enacted to read:
FAIR CREDIT REPORTING ACT
§ 1306. Short title
This chapter may be known and cited as "the Fair Credit Reporting Act."
§ 1307. Statement of purpose
§ 1308. Definitions
As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following meanings. Unless the context otherwise indicates, any word or phrase that is not defined in this chapter but that is defined in the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act has the meaning set forth in the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act.
§ 1309. Incorporation by reference of federal law and rulemaking
§ 1310. Additional requirements for persons subject to this chapter
In addition to the compliance requirements of section 1309, subsection 1, a person subject to this chapter shall comply with this section.
(1) A consumer who has been the victim of identity theft may place a security freeze on the consumer's consumer report by making a request in writing by certified mail to a consumer reporting agency with a valid copy of a police report, investigative report or complaint the consumer has filed with a law enforcement agency about unlawful use of personal information by another person. In the case of a victim of identity theft, a consumer reporting agency may not charge a fee for placing, removing or suspending for a specific party or period of time a security freeze on a consumer report.
(2) A consumer who has not been the victim of identity theft may place a security freeze on the consumer's consumer report by making a request in writing by certified mail to a consumer reporting agency. A consumer reporting agency may charge a fee of no more than $10 to a consumer for each security freeze, removal of a security freeze or temporary suspension of a security freeze for a period of time or for reissuing the same or a new personal identification number if the consumer fails to retain the original personal identification number provided by the agency under paragraph D. A consumer reporting agency may charge a fee of not more than $12 for a temporary suspension of a security freeze for a specific party.
(1) Release the consumer report or any information from it without the express authorization of the consumer; or
(2) Release information from a consumer report to a 3rd party without express authorization of the consumer. This subparagraph does not prevent a consumer reporting agency from advising a 3rd party that a security freeze is in effect with respect to the consumer report.
(1) Proper identification;
(2) The personal identification number or password provided by the consumer reporting agency pursuant to paragraph D; and
(3) The proper information regarding the specific party granted access or the time period for which the consumer report is to be available to users.
(1) Upon consumer request pursuant to paragraph E or K; or
(2) If the security freeze was due to a material misrepresentation of fact by the consumer. If a consumer reporting agency intends to remove a security freeze from a consumer report pursuant to this subparagraph, the consumer reporting agency shall notify the consumer in writing prior to removing the security freeze.
(1) Proper identification; and
(2) The personal identification number or password provided by the consumer reporting agency pursuant to paragraph D.
(1) A person or person's subsidiary, affiliate, agent or assignee with which the consumer has or, prior to assignment, had an account, contract or debtor-creditor relationship for the purposes of reviewing the account or collecting the financial obligation owing for the account, contract or debt or extending credit to a consumer with a prior or existing account, contract or debtor-creditor relationship, subject to the requirements of 15 United States Code, Section 1681b. For purposes of this subparagraph, "reviewing the account" includes activities related to account maintenance, monitoring, credit line increases and account upgrades and enhancements;
(2) A subsidiary, affiliate, agent, assignee or prospective assignee of a person to whom access has been granted under paragraph E for purposes of facilitating the extension of credit or another permissible use;
(3) A person acting pursuant to a court order, warrant or subpoena;
(4) Child support enforcement officials when investigating a child support case pursuant to Title 19-A or the federal Social Security Act, Title IV-D;
(5) The Department of Health and Human Services or its agents or assignees acting to investigate Medicaid fraud;
(6) The Department of Administrative and Financial Services, Maine Revenue Services; municipal taxing authorities; the Secretary of State, Bureau of Motor Vehicles; or any of their agents or assignees, acting to investigate or collect delinquent taxes or assessments, including interest and penalties and unpaid court orders, or to fulfill any of their other statutory or charter responsibilities;
(7) A person's use of credit information for prescreening as provided by the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act or this chapter;
(8) A person for the sole purpose of providing a credit file monitoring subscription service to which the consumer has subscribed;
(9) A consumer reporting agency for the sole purpose of providing a consumer with a copy of that consumer's report upon the consumer's request; and
(10) The administrator pursuant to section 1310-A.
(1) Acts only to resell credit information by assembling and merging information contained in a database of one or more consumer reporting agencies; and
(2) Does not maintain a permanent database of credit information from which new consumer reports are produced.
Nothing in this section prevents the department from voluntarily providing information to a consumer reporting agency regarding any individual who is indebted to the department for failure to pay child support.
(1) Fail to state in the initial phase of the solicitation from a lender or loan broker that the solicitor is not affiliated with the lender or loan broker with which the consumer initially applied;
(2) Fail in the initial solicitation to conform to state and federal law relating to prescreened solicitations using consumer reports, including the requirement to make a firm offer of credit to the consumer;
(3) Knowingly or negligently use information regarding consumers who have opted out of prescreened offers of credit or who have placed their contact information on the most current federal do-not-call registry; or
(4) Solicit a consumer with offers of certain rates, terms and costs with intent to subsequently raise the rates or change the terms to the consumer's detriment.
§ 1310-A. Administrative enforcement
If the defendant establishes by a preponderance of evidence that repeated violations were the result of a bona fide error notwithstanding the maintenance of procedures reasonably adapted to avoid any such violation or error, a penalty may not be imposed under this subsection.
§ 1310-B. Criminal violations
§ 1310-C. Civil liability for willful noncompliance
A consumer reporting agency or user of information that willfully and knowingly fails to comply with a requirement imposed under this chapter with respect to a consumer is liable to that consumer for and the court may award an amount equal to the sum of:
§ 1310-D. Civil liability for negligent noncompliance
A consumer reporting agency or user of information that is negligent in failing to comply with a requirement imposed under this chapter with respect to a consumer is liable to that consumer in an amount equal to the sum of:
§ 1310-E. Jurisdiction of courts; limitation of actions
An action to enforce liability created under this chapter may be brought in any court of competent jurisdiction within 2 years from the date on which the liability arises, except that when a defendant has materially and willfully misrepresented any information required under this chapter to be disclosed to an individual and the information so misrepresented is material to the establishment of the defendant's liability to that individual under this chapter, the action may be brought at any time within 2 years after the discovery by the individual of the misrepresentation.
§ 1310-F. Relation to other laws and the powers of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions
This chapter does not limit the obligations of a supervised financial organization to comply with other state and federal laws to which the supervised financial organization is subject, or the authority of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions conferred by Title 9-B, including the authority to examine and supervise a supervised financial organization to ensure compliance with state and federal laws and regulations as set forth in Title 9-B, section 211, subsection 3.
§ 1310-G. Enforcement powers in addition to those in federal law
The enforcement powers of the administrator under this chapter are in addition to the State's enforcement powers authorized under federal law.
§ 1310-H. Additional state-specific provisions
Sec. 2. 10 MRSA c. 210, as amended, is repealed.
Sec. 3. Revisor's review; cross-references. The Revisor of Statutes shall review the Maine Revised Statutes and include in the errors and inconsistencies bill submitted to the Second Regular Session of the 126th Legislature pursuant to Title 1, section 94 any sections necessary to correct and update any cross-references in the statutes to provisions of law repealed in this Act.
This bill incorporates federal fair credit reporting laws into state law while preserving enhanced protections found in current state law.