SD FL Spokeo Decision

Courts around the country continue to grapple with the Supreme Court’s Spokeo decision – particularly as nearly every Rule 12(b)(6) motion filed these days raises Article III standing as a basis for dismissal.

U.S. District Court Judge Cecilia M. Altonaga recently analyzed Spokeo in Flaum v. Doctor’s Associates, Inc., 2016 WL 7015823 (S.D. Fla. Aug. 29, 2016).  Plaintiff brought suit alleging a single claim under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (“FACTA”).

Undertaking a close look at the statute and its legislative history, Judge Altonaga concluded that Congress created a “substantive right” under FACTA for consumers to have their personal credit card information truncated on printed receipts:

Courts have … considered a FACTA violation to be concrete as soon as a company prints the offending receipt, as opposed to requiring a plaintiff actually suffer identity theft.

The FACTA’s legislative history supports the Court’s finding Congress desired to create a substantive legal right for consumers to utilize in protecting against identity theft. In particular, the “FACTA arose from a desire to prevent identity theft that can occur when card holders’ private financial information, such as a card holder’s complete credit card number, is exposed on electronically printed payment card receipts.” Creative Hosp. Ventures, Inc. v. U.S. Liab. Ins. Co., 655 F.Supp.2d 1316, 1333 (S.D. Fla. 2009), rev’d in part, 444 Fed.Appx. 370 (11th Cir. 2011).