Duval County

Jacksonville woman has to make 2 car payments a month due to Equifax error, lawyer says

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Jacksonville woman has to make car payments twice a month due to credit score reporting errors made by Equifax earlier this year, according to one of the lawyers representing her.

John Yanchunis, a lawyer with Morgan & Morgan, said Nydia Jenkins noticed a 130-point difference in her credit score from the time she was prequalified for a loan to purchase a new car to the time she went to close the loan.

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“When she went to purchase the car in the spring of this year, she saw from her credit report that her credit score had dropped 130 points, and it affected her ability to get that loan,” Yanchunis said. “It went from a regular loan to what I would describe as a subprime loan, causing her to pay every two weeks at an additional cost of $150 per month, almost $2,000 a year.”

A lawsuit was filed on Jenkins’ behalf in federal court in Atlanta last week.

RELATED: Jacksonville woman’s lawsuit says Equifax error made loan pricier

An analysis Equifax conducted shows that there was no shift in a majority of credit scores, and for those who did experience a change, only a small number would have received a different credit decision, Equifax said to The Associated Press in an emailed statement on Thursday.

“While the score may have shifted, a score shift does not necessarily mean that a consumer’s credit decision was negatively impacted,” the Equifax statement said.

Equifax said in another statement that the problems stemmed from a coding issue that “resulted in the potential miscalculation of certain attributes used in model calculations.” In that statement, the firm said less than 300,000 consumers had a score shift of 25 points or more.

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“Again, we do not take this issue lightly,” Equifax said.

The errors occurred over three weeks from mid-March to early April. Yanchunis said other consumers should check their credit scores to see if they were affected.

“They should pull a credit report from Equifax today, and to the extent that they were involved in a credit transaction or request for a loan back in the period, they should go back to their lending institution or their creditor and ask for a copy of the Equifax report that that creditor was given and compare the two to figure out whether there was a change,” Yanchunis said.

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Yanchunis said even those who were not adversely affected, but saw their score take a dip during the affected time period, could be part of the suit. He said the Fair Credit Reporting Act provides for actual damages, which could range from $100 to $1,000 per violation.

“So we could get to a substantial sum of money even for people who were otherwise not impacted whatsoever but nevertheless in connection with the transaction were given a lower credit score because of the glitch,” Yanchunis said.

Those who believe their credit scores were impacted by the Equifax glitch can reach Yanchunis at jyanchunis@forthepeople.com or dial #LAW on their phone, which will direct them to a general number for the Morgan & Morgan law firm. The information will then be passed along to Yanchunis and his class action team.

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