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Unauthorized Credit Pull


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Local car dealer, we paid a deposit on a car and they pulled our credit.  Husband didn't fill out a thing, I've never even stepped foot at this place.

I didn't get notification right away in order to get on this.  Once I did, the finance dept would not call us back.  Sales guy on 1/7 said since it was past 30 days they couldn't do anything (I think this was Nov when I got covid) and to get with the bureaus.

I already filed a dispute with EQ.  They closed it the same night and said get with dealer.  Which I had already tried.

Now dealer won't budge and bureaus either.  What recourse do I have here or what are the best next steps?

 

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A signature is not required for a car dealer to pull your credit. Paying a deposit and showing intent is all that is needed. All they need is a legitimate business need. 

Your husband initiated the transaction by paying the deposit.

You who never visited the dealership may have recourse unless you got on the phone with them and expressed an intent to buy ANY car.

 

The only time a signature is REQUIRED is for employment purposes. 

 

15 U.S. Code § 1681b (F)(i) 

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/15/1681b

 

 

Edited by pandmel
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1 hour ago, MarvBear said:

How did the dealer get the social security numbers that would have been used?


A social security number is not required for a car dealer to pull your credit.

If they have your correct name address and DOB they can get your report. 

Social security help make a perfect match but it is not required.

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A signature is not required for a car dealer to pull your credit. Paying a deposit and showing intent is all that is needed. All they need is a legitimate business need. 

Your husband initiated the transaction by paying the deposit.

You who never visited the dealership may have recourse unless you got on the phone with them and expressed an intent to buy ANY car.
 
The only time a signature is REQUIRED is for employment purposes. 
 

15 U.S. Code § 1681b (F)(i) 

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/15/1681b

 
 

You make it sound like they do not need permissible purpose and that is completely false.

Just going in and talking about buying a car never -- yes, never -- gives them permissible purpose to pull your credit reports. You have to enter into an application for credit or sign an agreement.

Absent an agreement or application for credit, you should sue them and get, IIRC, $1,500 for statutory damages. It's extremely easy -- BTDT.


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5 hours ago, pandmel said:


A social security number is not required for a car dealer to pull your credit.

If they have your correct name address and DOB they can get your report. 

Social security help make a perfect match but it is not required.

Later I will have comments

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6 hours ago, PotO said:


You make it sound like they do not need permissible purpose and that is completely false.

Just going in and talking about buying a car never -- yes, never -- gives them permissible purpose to pull your credit reports. You have to enter into an application for credit or sign an agreement.

Absent an agreement or application for credit, you should sue them and get, IIRC, $1,500 for statutory damages. It's extremely easy -- BTDT.
 



Reading is fundamental.

Paying a deposit on a car gives permissible purpose.  Nowhere in the FCRA does it say a signed application is required.

We do not know the full story from the OP and their relationship with the dealer ie: a prior business relationship.

They got the op's information from somewhere. Did the husband or the OP pay the deposit? You do not have to

visit a showroom to pay a deposit. That can be done over the phone. 

Absent a whole lot more information its hard to give real advice. 

Jumping up and down saying sue sue sue is a knee jerk reaction and does not serve the OP or others that may see this 

thread in the future.


I have cashed checks for soft inquiries from companies I had no business relationship with. Hell they might pay rather

than fight it as a business decision.

 

(3)To a person which it has reason to believe—

(A)intends to use the information in connection with a credit transaction involving the consumer on whom the information is to be furnished and involving the extension of credit to, or review or collection of an account of, the consumer; or

(F)otherwise has a legitimate business need for the information—

(i) in connection with a business transaction that is initiated by the consumer; or
 
Edited by pandmel
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Reading is fundamental.

Paying a deposit on a car gives permissible purpose.  Nowhere in the FCRA does it say a signed application is required.

We do not know the full story from the OP and their relationship with the dealer ie: a prior business relationship.
They got the op's information from somewhere. Did the husband or the OP pay the deposit? You do not have to
visit a showroom to pay a deposit. That can be done over the phone. 

Absent a whole lot more information its hard to give real advice. 

Jumping up and down saying sue sue sue is a knee jerk reaction and does not serve the OP or others that may see this 
thread in the future.

I have cashed checks for soft inquiries from companies I had no business relationship with. Hell they might pay rather
than fight it as a business decision.
 
(3)To a person which it has reason to believe—(A)intends to use the information in connection with a credit transaction involving the consumer on whom the information is to be furnished and involving the extension of credit to, or review or collection of an account of, the consumer; or(F)otherwise has a legitimate business need for the information—(i) in connection with a business transaction that is initiated by the consumer; or

 



No, Jethro, it does not.

With that brain-dead logic, Walmart can run a credit check when you put your port-a-potty on layaway.

I actually have sued a car dealer and won. Unless you have given them permission, they do not have permissible purpose.

Some common scenarios where they do is when you have a purchase agreement and tender payment by check. They may decide to run your credit if they decide to let you take the car before the check clears. That, by the way, is spelled out in the purchase agreement.


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23 minutes ago, PotO said:

 


No, Jethro, it does not.

With that brain-dead logic, Walmart can run a credit check when you put your port-a-potty on layaway.

I actually have sued a car dealer and won. Unless you have given them permission, they do not have permissible purpose.

Some common scenarios where they do is when you have a purchase agreement and tender payment by check. They may decide to run your credit if they decide to let you take the car before the check clears. That, by the way, is spelled out in the purchase agreement.


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Oh you misinformed celestial being.

 

Once again READING IS FUNDAMENTAL.

 

Paying a deposit on a car gives them permissible purpose especially if you discuss financing options,

the OPS description of what happened is not clear,(I would lay 10-1 financing was discussed.)

 

You give permission at that point.

 

The OP may have a case but her husband is out. Once again we do not know the full story.

 

Go read the code obviously you are not intelligent enough to understand the snippets I posted go read it in full context. 

 

Make sure you slow down and read it line by line. Let me know when you find that an application or signature is necessary

if it falls in the permissible purpose categories.  Here's a clue for you, the only time a signature is required is for employment.

 

READING IS FUNDAMENTAL. 

 

AN APPLICATION is NOT REQUIRED. You gave them permissible purpose the moment you paid a deposit and said I need credit.
 

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Oh you misinformed celestial being.
 
Once again READING IS FUNDAMENTAL.
 
Paying a deposit on a car gives them permissible purpose especially if you discuss financing options,
the OPS description of what happened is not clear,(I would lay 10-1 financing was discussed.)
 
You give permission at that point.
 
The OP may have a case but her husband is out. Once again we do not know the full story.
 
Go read the code obviously you are not intelligent enough to understand the snippets I posted go read it in full context. 
 
Make sure you slow down and read it line by line. Let me know when you find that an application or signature is necessary
if it falls in the permissible purpose categories.  Here's a clue for you, the only time a signature is required is for employment.
 
READING IS FUNDAMENTAL. 
 
AN APPLICATION is NOT REQUIRED. You gave them permissible purpose the moment you paid a deposit and said I need credit.
 


Jethro, Granny is going to clobber you for those continual lies.

Simply giving them a deposit means nothing. Did they run your credit when you gave the elementary school a deposit on your third grade reading classes last week? If they did, go look for Mike Agruss and he can get you a couple grand.

If, however, they did more than simply give a deposit such as, for example, ask for financing or sign an agreement where they customarily hide permissible purpose to run credit, then no problem.

Many car dealers, however, as soon as you mention financing they take it upon themselves to do you a "favor" of running your credit thinking that #1 you are stupid and don't care about 10 inquiries and #2 will be thrilled at their often crappy APR.

You see, Jethro, there are three large car dealers right outside Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, California, that were put out of business for doing precisely that. A fairly large number of individuals would go in, agree to buy a car, place their deposit and then tell the dealer they will be back in a day or two with their money from Navy Federal Credit Union because they had pre-approved financing. The dealers still pulled their credit thinking they could either surprise the buyer with a lower rate or somehow convince them that the dealer's much higher rate was to their advantage.

Come to find out, Jethro, they did not have permissible purpose and the not only were they put out of business, but the lawsuits bankrupted them.

Overcome those memory retention problems, Jethro, and go back and read. Just giving a dealer a deposit all by itself does not give them permissible purpose to pull your credit. There has to be more than that.


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AN APPLICATION is NOT REQUIRED. You gave them permissible purpose the moment you paid a deposit and said I need credit.
 

Nice, Jethro.

Now you go from just paying a deposit to paying a deposit and and saying you need credit. There is hope for you yet.

When you went into Walmart and put your truckload of adult diapers on lay-a-way, did they run your credit?


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16 hours ago, hegemony said:

Did you jointly buy a vehicle? Was it financed?

 

Is your name on the loan and.or title?

 

I will not be on the car.  Originally they said we needed to finance with them, but we already had financing in place.  That was before this meeting of a deposit being paid.

 My husband gave him our ID info over the phone. 

A little more details from husbands.  there was a car the sales rep thought was ours, called, trying to get our info bc at this point still nothing was signed.  He took our ID info over the phone for "preapproval" then we were sent a photo and told him that wasn't what we ordered.  He fixed that, but I guess in the mean time finance pulled credit still... 

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We told this guy over and over not to run our stuff.  I guess once we thought this car was ours and he said we HAD to use GM, husband said ok well this is a rock and hard place...but then within 10min we knew it wasn't the right car, our credit was still ran.  

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I'll keep my advice simple:   If you're car shopping and a dealer pulls your credit without your EXPLICIT permission (such as after having handed them your DL prior to taking a test drive), thank them for the gesture since it singles out the dealership as one you don't want to do business with.

 

Seriously, they've taken an underhanded move in order to ascertain how strong of a prospect you might be (quality and quantity of available credit).  No reputable dealer engages in that crap.  Move on.  They might have a car you want; but you've inviting more crap if you pursue a transaction with them (like junk prep fees).

 

And as far as the inquiry?  A single inquiry to your credit file is relatively insignificant (even more so if you intend to ultimately finance a purchase within the next couple of weeks).  Don't sweat it for more than a second.

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17 hours ago, MarvBear said:

Later I will have comments

Long time ago, prior to everything automotive was web based, I did not need a consumer social security number to pull their credit.   Long as I had their correct name and address and birthdate, I'd just put 999 99 9999 in the Social Security fields, if I was in too much of a hurry for the salesperson to bring me a completed  customer statement.   For these last many years, that ability has been deprecated from any DMS I know, or any web access.  So quite simply its been a fair number of years since I had to have the social to pull credit.

So that being said,   How did that dealer get the social security numbers from the poster?   We do not know that whole story yet, IMO

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18 minutes ago, MarvBear said:

Long time ago, prior to everything automotive was web based, I did not need a consumer social security number to pull their credit.   Long as I had their correct name and address and birthdate, I'd just put 999 99 9999 in the Social Security fields, if I was in too much of a hurry for the salesperson to bring me a completed  customer statement.   For these last many years, that ability has been deprecated from any DMS I know, or any web access.  So quite simply its been a fair number of years since I had to have the social to pull credit.

So that being said,   How did that dealer get the social security numbers from the poster?   We do not know that whole story yet, IMO


I have pulled hundred if not thousands of reports doing that exact thing. 15 years car business and 10 years RV business.  Instead I used 111-11-1111.

 

Recent vehicle purchase I just did was for my mother. Due to titling / tag issues I had to put her on the loan, We live in different states.

I do not have moms social and this was her Christmas present. We were able to add her to the loan without having her social using the above stated trick.

This was done at a dealership I worked at 14 years ago and the GM is a personal friend.

It still works for any dealer using DealerTrack, Credco or Equifax online portal to pull credit. It will return a social mismatch and give the dealer the correct social. It has to be done outside of their normal process.
 

I am not real sure that many dealers use their DMS to pull credit anymore with DealerTrack being the standard to submit deals to banks. It is more of a CRM / submission solution function. Credit application is submitted in CRM and pushed over to submission portal.  

 

I have been out of the space since 2018 and my last gig in automotive was a project with the leading dealer CRM solution.

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Did this thread really sideline itself into a debate on whether a report can be pulled without a SSN?  That's up for about as much debate as asking whether some guys bed women without calling after ...

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tempest meet teapot... inquiries don't matter. I hope the OP enjoys her new ride!


True, they seldom really matter.

That said, anybody pulls my credit without PP and they certainly will get FITA. And that includes soft inquiries. I've had various clowns place both soft and hard inquiries on my credit reports without PP and ultimately they ended up contributing to my retirement fund.

I believe it was @mrjuggalo9er who recommended a certain attorney here a while back and I have had excellent experience with him.


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49 minutes ago, NAC said:

any idea on getting them removed? I hate how they're treating this...no one had my permission and I want them gone.

it sounds like your co-applicant is to blame. BTW, how long ago did this occur?

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3 hours ago, NAC said:

any idea on getting them removed? I hate how they're treating this...no one had my permission and I want them gone.

 

I understand your frustration with the inquiry.  I encountered the same when test driving a car in 2006 and the experience left a very sour taste.

 

But let me play devil's advocate here:  "Permissible Purpose" for a pull merely requires the dealer to assert a reasonable need for information in your report.  It doesn't require specific consent on your part.  Just that you've entered into a transaction for which the dealer deems the report is valuable information in conducting business with you.

 

You cite that you put a deposit down on a vehicle.  The dealer may assert that to set aside a vehicle in good faith they wanted assurance that you don't have a habit of reneging on business transactions and viewed your credit report as providing such assurance.

 

Here's the governing FCRA language:

 

Quote

Permissible purpose is defined in Section 604 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). [15 U.S.C. § 1681b]

  1. In general. Subject to subsection (c), any consumer reporting agency may furnish a consumer report under the following circumstances and no other:

          . . .

          F.  otherwise has a legitimate business need for the information:

  1.      in connection with a business transaction that is initiated by the consumer

 

Consumer consent to having such a report pulled (even in the context of a credit application) is not discussed in the FCRA (except where it comes to a report provided to a consumer themself that is to be sent by mail).

 

Permissible purpose is the sole threshold that must be net.  I'm not saying that there isn't room to dispute such permissible purpose exists within your deposit transaction.  However, my guess is that you'd need to retain someone with considerable motivation to fight on your behalf (maybe @PotO might offer himself at a reasonable fee).

 

Your call here.  In my personal life, I put up with much greater nuisances without engaging them, deeming such potential  fight to be of greater bother.

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