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Credit Reporting Issues Resulting from the Coronavirus Emergency


Speaker(s): Leonard A. Bennett, Stephen J. Newman
Recorded on: May. 8, 2020
PLI Program #: 300239

Mr. Newman has experience in defending class actions and other representative litigation, as well as proceedings commenced by government officials on behalf of the general public. He has defended many cases under California’s Unfair Competition Law and Consumers Legal Remedies Act, representing a broad range of companies, including Internet-based businesses, retailers, banks, insurers and manufacturers.

Mr. Newman also has handled litigation involving a variety of other issues, including data security, consumer privacy, securities fraud, accountants’ malpractice, actuaries’ malpractice and insurance.

Representative Matters

  • Cel-Tech Communications, Inc. v. Los Angeles Cellular Tel. Co., 20 Cal. 4th 163 (1999) (counsel for amicus curiae Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce in Unfair Competition Law/Unfair Practices Act matter)
  • Batzel v. Smith, 333 F.3d 1018 (9th Cir. 2003) (establishing immunity for Internet publisher against defamation suit)
  • Wiz Technology, Inc. v. Coopers & Lybrand, 106 Cal. App. 4th 1 (2003) (affirming summary judgment in accountants’ liability case)
  • Discover Bank v. Superior Court, 134 Cal. App. 4th 886 (2005) (upholding class action waiver and compelling arbitration)
  • Baker v. Washington Mutual Finance Group, LLC, 193 Fed. Appx. 294 (5th Cir. July 24, 2006) (approval of complex class action settlement)
  • Berry v. American Express Publishing, Inc., 147 Cal. App. 4th 224 (2007) (establishing that Consumers Legal Remedies Act does not regulate credit agreements)
  • Sanchez v. American Express Travel Related Services Co., 865 N.E.2d 410 (Ill. App. Ct. 2007) (affirming summary judgment in case relating to foreign currency conversion practices)
  • Carvalho v. Equifax Info. Servs., LLC, 629 F.3d 876 (9th Cir. 2010) (affirming summary judgment in favor of credit bureau on claim challenging reinvestigation practices)
  • Epstein v. JPMorgan Chase & Co., 2014 WL 1133567 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 21, 2014) (dismissing class action relating to credit balances on credit card accounts)

Practice Group

Financial Services/Class Action Litigation

Education

J.D., with honors, University of Chicago, 1995; Member, The University of Chicago Law Review

A.B., magna cum laude in Economics, Harvard University, 1992; Member, The Harvard Crimson

Judicial Clerkship

Law Clerk, the late Hon. M. Blane Michael, U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit


Len Bennett has been a consumer advocate in consumer practice since 1996. He was selected as the 2017 Consumer Attorney of the Year by the National Association of Consumer Advocates. Bennett is on the Board of Directors of Public Justice and the Virginia Poverty Law Center (VPLC), and a member of the National Consumer Law Center’s Partner’s Council.  

Bennett has been a speaker at numerous programs, including NACA and NCLC conferences, ABA and state bar CLE seminars, NAVY and ARMY JAG instruction and law school courses. He has presented NACA’s “Fair Credit Reporting Act” Congressional Testimony and is a contributing author to the NCLC’s Fair Credit Reporting Manual.
 
Mr. Bennett has litigated over a thousand individual and class cases throughout the country, served as lead or co-lead counsel in obtaining 7 of the 10 largest FCRA class settlements in the statute’s history and the majority of its multi-million dollar outcomes, and successfully tried multiple significant FCRA cases to a jury. Mr. Bennett was selected for Best Lawyers in America, as a Law Dragon Top 500 Plaintiff’s Attorneys, a 2009 Virginia Leaders in the Law and a multi-year Virginia Super Lawyer.  

Mr. Bennett graduated from George Mason University School of Law and has practiced before the Third, Fourth, Sixth, Ninth and Eleventh Circuit United States Courts of Appeal and numerous federal District Courts.