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Thursday, June 20, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Credit Union Blabs Woman’s Financial Woes

GREGORY, S.D. (CN) — A South Dakota woman claims in court that her entire community knows about her financial troubles because a credit union gave copies of her credit report to a class of 26 high school students.

Plaintiff Terri McFayden says she contacted the Consumer's Federal Credit Union to see if she and her husband could take out a small loan to cover her two young children's medical bills.

After reviewing her credit, the company's CEO and President, Sara Zimbelman, told McFayden she did not qualify for a loan, McFayden claims.

Just two days after Zembelman turned McFayden down for a loan, she shared her credit report with a class of 26 high school students, according to the complaint, which was filed Thursday in federal court.

Although the credit report was "partially redacted," McFayden's name, address, partial Social Security number and a "substantial amount of credit information" was still visible on the report, McFayden says.

After handing out the copies, Zembelman allegedly made "derogatory remarks" about McFayden's credit history.

McFayden claims she has experienced "extreme emotional distress as a result of the widespread knowledge throughout her community regarding her private information and financial struggles."

She is suing for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act and intentional infliction of emotional distress. She also seeks punitive damages.

McFayden is represented by Sharla Svennes of Myers Billion LLP in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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