We have been closely following a lawsuit challenging a 2019 Nevada amendment that relates to the treatment of spousal credit history during the credit application process. Senate Bill 311, which went into effect on October 1, 2019, allows an applicant for credit with no credit history to request that the creditor treat the applicant’s credit history as identical to that of the applicant’s spouse during the marriage.
The lawsuit, filed the same day the amendment went into effect, was brought by the American Financial Services Association, the Nevada Credit Union League, and the Nevada Bankers Association, and named as defendants the Commissioner of the Financial Institutions Division of the Nevada Department of Business and Industry and the Nevada Attorney General. Since last reported on the case, the trade groups filed their first amended complaint on February 12. On March 24, the defendants filed a motion to dismiss the first amended complaint in which they make two primary arguments.
First, the defendants argue that the case is not ripe for adjudication, stating that the plaintiffs “do not allege facts supporting a well-founded fear of an enforcement action.” A similar argument was made in the defendants’ motion to dismiss the initial complaint. In support of this position, the defendants emphasize an apparent absence of concrete actions affecting the plaintiffs since Senate Bill 311 went into effect: “Months have gone by since the law became effective. Plaintiffs do not allege that they have received one request from a consumer under the law. Plaintiffs do not allege that they are the subject of any actual enforcement action or even the threat of one. Plaintiffs have not articulated actual hardships with specific facts.”
Second, the defendants restate an argument made in their earlier motion to dismiss that Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford is not a proper party to the suit, taking the position that the plaintiffs’ have not “point[ed] to factual allegations where General Ford has indicated he intends to bring any action under Section 3 against them or their members.”
We will continue to provide updates on this case as it progresses.