In a 6-2 decision issued on Monday, May 16, the United States Supreme Court vacated and remanded Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins for re-argument in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Thomas Robins filed a suit under the Fair Credit Reporting Act against Spokeo, a company that operates a “people search engine,” for publishing incorrect information about him, information that he claimed harmed his employment prospects by falsely making him appear overqualified for the types of employment he was seeking at the time. The Supreme Court rejected the Ninth Circuit’s analysis finding that Mr. Robins had standing to sue, and instructed the Ninth Circuit to consider the question again. Spokeo raises big questions about big data, class action litigation, and the legitimacy of certain statutorily authorized private rights of action. Our expert offered his analysis of the opinion, the case’s prospects going forward, and its potential broader impact on the law.
- Hon. Alan C. Raul, Partner, Sidley Austin LLP