Fair Isaac Corp. v. Trans Union, LLC, No. 17 C 8318, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Mar. 27, 2019) (Coleman, J.).

Judge Coleman granted in part defendant Trans Union’s Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss plaintiff FICO’s amended complaint and denied Trans Union’s Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(e) alternative motion for a more definite statement in this antitrust, Lanham Act unfair trade practices and related state law claims involving FICO’s credit score algorithms

Of particular note, the Court held as follows:

  • FICO’s breach of contract claims survived because they identified a purported contractual duty and that Trans Union alleged violated the duty or obligation. And the claims did not require a more definite statement because they put Trans Union on sufficient notice of the allegations.
  • The Court dismissed FICO’s good faith and fair dealing claim to the extent it was based upon Illinois law because Illinois did not recognize the cause of action.
  • FICO’s copyright claim was not preempted by the breach of contract claims. Contracts are private rights, while copyrights are public rights. Furthermore, the Court could find no case law holding that a breach of contract claim could preempt copyright claims, even where the alleged facts were similar.
  • Because FICO did not allege that it had a right to immediate possession of the software, FICO’s conversation claim could not survive.
  • FICO’s unjust enrichment claim was allowed as alternative to its breach of contract claim.
  • The Court dismissed FICO’s false advertising claims to the extent they were based upon statements about the relative quality of credit scores as unactionable “mere puffery.” But the claims were not otherwise preempted by earlier claims FICO brought against Experian as those claims differed in time and the specific statements in the advertising.