A problem that harms millions of Americans directly is the number of errors in credit reports. One out of every five consumers has an error in their credit file that negatively impacts their credit score. Half of medical bills reported on credit reports contain billing errors. Lenders respond to this negative information by offering you less favorable credit terms, offering you higher interest rates or even denying you credit altogether.
Because credit reporting errors result in negative consequences, you would think that the credit reporting agencies would fix the problem. However, realistically it is almost the opposite. Each of the credit bureaus has more than 200 million credit files to maintain. Every month there are more than 1 billion pieces of data that the credit bureaus must update. So, they value volume and speed over accuracy.
The credit reporting agencies are not responsible for the accuracy of your credit report. You are responsible for identifying and reporting errors. So, what is the best way to dispute credit report? Read on to discover the best way to fix your credit report.
How to Clean Up Credit Report
Are you wondering how to fix credit report? Disputing errors on your credit report is one of the easiest ways to quickly improve your credit score. Some mistakes can have a severe negative impact on your credit score. So, if you are considering buying a home, car or shopping for insurance, then it is wise to fix any mistakes on your credit report before applying.
So, how do you clean up credit report? It is imperative that you go through the proper steps to file a dispute as credit errors will not resolve themselves. Here are the steps:
- Request a free credit report from the three credit reporting agencies. You can get one free report each year from AnnualCreditReport.com. This is the best place to get all 3 credit scores.
- Next, pore over the information on your report. Ensure that all of your information is correct. Check the spelling of your name, addresses, birth date, social security number. Look at all of your accounts. Make sure that they are accurate. Highlight any information that is not correct.
- Write a dispute letter to the credit bureau. Do not attempt to dispute your credit report online directly with the agencies. This can lead to problems. Often, the credit bureaus merely ignore the dispute, and when you file online, there is no proof of your claim. So instead, write separate letters to all 3 credit reporting agencies. It can be beneficial to enlist the assistance of an FCRA lawyer in writing the letters. They are skilled at dealing with these companies and can help you fix credit reporting errors.
- Include supporting information – When you send the letters to the credit agencies, send any supporting proof of the error. For instance, if your name is spelled wrong, you might send a copy of your birth certificate. If your ex-husband’s debt is listed in your name, send proof that you were never responsible for the account in question.
- Send the dispute letters certified mail so that you have proof that you sent them.
Learn How To Write A Credit Dispute Letter
You will need to write a dispute letter to each credit reporting agency to challenge any incorrect information. Click here for a credit dispute letter template. Include the name and address of the account in dispute. Remember always to use courteous language when disputing an item.
Credit reporting agencies are required to review your dispute within 30 days. Once you receive a response, check to be sure that the dispute was resolved according to your satisfaction. If the credit bureau has still not provided the correct information, then you’ll want to contact an FCRA attorney to help you file a claim under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. This law was enacted to promote accurate and fair credit reporting.
An attorney can help you sue the agency under FCRA laws and remove the information from your report as well as get compensation for any damages.
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