Educational Consumer Tips

Fair Credit Reporting

Author: Better Business Bureau
Published:

Your credit bureau report is based on information regularly
given to them by retailers and creditors with whom you have
loans, credit cards and other financial dealings. It also
contains matters of public record such as bankruptcy and court
judgments against you.
You have the right to dispute any information in your credit
record that you consider inaccurate, outdated or incomplete. To
register your objection write to the credit bureau explaining
why you believe the report is incorrect, and sending COPIES of
any documentation which proves your claim. The three major
credit reporting agencies are:


1. Equifax, PO Box 740240, Atlanta, GA 30374, 800-685-1111.
2. Experian, PO Box 949, Allen, TX 75013, 888-397-3742.
3. Trans Union, PO Box 390, Springfield, PA, 19064,
800-916-8800.


Unless your dispute is frivolous or irrelevant, the credit
bureau must reinvestigate the matter, and delete the information
from your report, if it can't verify the disputed facts. If you
disagree with the results of the reinvestigation you are
entitled to write a brief statement explaining your side of the
story, and that statement will become a part of your credit
report.
If the negative information in your report is accurate,
however, only time can ensure its removal. Credit bureaus are
generally permitted to report bankruptcies for 10 years and
other negative information for 7 years. There is nothing that
you or anyone can do to remove accurate information from your
credit file unless the reporting period has expired.
Remember that promises by any company to repair or clean up a
bad credit history can almost never be kept!