The best way to dispute credit report errors is to send the credit bureau a credit dispute letter. A dispute letter will obligate the bureaus to carry out an investigation to see if the claims you are making are legitimate and to correct the mistakes on your credit report that were listed in your letter.
Sometimes, the credit reporting agencies may disregard your dispute (even though they are valid to obligate them to investigate) and do nothing about it. When this happens, a credit report lawyer can represent you and force the credit bureaus to fix the inaccurate items on your credit report. They may also get you compensation for any damages that you could have incurred because of the errors staying on your report.
If you are unsure of how to write a dispute letter, read on or speak with an attorney to learn how to dispute credit report.
Writing a Dispute Letter to Credit Reporting Agencies
As mentioned before, the best way to dispute credit reports is to write a dispute letter to the credit reporting agencies. The Fair Credit Reporting Act was passed in 1970 to make sure that all consumer reports from every credit bureaus are recorded fairly and accurately. This includes investigating consumer’s reports when they send in a dispute letter.
Searching For Mistakes On Credit Reports
Before starting on a dispute letter, you should obtain the latest version of your credit report from each bureau (one may contain an error that others do not have). You can visit AnnualCreditReport.com to receive a free annual copy of your credit report from each of the three national credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion).
Check each report thoroughly for any mistakes. Circle every mistake you find on your reports so that the credit bureaus can find them quickly for their investigation. You can start writing your dispute letter once you have found all the errors.
Writing Credit Dispute Letter
Now that you have the items that you want to credit bureaus to correct, you can get started on writing your dispute letter. If you are not experienced writing one, follow the sample letter template here (it’s important to format the letter properly).
When listing the items you want to dispute, make sure to describe them as best as you can. If the credit reporting agencies find your dispute as frivolous (lacking enough information for an investigation), they are not required to carry out an investigation.
Once you are finished writing the letter(s), send them via certified mail, return receipt requested, so you have the record that the credit bureaus have received your letter.
Filing A Lawsuit Against Credit Bureaus
In some cases, the bureaus can refuse or ignore your dispute letter (even though your claims are legitimate). When this happens, you can take it up to the court to get the bureaus to fix the issue.
Hiring a credit dispute lawyer, in that case, will help immensely. FCRA lawyers can provide legal advice that can help you resolve your situation. They can also file the lawsuit against the bureau for you to get your credit report fixed. They may also recover compensation for you for any damages the credit report errors have caused.
Check Constantly For Credit Report Errors
A good way to make sure your credit reports are free of errors is to check them regularly. Even if your credit report is accurate from one credit reporting agency, others may have few items that are erroneous.
It can be a hassle, but making sure that you don’t have any credit report errors will keep you from experiencing negative consequences (such as being turned down for a job because of a mixed credit file).