How to Fix Bad Credit Report information

Written by AZrealtor on May 14th, 2011. Posted in AZ HOME LOANS PROGRAMS

Fixing Bad Credit Report Information

How to repair your credit.

How to dispute information in a credit report

http://credit.about.com/od/creditreportscoring/a/disputereport.htm
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq., is a United States statute added in 1978 as Title VIII of the Consumer Credit Protection Act. Its purposes are to eliminate abusive practices in the collection of consumer debts, to promote fair debt collection, and to provide consumers with an avenue for disputing and obtaining validation of debt information in order to ensure the information’s accuracy.[1]  The Act creates guidelines under which debt collectors may conduct business, defines rights of consumers involved with debt collectors, and prescribes penalties and remedies for violations of the Act. It is sometimes used in conjunction with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

If you want to notify a lender or company that information it has sent to a credit bureau is inaccurate, there are three pieces of information you must submit in a letter:

* Enough information to identify your account. That means giving both your name and account number.

* The information you are disputing and the basis for the dispute. For instance, if you are disputing that you paid your Visa bill late, you would mention the dates on which the charges in question occurred and why you are disputing this.

* Information that supports your position, such as electronic banking records or proof of payments, such as canceled checks.

If a company provides an address where consumers can send such complaints, you must use it, Smith says. If it doesn’t give one on its website or elsewhere, you can send the letter to any address where it receives mail, and it will still be obligated to investigate your dispute.

Using Debt Validation to fix your credit report?

http://credit.about.com/od/debtcollection/qt/debtvalidation.htm
Debt validation is when you ask a bill collector to validate the debt that they are trying to collect from you. A collector must be able to prove that you owe what they say you owe or they cannot collect from you and they cannot negatively harm your credit. If they have harmed your credit, and they cannot provide you with proof that you owe them money then they must correct their errors on your credit report. They have 30 days to respond.

Debt Validation Letter – What Is Debt Validation?
Your request for validation must be made in writing and should be sent via certified mail with return receipt requested.

Filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission

If your letters to the credit reporting agencies do not work and your credt report is not corrected, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

Make sure you waited at about 45 days to allow the Credit Reporting Agency to investigate your dispute after sending your letters to the agencies. This is an important first step before filing any FTC complaint. FCRA requires credit reporting agencies to research your disputes within 30 days of receiving your letter, telephone call or online request. However, you need to keep in mind that postal mail can be a bit slow and wait the appropriate amount of time before taking advanced measures against one of them.

The FTC works to prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop and avoid them. To file a complaint or get free information on consumer issues, visit ftc.gov or call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357); TTY: 1-866-653-4261. The FTC enters consumer complaints into the Consumer Sentinel Network, a secure online database and investigative tool used by hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

Sample Letters to Debt Collectors and Credit Reporting Agencies

Sample Debt Collection Dispute and Validation Letters

Note: Select the letter most closely matching your circumstances adn modify it to correctly reprot the facts.  Your request for validation must be made in writing and should be sent via certified mail with return receipt requested.

Letter #1

Date

Your Name
Your Address

Collector’s Name
Collector’s Address

Dear Debt Collector,

I am writing to dispute the claim of your debt collection notice stating that I owe [describe letter or phone call’s claim]. I do not agree that this is a charge that I incurred or for which I am responsible. [OR—I do not agree that the amount of the charge is correct.]

Since I have only recently become aware of this debt claim from you or any other company, this letter serves as a dispute document in accordance with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Section 809(b) in reference to Debt Validation. Please note that according to the Act:

According to the FDCPA’s federal guidelines, I understand that once you receive this letter:

1. You may confirm that I have notified you within the 30-day period as described in subsection (a) that I am disputing this charge
2. You may not contact me until I receive verification of the debt and it is delivered to me in writing at your expense
3. You cannot add interest or fees unless allowed by the original contract or state law
4. You do not have to respond to this dispute. However, if you attempt to collect this debt again without validation, you will be in violation of the federal law.
5. Since I am disputing this debt, until it is validated, your information concerning this debt is considered inaccurate, and if you have already reported this debt to any credit reporting agency or credit bureau then you must immediately inform them of my dispute
6. Reporting information that you know to be inaccurate or failing to report information correctly violates the Fair Credit Reporting Act § 1681s-2.

Should you pursue a judgment without validating this debt, I will inform the judge and request the case be dismissed based on your failure to comply with the

FDCPA. Therefore, please provide me with the following:

1. the amount of the debt
2. the name of the creditor to whom the debt is owed
3. a verification and/or if applicable, a copy of any judgment
4. proof that you are licensed to collect debts in [Your State]

If you do not own this debt, send a copy of this dispute letter to the original creditor so they are also aware of my dispute with this debt.

Be advised that I am fully aware of my rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. I am keeping records of all

correspondence from you and your company, including recording all phone calls, and I will not hesitate to report violations of the law to the appropriate legal

authorities.

Signature
Your Printed Name

Letter #2

Re: Acct XXX-XX-XXXXX
I just pulled a copy of my credit report and noticed that your agency is reporting that I owe you a debt. I was not aware of this debt until now, and under my rights under the FDCPA, I request that you validate this debt.

Therefore, please provide me with the following:

1. the amount of the debt
2. the name of the creditor to whom the debt is owed
3. a verification and/or if applicable, a copy of any judgment
4. proof that you are licensed to collect debts in [Your State]

Sincerely,

By LaToya Irby, About.com Guide

Letter #3

Date

Your Name
Address
City, State Zip

Debt Collector’s Name
Address
City, State Zip
Re: Account Number

Dear Debt Collector:
This letter is sent in response to received by you on . I am requesting that you provide validation of this debt.

If you do not comply with this request, I will immediately file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and the [your state here] Attorney General’s office.

Civil and criminal claims will be pursued.

Sincerely,

Sample Credit Report Agency Dispute Letter

Send your credit report dispute via certified mail  with return receipt requested. This way you not only have proof that you sent the dispute, but also that the credit bureau received your dispute. Keep a complete copy of the letters you send and certified mail reciept along with any enclosures you sent.

Equifax

Experian

TransUnion

CSC Credit

1-800-685-1111
www.equifax.com

P.O. Box 7404256
Atlanta, GA 30374-0256

P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, GA 30374

P.O. Box 105873
Atlanta, GA. 30348

(888) 397-3742
www.experian.com

Dispute Department
P.O. Box 9701
Allen, TX 75013

P.O. Box 2002
Allen, TX 75013
1 888 397 3742

P.O. Box 2104
Allen, Texas 75013-2104

(800) 916-8800
www.tuc.com

Consumer Solutions
P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19022-2000

P.O. Box 1000
Chester, PA 19022
(800) 888-4213

P.O. Box 390
Springfield, PA. 19064-0390

(800) 305-7868
www.csc.com

CSC Credit Services
PO Box 619054
Dallas, TX
75261-9054

Note: These companies often change their complaint address.  Please check the address on their website and at credit.about.com/od/creditreportscoring/a/disputereport.htm.  To save time, consider sending your letters to multipul addresses you have.

Letter #1
Date
Your Name
Your Address, City, State, Zip Code

Complaint Department
Name of Company
Address
City, State, Zip Code
Dear Sir or Madam:

I recently obtained a copy of my credit report from your agency and found the following item(s) to be in error:

Item 1: I dispute ABC credit card account number 555111. This account has been paid in full.

I am requesting that the item be (removed, updated, or other suggested change) to correct the information.

Enclosed are copies of (use this statement if you have bank statements, cancelled checks, or other documentation) supporting my position. Please reinvestigate this (these) matter(s) and (delete or correct) the disputed item(s) as soon as possible.

Sincerely,
Your name
Enclosures: (List the documents you are enclosing. If none, do not include this section).

Letter #2

Date
Your Name
Your Address, City, State, Zip Code
Complaint Department
Name of Company
Address
City, State, Zip Code
Dear Sir or Madam:

I recently obtained a copy of my credit report from your agency and found the following item to be in error:

Item 1: I dispute ABC credit card account number 555111. This account has been paid in full.

I requested a Debt  Validaten under Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Section 809(b) from the reporting company.  No Debt Validation has been received from them within the 35 day statatory period.  I am requesting that this item be (removed, updated, or other suggested change) to correct the information.

Enclosed are copies of the Debt Validation letter (attached) I sent to the reporting company that was received by them on Month, Day, 2010 as evidencced by the US mail certificate of delivery (copy attached). Please immediately remove this item from my credit report.

Sincerely,
Your name
Enclosures: (List the documents you are enclosing. If none, do not include this section).

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