What You Need to Know About Disputing Your Credit Report
Your credit report is a critical document that impacts many important aspects of your life. Lenders use your credit score to determine how risky you are as a borrower and can influence the terms of your loan (or whether you’re approved for a loan at all). Before renting or hiring you, landlords and employers may also look at your credit report. So, what happens if there’s an inaccuracy in your credit report? Luckily, you have the right to dispute any information on your report.
How to Dispute Your Credit Report
These are the important steps to follow when disputing your credit report:
- Identify Inconsistencies. Three main credit bureaus collect and maintain information about your credit history. They are Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Each one has slightly different information on file, so you should check all three. A free copy of your credit report is available from AnnualCreditReport.com once a year, the only website authorized by the government.Once you have your reports, please go through them line by line and look for any incorrect information. This could be the date they reported late payment or an account that isn’t yours—markdown anything wrong or incomplete.
You can do it yourself for free or hire credit repair professionals. The best way to dispute them is direct with the credit bureau, which will contact the lender to investigate your claim. If you have an error on your report, it’s important to get it fixed as soon as possible because it could damage your credit score and make life more complicated.
- Consider Contacting Your Lenders. Contact the lender directly before contacting the credit bureau(s). First, this gives you a chance to work out any disputes directly with the lender, but it also gives your lender another opportunity to correct its records before you go through the hassle of contacting a credit bureau.
- Dispute with the Credit Bureau. Each of the three major credit bureaus—Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion—have its process for disputing mistakes on your report. However, they all start by contacting them online or by mail, asking them to investigate and correct the error. Contacting in writing gives you a paper trail if there are problems later and lets you include supporting documentation.
- Examine the Findings of the Inquiry. Once the credit bureau has completed its investigation into your dispute claim, you should receive written notice of their findings. If the credit bureau has verified the accuracy of the information in question, you should receive notification that they will make no changes to it. However, if the bureau has determined that new or corrected information is warranted, they must send you a free copy of your credit report reflecting those changes.
We Can Help
Many people out there are suffering from bad credit. Fortunately, Lakeshore Law Center is here to help. Our law firm has helped countless people dispute their credit reports and eliminate the nasty black marks tarnishing their good name. We will sue on your behalf and represent you in court, so don’t hesitate—to surrender your case to us today and let us work on it. Take the first step towards protecting your good credit now. If you’re a resident of California in the communities of Yorba Linda, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, or Santa Ana, call us at (714) 854-7205 today to schedule an appointment.