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You don’t have the right to have your credit report right.
That’s so bizarre, I’m saying it again. “You don’t have the right to have your credit report right.”
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), was an enormous victory for consumers when it was passed in 1970. And it gives you important rights. The right to see your credit report (credit file disclosure) annually, for free. (Now at annualcreditreport.com. NOT from those scammers at freecreditreport.com.) The right to get your credit report anytime you’ve been turned down for credit.
But NOT the right to have your credit report be right. You only have the right to an investigation. (The law calls it a reinvestigation. On the theory, I guess, that they should have already investigated it once, when they put it there.)
To trigger your right to a reinvestigation, you have to dispute with the credit bureaus. You have to do a credit report dispute.
In 2003, you got the right to dispute directly with the creditor. But it’s an empty right. If they don’t do anything about it, there’s nothing you can do to make them. (The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau can make them, but all YOU can do is complain.)
So, you need to submit disputes to the big three credit bureaus. Here’s how.
For your Equifax Report:
- Please go to the following website:
- Click on “Get Started” and enter your personal information. It will ask for the 10-digit conformation number. Enter your confirmation number located at the top right hand corner of your report.
- Click on “Negative Information.” You should see a list of Open Accounts and Closed Accounts.
- Locate the account you wish to dispute under closed accounts and click on “Dispute Item” on the right of the account.
- Check the box that says “My account is included in my bankruptcy.”
- In the box provided, enter “Bankruptcy discharged xx-xx-xxxx. Case no. xx-xxxxx-xxx.”
- Then click “Add Dispute.”
- Then click “Continue” until you are able to submit your dispute.
- If you need to dispute more items, repeat steps 4-8 until complete.
For your Trans Union Report:
Please go to the following website:
- Enter your personal information as requested.
- It will then ask you for your file number: please enter your Trans Union file number located at the top right hand corner of yourreport
- Then click “next” until you see “Step 7: Dispute your Credit Report.”
- Click on “add dispute.”
- Enter the following information as it appears on your report:
- Company Name: XXXXXXXXX
Account Number: XXXXXXXXXX
- Reason for Dispute: Click on “This Account is in bankruptcy.”
- Then click Add.
- Repeat step 6 until you have added all of the accounts you wish to dispute.
- Then click “Next.”
- You should see a screen that says “Enter Any Comment.” Enter the following information. “Bankruptcy discharged xx-xx-xx. Case No. xx-xxxxx-xxx.”
- Then click “Next” and you should see a summary of the disputes that you entered.
- Finally, click “Submit.”
For your Experian Report:
- Please go to the following website:
(Experian also has their own video tutorial on how to file a dispute which is helpful. The video is located herehttp://bcove.me/mm8xw2wf )
- Check the box “Start a New Dispute Online” and select “Continue.”
- Check the box “My Credit Report has a Report Number” and select “Continue.”
- Enter the credit report number located at the top of your credit report, your state, social security number, and zip code. Be sure to check the three boxes at the bottom and select “Submit.”
- You should see a Report Summary.
- Select the blue hyperlink that states “potentially negative” or “negative accounts.”
- You should see a list of all of the negative accounts. Select the account by clicking on the account name that you wish to dispute.
- You should now see item details. Select the orange button that says “Dispute this item” located to the right of “item detail.”
- From the dropdown menu below “I believe that this item is inaccurate because:”, choose the option that states “Included in my bankruptcy.”
- You should also see a blank white box where you can enter more details. Enter the following information: “Bankruptcy discharged xx-xx-xxxx. Case no. xx-xxxxx-xxx.”
- Click “submit your dispute.”
- If you need to dispute more items, repeat steps 7-11 until complete.