Dealing With Incorrect Information On Credit Reports: Boston Attorney’s Guide – Did you know that up to a quarter of all consumers may have errors on their credit report? Unfortunately, it is true. In 2017, the majority of complaints received by the Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) were related to inaccurate information reported on consumer credit reports.

A study conducted by the FTC in 2012 found that about 25% of consumers had at least one error on one of their financial reports. Some of those buyers end up paying high interest rates on loans due to mistakes that bring down their credit.

Dealing With Incorrect Information On Credit Reports: Boston Attorney’s Guide

From this information, you can see that it is very likely that you may have an error in your credit report. Let’s go over some common types of credit report errors and how to correct errors on your credit report.

Common Errors On Credit Reports That One Should Be Careful About! > Blog

The first thing you’ll need to do to spot errors on your credit report is, of course, get a copy of your credit report.

You can get your free credit report from, which is the only website authorized by the government to provide your free annual report.

Under the FCRA, by law, you are entitled to one free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus once every 12 months. You can choose to order all three credit reports at a time one or the order of each individual report at different times during the year.

Beware of websites that claim to offer free credit reports or tests, especially if they ask you for payment information.

How To Dispute Error On Credit Report

However, there are some reputable websites where you can check a simplified version of your credit report for free, such as CreditKarma , CreditSesame , WalletHub , and Bankrate . They can provide this service by marketing credit products to consumers.

You can also request a free credit report if you have been denied credit because of information found in your credit report. The credit report must be from the credit bureau that issued the original report to the lender.

Additionally, you may be eligible for a free supplemental report if you are unemployed and planning to look for work, if you receive government assistance, or if you have been a victim of crime.

Statistics experts recommend checking your credit report at least once a year, so be sure to take advantage of every opportunity to get a free copy of your credit report.

How Can I Spot Common Errors On Credit Reports?

If you have a “double jeopardy” with a collection account on your credit report, you can dispute the duplicate collection.

If there are any errors on your credit report, you can contact the credit bureau that reports the incorrect information to resolve the issue. Your credit report should include information on how to file a dispute.

When you submit your dispute, it is important to provide all the information that the credit bureau will need to process your claim.

The Federal Trade Commission provides a guide to errors on credit reports and a sample FCRA dispute letter for consumers to use as guidance during the dispute process.

Understanding Your Credit

Although it is possible to dispute credit report errors online, credit reporting experts recommend instead writing a letter and sending it in the mail with documents to prove your identity and support.

If you try to dispute an error online or over the phone, you may not be able to provide sufficient supporting evidence, and the tax office may dismiss your dispute as frivolous.

It is also recommended that you send your letters by certified mail with return receipt requested to ensure that the letters have been received. Additionally, it is a good idea to keep copies of your correspondence in case you need to get outside help.

If there is more than one error on your credit report to address, it’s a good idea to send a separate letter for each dispute, since credit officers may reject a list of multiple disputes.

Credit Repair: Fixing Mistakes On Your Credit Report

If you have too many mistakes to dispute or if you have been victimized by fraud, you may want to consider hiring a credit repair service to help with the process. [Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links.]

You should also contact the lender that provides information to the credit bureaus to make sure the error is corrected at the source. The FTC also provides a sample dispute letter to send to data providers.

If you neglect this step, the error may reappear on your credit report the next time the creditor reports to the bureaus.

If the error on your credit report is the result of identity theft, it may be a good idea to contact the credit bureaus to place a fraud alert or credit freeze on your account.

How To Dispute A Credit Report

A fraud alert requires lenders to take extra steps to verify your identity if someone tries to open an account in your name, while a credit limit prevents anyone from looking at your credit file except for businesses you’re associated with.

Remember that if you are planning to buy trade lines, all fraud alerts and freezes must be removed first, or the trade lines will not print.

In this Credit Score video from our YouTube channel, financial expert John Ulzheimer shares the best way to dispute your credit report.

Once the credit bureau receives your dispute, they have 30 days to investigate your claim. If their investigation cannot confirm the information on your credit report, they must update it with correct information or delete the item.

Big Credit Bureaus, Big Complaints

In addition, the credit reporting agency is required to provide you with written documentation of the results of the investigation.

You are also entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the company if your credit report has been changed as a result of a dispute. This free copy is not listed as one of the free annual credit reports from

Upon your request, the credit bureau must notify any entity that has pulled your report in the past six months about the corrections made to your report. If someone has pulled your report for business purposes within the past two years, you can request that an updated copy of your report be sent to them.

One option for dealing with unresolved disputes is to add consumer information to your credit file, although this may not be the best strategy depending on what you’re trying to accomplish.

How To Dispute Errors On Your Credit Report

If your dispute is denied and you disagree with the credit bureau’s decision, you have the option of adding a consumer statement to your credit report to explain the situation. However, this is not necessarily the best solution.

First of all, the information is not included in your credit score, so it will not help your chances when the lender uses the automated process to approve or reject applicants. If it’s a case where the underwriter is looking at your credit report, adding consumer information may unnecessarily draw their attention to something negative, especially if the content is out of date.

Another option is to submit a second dispute with additional supporting documents to try to get the credit bureau to investigate the dispute a second time.

If the credit bureau still can’t correct the information on your credit report, you can file a complaint with the CFPB.

What Damages Can I Recover If There Is False Information On My Credit Report ?

The CFPB may not be able to force the credit bureaus, as private companies, to do anything, but the involvement of the government agency could encourage the credit bureaus to rethink their position.

Continuing to report incorrect information after you have disputed it is a violation of the FCRA. If you feel that the credit bureau is violating your rights under the FCRA, you have the option of speaking with an attorney about possible legal action.

Although a dispute on your credit report does not directly affect your credit score, if it causes a change to your credit report, then you may see an impact on your credit score.

When a disputed account is investigated, its status will show as “disputed” on your credit report, which affects how it is treated by credit bureaus.

Experian, Equifax And Transunion Offer Weekly Free Credit Reports For A Year

According to, the VantageScore model temporarily excluded all accounts from consideration. If the account has bad credit associated with it, then the score may increase temporarily as a result of not linking that account.

On the other hand, this also means that you will lose all valid information related to this account for a while, such as its age, which can have a negative impact on your score.

The FICO score only ignores specific disputed information, such as late payments, but not the entire account. As a result, your credit score may increase due to bad information being excluded from the list while positive information about the account continues to contribute to your score.

Hopefully, winning a credit dispute will improve your credit score, although this is not guaranteed.

Cfpb Warns Creditors They’re Liable For Credit Report Errors: Plain Dealing

Some buyers try to use this system to their advantage by making negative claims about their reports in order to get a temporary boost and then apply for a loan. However, not only

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