Requesting a copy of your credit report from the three credit bureaus is only the first step. What should you do next upon checking your report? In this article, let us discuss the correct steps on how to dispute credit report errors to improve your personal credit.
Know your rights as a consumer. Consumers have the right to a free credit reports from the three major credit bureaus once each year. You can request for your free annual credit report from www.annualcreditreport.com. Take note that this website is the only online resource authorized by the government to distribute free consumer credit reports. You may find other websites that offer free reports but once you sign up, you may later discover that the service is not completely free after all.
All consumers have the right to dispute inaccurate items in their credit reports so you should not hesitate to do the necessary steps to correct errors in your file. In some cases, a creditor may report incorrect charges. Errors may also happen if you have been a victim of ID theft or when someone uses your account without consent.
Make sure that your complaint is valid. Before attempting to file a dispute, it is important to make sure that your complaint is valid. If you are disputing paid charges that still appear as unpaid in your report, make sure that you have documents (receipt) that will support your claim.
Write a dispute letter. A credit dispute letter should be clear and concise. You do not need to include an elaborate explanation about your complaint as long as you can point out the specific items in your credit report that must be corrected.
Enclose supporting documents. It’s a good idea to enclose COPIES (not originals) of documents that support your claim. You must also include a photocopy of your credit report with the items in dispute clearly marked.
Send via registered post mail. When sending important business letters, it is best to send via First Class Mailing to ensure that your mail will reach the intended recipient and not get lost along the way.
Follow up if needed. In case the credit bureau does not respond with your first letter, send a follow-up letter right away. Include a copy of your original letter and remind the bureau of your consumer rights and their obligation to respond to your complaint.
Wait for 30 Days. Upon receiving your dispute letter, the credit bureau has 30 days to complete its investigation regarding your complaint. After this period, you should receive a letter from the bureau informing you about the result of the investigation. If your dispute is found valid, the bureau will notify the two other credit reporting agencies about the corrections made and you will receive an updated copy of your credit report for free.
Dispute one account at time. In case you find errors in more than one account, it is best to send a separate dispute letter for each account to ensure that all issues will be properly addressed.
About the Author:
Suzy Vanstrusen is a credit analyst and a writer on the website EZCreditRepairSolutions.com. She has been providing consumers with tips and wise information about credit repair as well as helping you out more with your bad credit loans. Copyright © 2011
- Free Downloads of Credit Dispute Letter
- How Well Do You Know Your Credit Report
- Tips on How you can Dispute the Errors in your Credit Report
- How To Fix Credit Report Disputes