Since 60 Minutes aired, 40 Million Mistakes: Is Your Credit Report Accurate?, their has been an increase in the filing of federal lawsuits under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) and Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (“FDCPA”) by consumers throughout the U.S. The 60 Minutes report explained that your credit information is monitored, bought and sold at a record pace these days. A mistake on your credit report can cost you a job, a great interest rate or even stop you from buying a home. The 60 Minutes news article shares an FTC investigation report that says that 1 in 10 Americans have credit report mistakes that might lower their credit score.
For a summary of your rights under the FCRA, click here. It’s important to know what is in your credit report before applying for credit. If you believe that your credit report contains errors call a credit report lawyer right away for a free consultation. Addressing these errors correctly is key. For example, if you send an online dispute request to the credit bureaus, you’ll only get a one-time dispute. However, if you send your requests via U.S. Mail, then you can continue your disputes until the matter is resolved, or you sue. Knowing your rights and having the right professionals working with you can speed up the credit repair process and potentially compensate you for the harm caused by these mistakes.
The most common mistake is the re-aging of information, which causes negative information to stay on a credit report longer than it should be. This drives down the credit score. This also gives the false impression that the debt is still collectible. Any consumer who suffers damages as a result of a violation under the FCRA is entitled to not only have this information corrected; they may bring a federal lawsuit and obtain actual damages. In the event there is a willful violation, punitive damages to punish the offender are available. Get the credit you deserve.