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Credit Reports and Scores

Credit Reporting


How can I dispute the information in my credit report?

Make a note of any items that you believe to be wrong, outdated, or inaccurate.

A dispute form comes with the credit report. Use it to list any items that you feel are incorrect. By filling it out and returning it you are requesting a reinvestigation into your file.

Under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the credit bureau you submitted your dispute to has 30 days from the date it receives your letter to conduct its investigation. This 30-day period can be extended to 45 days, if the agency feels you didn't provide enough documentation to support your dispute. If the credit bureau can no longer verify the debt, or it is outdated, the bureau must immediately remove those items from your report. Within five days after completing the investigation, the credit bureau must inform you in writing of the results, which should include a new credit report reflecting any deletions, changes, or insertions. Be advised: if a creditor later verifies the debt, the credit bureau will reinsert the information.

If the credit bureau decides not to investigate your file because it considers the dispute "frivolous and irrelevant," it must inform you within five days of this decision. At this point, you have the right to add a 100-word statement to your report, which gives you the opportunity to explain any negative information in your file.



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