Credit Bureau Disputes

Written by Gregg Ruais
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If a delinquency appears on your credit report, and you believe it does not belong there, call the creditor immediately and explain the situation. When speaking with a customer service representative, be polite and professional. Yelling and cursing, no matter how angry you really are, will get you nowhere. After all, it's not the customer rep's fault an inaccurate blemish appears on your credit report.

Disputing Your Credit Report

If you are calling a credit card company, you will be transferred to the fraud division. You will need the account number that appears on the credit report next to the negative record. The person on the other line will most likely inform you that a written response to your claim will be mailed within two weeks. In certain instances, such as if the creditor says another name is associated with the account number, you will have to redirect your complaint to the credit bureaus. Either write a hand-written letter or fill out the online forms available on the bureau websites.

After you receive a response letter or email, make photo copies and be sure to keep the original for your own records. You will need copies of the letter as proof that the credit bureaus should clear your name. If a creditor has sent a letter of apology and reconciliation, forward it to the bureaus in writing, and keep copies of what you sent. If an investigation does not yield the results you were looking for, continue to dispute the record. It's better to have a disputed delinquency on record than one without a dispute.

Keep in mind that if the blemishes on the credit report are true, you will not find a way to get them off your record. Pay off your real debts, even if they have already hurt your credit. Lenders are much more likely to grant loans to people who have had problems in the past but paid their debts than those who have old debts left withstanding. In any situation, do the best you can to improve your score.

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