It has been estimated that as many as 75% of all credit reports contain errors and inaccuracies. The FCRA is the Fair Credit Reporting Act and it was enacted back in 1979 to allow consumers the opportunity to dispute problems on their credit report and to promote the fairness, accuracy and privacy of personal information on credit reports. With so many potential errors on credit reports it is likely that at some point you may need to consider credit repair as an option to eliminate the inaccurate listings on your report.
The FCRA gave you the right to dispute the errors on your account. After receiving the dispute the credit bureaus and lenders have a certain amount of time to verify the validity of the information or it must be removed from your account. Credit repair can be accomplished on your own or you can engage the services of a professional credit repair company.
Be aware however, that the Federal Trade Commission states clearly on their website that ?No one can legally remove accurate and timely information from a credit report. The law allows you to ask for an investigation of information in your file that you dispute as inaccurate or incomplete?.
This statement seems to be very clear and explicit and that is one reason why the critics of credit repair will try to dissuade you from any attempts to repair your credit by telling you that trying to repair your credit is futile. The fact of the matter is that you can make a significant difference in your credit score and on your report when you repair your credit.
Even thought the FTC statement seems quite straightforward, there is quite a bit of ambiguity in the quote when it comes to real credit reports and real situations. Up to 75% of all credit reports are deemed to contain mistakes. Since this is the case, credit repair companies actually offer a valuable service. Of course, you can do it yourself and you may want to consider that but it does take time and energy and if you already have a busy life you may not want to tackle a major project like that on your own.
Since ?accurate and timely? information should not be removed from a credit report, what are the criteria to define ?accurate and timely?? Many times miscommunications or mistakes happen between consumers and lenders and something that may be considered ?accurate? may not be that at all.
Many credit reports have issues that are completely inaccurate. Listings that belong to someone else, duplicate entries, listings that have been on your report for longer than 7 years, and anything that is the result of identity theft need to be removed from your account. These issues frequently show up on credit reports.
As a consumer you also have the right to dispute any item that you think is misleading, ambiguous, unverifiable, biased or questionable. Occasionally there may even be issues that the lender feels are accurate but you were never able to defend yourself with your side of the story. One reason why it is so crucial that a consumer can dispute negative listings is because of the fact that there are always two sides to a story. You can dispute anything showing on your report that is inaccurate, untimely, misleading, incomplete, ambiguous or questionable either on your own or by employing a professional credit repair service.