Are you frustrated with incorrect information on your credit report? Ready to take legal action against a credit bureau or bank for their mistakes? Consumer Protection Attorney Bill Clanton shares crucial insights in his video on the four essential steps you need to take before filing a lawsuit under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
Here are the for things you need to win your FCRA case.
1. Identifying the Error
The first step is recognizing an error on your credit report. These errors can manifest in various forms, including identity theft, which is a leading cause. With millions of identity theft reports yearly, this issue can lead to unauthorized accounts or charges in your name. Other common errors include mixed files due to the credit bureaus’ database issues, reinsertions of previously removed items, incorrect deceased status, and more.
2. Disputing the Error
Once you identify an error, the next step is to dispute it. While there are multiple ways to dispute, including apps, phone, and online, Bill Clanton emphasizes the effectiveness of written letter disputes. These allow for a detailed narrative and the inclusion of supporting documents. Sending disputes via certified mail can also provide proof of receipt.
3. Awaiting Dispute Results
After disputing, credit bureaus have 30 days (or 45 days if additional information is provided) to respond. They must forward your dispute to the information furnisher and report back the investigation results. If the error is not corrected following the dispute, this forms the basis of your lawsuit.
4. Facing Credit Denial
For a strong Fair Credit Reporting Act claim, you need to demonstrate damages. This is usually evidenced by a credit denial due to the disputed, inaccurate information. Bill Clanton advises reapplying for credit where you were initially denied after the dispute process. A subsequent denial can then be used to establish damages in your lawsuit.
Taking these steps before filing a Fair Credit Reporting Act case is essential. No matter where you live, courts all over the country are dismissing cases where there is no actual damages. Actual damages in an FCRA case are a being turned down for new credit. A credit line reduction will not work. Keep the adverse action letters you receive. They are proof of your damages.
Seeking Legal Assistance
Bill Clanton offers to review credit reports and dispute results at no cost, providing guidance through the dispute process. He stresses the importance of persistence in disputing errors, as many people give up too soon. If errors persist even after disputes, a lawsuit becomes a viable option.
Take action today. Don’t wait seven years for errors to fall off your report. Contact us or call us today.