The difference between credit repair and fair credit reporting | Bill Clanton

The difference between credit repair and fair credit reporting

Credit repair organizations serve a different function than fixing inaccurate information on your credit report. It’s easy to confuse the two.

Credit Repair Companies

A credit repair organization will clean up every negative item on your credit report whether it’s true. At least they will try to clean up every item on your credit report. Sometimes they’re successful sometimes they’re not they use all kinds of different tactics to do this. They play one credit reporting agency against another, they time their disputes very precisely so that they can take advantage of flaws in the system, and oftentimes they were able to get good results for people whose who have very negative credit.

Disputing Inaccurate Information

Disputing inaccurate credit reporting is different than engaging a credit repair organization to repair credit. Inaccurate items often appear on credit reports with no explanation. It is estimated that 1 in 20 people have incorrect information on their credit report. Sometimes this is a result of identity theft, your credit file getting mixed up with someone else, errors by the credit reporting agencies, or the “furnishers” that furnish the data to the agencies.

If an item on your credit report is truly inaccurate then the credit reporting agencies and furnishers are required to investigate your dispute and then correct the information. In fact credit reporting agencies are required to have policies and procedures to ensure the maximum possible accuracy of the information they report. They are not allowed to just parrot or repeat what a furnisher tells them. They have to do their own an investigation.


What happens when you dispute

When you file dispute or send a dispute to a credit reporting agency that agency has five days to send it to the furnisher of that information, the furnisher then has 30 days to get back to the agency with the results of their investigation, then the credit reporting agency has to get back to you. That whole process cannot take longer than 45 days. Often the first dispute does not get the desired result sometimes it takes as many as four or five disputes.

How to Dispute

If there is inaccurate information on your credit report then you should dispute it. The credit reporting agencies and funishers have a duty to report only truthful accurate information. You can find any number of forms and ideas if you search for them, but the best way to start the dispute process is with the form the Federal Trade Commission provides. It is here:

Once you send it out, expect to wait a while before you hear anything. Also, don’t expect it to be fixed with one dispute. Save any response you get, and send another dispute.


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About The Author

Bill Clanton

Over the years my office has helped thousands of consumers who were cheated, ripped-off, and mistreated by debt collectors, credit reporting agencies, banks, credit unions, and car dealers. If you have a problem with a business being dishonest with you give me a call. I’d love to set them straight.