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Step-By-Step Credit Report Review and Dispute Process
- Upon verification of your identity, you can get your credit report online, or you may get your 3-in-1 Credit Report, which contains a side-by-side comparison for all three of your credit reports: Experian, Equifax, TransUnion.
- You should carefully review your credit report:
Filing a Dispute Online. If, after reviewing your report, you believe it contains items that may not be accurate, you may file a dispute online for fastest resolution. Disputing information online is FREE, and complete step-by-step instructions are available online at each bureaus website to walk you through the online dispute filing process. You may also contact each bureau by mail. Once you have filed a dispute:
- Personal Profile - (Legal name, current and previous addresses, social security, date of birth, current and previous employers). Make sure this information is correct, and doesn't contain unfamiliar or similar names, a junior, senior, or other generation.
- Credit Summary - An overview of your current and past credit status, including the total number of open and closed accounts in your name, the balances, and delinquencies. Make sure all the accounts listed are yours, and that the related information is correct as it appears.
- Public Records - State, Federal, and County records on Bankruptcies, foreclosures, suits, wage attachments, liens, judgments, overdue debt from creditors/collection agencies, etc. Review this carefully, as public records remain on your credit reports for 7-10 years.
- Recent Credit Inquiries - A record of who has obtained a copy of your credit report. Inquiries remain on your report for up to two years. Make sure you check this carefully. If you see credit inquiries that are unfamiliar to you, it may be a warning sign of identity theft, as someone else may have stolen your identity and applied for credit in your name. (See Identity Theft)
- Account History - This section contains detailed information on each account you've opened in the past, including payment status, and a 24-Month payment history. Check this information carefully to make sure it is accurate, and that all accounts listed are your accounts.
- The credit bureau(s) will then contact the source of the information, and ask the creditor to check their records for verification.
- Within 30 days, the creditor who filed the information is responsible for responding (21 days for Maine residents) to the investigation. They will either verify the information, or they may request that the credit bureau remove it from your credit report.
- The credit bureau will then notify you by email when the results of your dispute are available to be viewed online, so that you may be linked directly to the results, if you choose to request online delivery when you begin a dispute.
- The investigations may not take 30 days. At your convenience, at any time, you may go online to check the status of your dispute investigation to get an update on the progress of your dispute.
Below is the contact information for all three major credit bureaus.
For fastest dispute resolution, online links to each bureau are provided:Equifax
P.O. Box 105873
Atlanta, GA 30348http://www.equifax.com
Consumer Disclosure Center
P.O. Box 1000
Chester, PA 19022
(800) 916-8800 or (800) 888-4213
P.O. Box 2104
Allen, TX 75013-2104