Sarah Edwards | November 02, 2022
Summary: When you notice any incorrect information on your credit report, you should dispute it with Transunion immediately. Doing so will not impact your credit score, unless the incorrect info is removed and your score goes up. Protect your credit score and fight off debt collectors with SoloSuit.
Credit scores and reports can say a lot about their subjects. Strong credit scores, for example, give consumers access to favorable loans and credit opportunities. Similarly, if an employer checks a candidate’s credit report during the hiring process, a good credit score could help seal the deal.
Conversely, a poor credit report could prevent someone from renting an apartment, obtaining a credit card, or even signing up for a cell phone plan.
It’s essential to monitor your credit to know what lenders and other entities are saying about your financial activities. But statistics show that only 27% of American adults check their credit scores monthly.
One FTC study found that one in five consumers have errors on their credit reports. Such errors can range from innocuous to extremely disadvantageous. The worst mistakes could result in consumers paying more than necessary for credit products or even being denied loans.
Checking your credit report periodically helps ensure that creditors aren’t reporting incorrect information. It can also alert you to fraudulent activity, like identity thieves attempting to take out loans in your name.
Fortunately, the credit reporting bureaus allow people to review their credit reports annually free of charge. You can get a copy of your credit report from all three credit reporting bureaus by Annual Credit Report.com.
If you pull your Transunion credit report and notice errors, knowing how to file a dispute to remove them can be helpful. Filing disputes can protect you from mistakes that could cost you money or reduce your ability to obtain a loan.
The first thing you’ll want to do after obtaining a copy of your Transunion credit report is review it in its entirety. Pay particular attention to items like:
Compare each account with your records and note any inconsistencies or disagreements, like late payments, unknown accounts, and collections items you don’t recognize.
Credit reporting agencies are required to present accurate information about consumers. Even if a minor mistake doesn’t affect your credit score, it’s still a good idea to dispute it.
Rather than contacting Transunion directly, start by reaching out to your lenders if the mistake concerns one of your accounts. Sometimes, working with lenders can speed up the correction process.
If you file a dispute directly with Transunion concerning one of your accounts, they’ll reach out to your creditors to obtain evidence that verifies their reporting. Thus, if you contact your lender first, you effectively cut out the middleman and save time communicating with Transunion, who will just turn around and contact the creditor on your behalf.
Contacting the lender can put to rest any concerns you have about late payments or accounts you don’t recognize. The lender can often tell you exactly why they reported your account late or provide details of the accounts that appear on your report.
If you disagree with the lender’s perspective, you can provide them with evidence that proves your claims. For instance, if they’ve reported your account overdue, you might send them a copy of your payment from your bank statement. Every now and then, creditors mix up payments and fail to record them on the date of receipt, resulting in late payment reporting.
In some cases, you might have concerns related to an account you don’t recognize. If the information you get from the creditor still doesn't match up to your recollection, you may be the victim of identity theft. Victims of identity theft should take steps to report the theft, including notifying the FTC and local law enforcement.
If your lender refuses to accept your dispute, it’s best to work directly with Transunion. It’s completely free to dispute an incorrect item on a Transunion credit report.
Log in to your Transunion account to begin the process. If you don’t have one, you’ll need to create an account before you can start your dispute.
Once you’re logged in, click the “New Investigation” link and select the items you’d like to dispute on your report. If there are multiple items you’re not sure about, don’t hesitate to select them all before submitting your inquiry. Better safe than sorry.
Transunion allows you to include supporting evidence for each of your disputes. Providing evidence can clear up false information quicker and more efficiently than attempting a dispute without any additional details.
If you do submit a dispute without any supporting information, it’s doubtful that Transunion will rule in your favor.
They’ll most likely contact the creditor or debt collection agency to request details concerning your dispute. If the creditor can provide enough information, Transunion will side with them, deny the conflict, and force you to start the process over again.
Sometimes, Transunion won’t have enough information to confirm or deny your dispute. In such cases, they may ask you for additional details. You’ll need to provide the necessary evidence to resolve your dispute.
Transunion typically completes the dispute process within two weeks. In some cases, it may take them up to 30 days. The agency will send you an email when they’ve finished reviewing your dispute so that you’ll know when they’ve resolved your case. You can also log into your Transunion account at any time to check the status of your dispute.
In the event that you disagree with your dispute results, Transunion will advise you to work with the creditor directly. Even if your creditor disagrees with your dispute, they must still report that you’ve disputed the account to Transunion.
Assuming your creditor agrees with your claim after you’ve provided them with your supporting evidence, they’ll be responsible for either revising or deleting the item on your report.
Sometimes, creditors won’t respond to consumer disputes. This ordinarily happens if they don’t have any supporting information to counter the claim or if a dispute gets lost in the shuffle of paperwork.
You can attempt to force a creditor to respond by sending a follow-up request through the mail. If you decide to go this route, make sure you include a copy of your credit report and the supporting documentation for your claim. Also, ask for a return receipt from the post office so you’ll have proof that the creditor received the letter.
If the creditor still doesn’t respond to your claim, provide a copy of the letter you sent to the creditor, including proof of receipt, to Transunion. The agency must remove any negative information you dispute that the creditor fails to address.
You also have the option of filing a complaint against the creditor with the CFPB for failing to respond to your dispute on your Transunion credit report.
Usually, your credit score will improve within six weeks of the disappearance of the questionable item. You can compare your current score with your future score to determine how much of an impact the removal of the negative information had.
Once the dispute is resolved and Transunion has removed the negative information from your credit report, you can request a fresh copy of your report to confirm that it’s accurate. You may need to file further disputes if there’s still any incorrect information present.
It’s not possible to dispute a credit score. Your credit score is an automatic calculation determined by your payment history, your total amount of debt, the length of time you’ve had credit, and your particular combination of accounts.
Credit scores can range from 300 to 850. A score of at least 700 indicates that you have good or excellent credit, while anything below 700 is considered subprime or poor.
If you dispute one or more negative items on your credit report, your credit score will go up, provided that Transunion removes them. The impact of the removal can vary. Older items will likely have little effect on your credit score unless they’re particularly severe.
Checking your credit score is essential if you’re looking to improve your credit score in anticipation of applying for a loan, credit card, or other line of credit. If your reports show inaccurate details, getting them removed can enhance your score more or less immediately.
If you don’t find any inaccurate information on your credit report, you can still find other ways to improve your score. Paying debts, catching up on overdue accounts, and limiting your credit inquiries can all help increase a mediocre credit score.
When you owe a debt and fall behind on your payments, your credit score will probably take a hit. However, it is not uncommon for inaccurate and fraudulent debt information to find its way onto your credit report.
If you are a victim of identity theft, or if your creditor has transferred your debt to a collections agency who has reported inaccurate information to the credit bureaus, you
When a debt collector initially reaches out to claim you owe them, you should respond with a Debt Validation Letter within 30 days. This forces the collector to validate the debt, and if they cannot, they will most likely back off.
If they continue to report inaccurate information, you can file a dispute explaining that you never received a proper debt validation. Experian will reach out to the collectors and remove the information as soon as they find out that the reported debt is invalid.
Learn more about how a Debt Validation Letter can help you in this video:
SoloSuit makes it easy to fight debt collectors.
You can use SoloSuit to respond to a debt lawsuit, to send letters to collectors, and even to settle a debt.
SoloSuit's Answer service is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your Answer. Upon completion, we'll have an attorney review your document and we'll file it for you.
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