Computerized credit history scoring systems will

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Computerized credit history scoring systems will lower your credit score and harm your credit record each time your credit file is reviewed for credit granting purposes. Therefore, don’t apply for credit you don’t really need. It is important to order a copy of your credit report from all three of the national credit bureaus, not just from one, because each credit bureau is likely to have slightly different information about you in its database. Three rea- sons for this are: 1. Credit bureaus get most of their information from their subscribers and they do not share all of the same subscribers. Therefore, accounts that appear in the credit report generated by one of the three national credit reporting agencies may not be in the reports produced by the other two. 2. There may be different errors and problems in the credit files each credit reporting agency is maintain- ing on you. 3. Reviewing each of your credit records regularly helps protect you against the financial impact of being the Warning Credit Reporting Agencies, Reports, and Scores 165
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Credit Hell victim of identity theft, which is a federal crime. Identity theft occurs when someone steals your per- sonal and/or financial information in order to drain your bank account, charge up your credit accounts, open new credit accounts in your name but without your authorization, and so on. Unless you check out the information in your credit files on a regular basis, you may not know that your identity has been stolen until you begin getting calls and letters from credi- tors or debt collectors asking you to pay debts you do not know about and did not incur. At that point, your credit record will already have been damaged. Most credit bureaus, including Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, delete Chapter 13 bankruptcies from consumer credit files after seven years. Your state may have its own credit reporting law and that law may provide for stiffer penalties for violators than does the FCRA or the two laws that amended it. Therefore, when your rights have been violated, your attorney may want to file a lawsuit in your state’s court rather than in federal court. Whether you can sue in your state’s court will depend on how your rights were violated. How to Order Your Credit Reports If you are not eligible yet for your free annual credit re- ports under FACTA or if you have already obtained those Tip Tip 166
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reports and want to order additional copies of the reports, you must contact each credit bureau individually by phone, mail, or online. Here is their contact information: Equifax Disclosure Department P.O. Box 740241 Atlanta, Georgia 30374 (800) 685-1111 www.equifax.com Experian National Consumer Assistance Center P.O. Box 2104 Allen, Texas 75013 (888) 397-3742 www.experian.com/yourcredit TransUnion Consumer Disclosure Center P.O. Box 1000 Chester, Pennsylvania 19002 (800) 888-4213 www.transunion.com To avoid a delay when ordering your credit report by mail, be sure to include the following information in your request letter: Your full name, including your middle name. Be sure to note whether you are a “Jr.,” “Sr.,” “III,” and so
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  • Spring '12
  • zinctolg
  • credit score, Credit history, Fair Credit Reporting Act, CREDIT REPORTING AGENCY, credit reporting agencies

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