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Correcting Your Credit Report

By Janet Lacey
Published: Sunday, September 20th, 2009

Have you just ordered a credit report and seen error or inaccuracies? It is possible to correct them easily. You can also easily remove any negative entries such as late payments which potentially ruin your credit score.

Start off with the most basic step. Take a copy of your credit report and circle every item you believe has to be corrected. The next step would be to send this report back to the credit reporting agency. The address will l easily available on the credit report itself or even online. Explain clearly why you are disputing the entry. Request a through investigation into the matter and a correction of the entry. If you have any pertaining documents, send copies of these documents along. Code the documents according to the entries and send them along. However, do not send the originals along, send only the copies. Take care to send the letter and the documents by certified mail. Certified mail gives you the option of requesting for a return receipt. This way you can prove the letter was received by the reporting agency. Send a letter on the same lines to the creditor who is responsible for the inaccurate entry. Take care to send the mail to the right address. The address you send your payments to is rarely the address for complaints. Research and find the right address before you send in the mail.

You can also vary the personal identifying information. Many times names are printed with wrong spellings or the address is wrong. Get a document which shows the right address or spelling such as your driver’s license or your utility bill. In receipt of this document, the credit agency will correct the mistake. The credit agency will immediately start an investigation into your claim. They will contact your creditor and verify the information in the entry. If the creditor is not able to provide accurate information proving his side of the argument, the entry has to be corrected. Once the entry is corrected, the agency will send a free copy of the corrected credit report to your address. It would be better if you contact the creditor before the agency. The creditor might correct the error by the time agency begins an investigation. This way the process completes faster and with less hassle. It is possible to file disputes on the internet as well. If you are looking at an online credit report, there will be links present to dispute a particular entry. Some times, there is a special window for your remarks. However, many times there is just a multiple choice reason box from which you have to check your reason. 

After the investigation, if the credit reporting agency says the original information in the entry is accurate and should not be changed, they should send you details of the person you can contact to make a further enquiry about this entry. They should provide you wit ha written notice with details including name address and telephone number of a person whom you can contact. You can also ask the credit reporting agency to write a hundred character paragraph explaining your side of the story.

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