The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires that when a consumer sends a dispute to a credit bureau it is supposed to forward that dispute to the creditor reporting the inaccurate or incomplete information. The credit bureau must give the creditor all relevant information related to the dispute. The creditor must then review the information and conduct an investigation into whether the report is accurate. If the creditor determines the disputed information is inaccurate it must correct the description of the account (called a “tradeline”).
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the governmental watchdog over credit reporting, recently issued reminders to creditors about their obligations under the FCRA. The CFPB said it expects creditors to (1) maintain a system capable of receiving information about disputes, (2) conduct investigations using all information forwarded to them by the credit bureaus and their own information, (3) report the results of the investigation back to the credit bureau, (4) provide corrected information to all of the credit bureaus, and (5) modify, delete or permanently block incomplete or inaccurate information that a creditor might have provided to the credit bureaus. The CFPB said it is monitoring complaints from consumers and will bring enforcement actions when necessary. If your credit reports are showing inaccurate information about your debts contact us to talk about what response to take. Pursuing violations of the FCRA requires that specific steps be followed before relief can be sought in court. We can help walk you through what to do and advise whether legal action is warranted.