Credit Bureaus Give V.I.P.’s Get Special Treatment

Experian, Equifax and Trans Union maintain lists of V.I.P.’s like politicians, judges and other influential people who get special help from employees here in the U.S. in fixing mistakes on their credit reports. Everyone else is herded into a largely automated system under which an employee spends about two minutes reading the dispute after which the dispute is categorized using a two or three digit code. The coded dispute is sent to the source of the inaccuracy, which may be a credit card company or debt collector. A front page story by Tara Siegel Bernard in today’s NY Times contrasts...

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Class Action Alleges Experian Illegal Access to Consumer Files

With exceptions, the Fair Credit Reporting Act requires credit reporting agencies to limit access to consumers credit files to persons with whom the consumer has a credit relationship. A credit relationship is one in which the consumer and a creditor agreed the consumer could defer payment. Persons who do not have a credit relationship with the consumer have no right to look at the consumer’s credit files. If a person’s car is towed and stored off the street without his or her consent, the tow company will typically give the owner a notice to pay the tow and storage bills....

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IRS Makes it Easier to Get Tax Liens off Credit Reports

IRS has changed its rules concerning the filing of tax liens against taxpayers, which IRS reports to the credit reporting agencies. Tax liens dramatically reduce credit scores. It has been difficult to get the tax liens off one’s credit reports even when the lien is paid. IRS said it changes will help people with tax debts get a fresh start. One of the biggest changes is that people who pay their tax debt in full or enter into a direct debit installment agreement can ask to have the tax lien withdrawn. Once that is done, the taxpayer may ask the...

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Experian Reporting Rent Data on Credit Reports

Experian has announced that starting this year, it will be reporting “positive” rental data from its RentBureau® division into the traditional credit files. Starting in 2012, Experian will start reporting negative rental payment information. Experian claims this will help the 50 million underbanked consumers, such as college students and recent immigrants, to build credit with on-time rental payments. What it will mostly do is lower renters’ credit scores if, as frequently happens, they are late on a rental payment. The ding on their credit will follow them around for seven years. There really should be some restrictions on reporting someone...

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Why Should I Bother Writing a Letter When I Can Call or Email?

Frequently people ask me how they can get the credit bureaus to correct inaccurate information on their credit reports. I always tell them to dispute inaccurate credit reports via letter sent Certified Mail, Return Receipt. Why do that, you ask, when I can dispute on-line or by phone? If you look at their websites, you know the credit bureaus encourage consumers to phone or email. It is almost impossible to find an address to mail a written dispute letter to. There are COMPELLING REASONS to do your disputes in WRITING, Certified Mail, Return Receipt. If you have put it in...

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