The Fair Credit Reporting Act is designed to protect consumers from inaccurate or outdated information on credit reports.
CONSUMER REPORTING AGENCY REINVESTIGATIONS and The Fair Credit Reporting Act
All references to code sections are courtesy of the Legal Information Institute at Law.Cornell.edu.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act requires the Credit Reporting Agencies, or Consumer Reporting Agencies to conduct a reinvestigation and the procedures around that reinvestigation.
The section that discusses the requirements for reinvestigation of a disputed item is 15 U.S.C. §1681i.
As usual, we start with the statute. Please note that we will only be reviewing the section on reinvestigations, so the rest of the section will not be reprinted or discussed.
(5) Treatment of inaccurate or unverifiable information
(A) In general
If, after any reinvestigation under paragraph (1) of any information disputed by a consumer, an item of the information is found to be inaccurate or incomplete or cannot be verified, the consumer reporting agency shall—
(i) promptly delete that item of information from the file of the consumer, or modify that item of information, as appropriate, based on the results of the reinvestigation; and
(ii) promptly notify the furnisher of that information that the information has been modified or deleted from the file of the consumer.
This means that, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the consumer credit reporting agency must, after reviewing the credit file and information that you provided in conjunction with your request for reinvestigation, must remove the disputed information, if the information cannot be confirmed.
For example- If you have a credit card or perhaps a line of credit with a bank, and the bank reports that you are late one month. You have proof that you sent payment, and that they cashed your check on or before the due date.
In order to preserve your rights, you must send your dispute to the consumer credit reporting agencies, and provide them with all the information they need to review this account. If the consumer credit reporting agency cannot verify that the information is accurate, they are required to either delete the information or alternatively, to modify the reporting of the tradeline in the credit file to show that you were not late, and notify the furnisher of the information (your creditor) that they have removed or modified the information in your credit file. Under a different provision, they are required to have specific procedures to prevent the inaccurate information from reappearing in your credit file.
If the information is accurate, it is proper for the information to remain, so it is important to remember that just because you dispute, and they deal with your dispute incorrectly, does not mean that you have a right to sue. The Fair Credit Reporting Act is NOT like the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. They must report inaccurate, or accurate but misleading and incomplete, information in order to have a right to sue at all.
If you have been impacted by anything we mentioned here, you can make an appointment to see us.
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The rights afforded to you, as a consumer, under the FCRA and the FDCPA means that a corporation or party who has violated your rights may ultimately be made to pay for statutory damages, actual damages, and your legal fees. Therefore, if we agree to represent you in any case, you won’t pay any attorney’s fees unless we are successful and we recover on your behalf. We are here to serve and have assisted many consumers TO enforce their legal rights. Let us try and see if we can help you too. That means you pay no fee in your case unless we recover.
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