Credit reports can have a dramatic effect on an individual’s access to loans and credit cards, affecting their quality of life, relationships, and the availability of specific investment opportunities like property ownership. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) regulates credit reporting agencies, creditors, and any other agency that handles or is dependent on credit reports. Credit enforcement claims regulated under the FCRA are not incredibly fact based, and can be prosecuted very efficiently and effectively if you are willing to work with an attorney.
Credit damage occurs when a third party such as a bank, debt collector, or other credit reporting agency causes negative, detrimental information to be included on your credit report. This information is most commonly provided by the “big 3” credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian, and Transunion.
When this situation takes place, you can end up with financially damaging consequences from increases in out-of-pocket expenses that are a causality of having a lower credit score, or through a reduced credit capacity. Should a creditor’s conduct be considered malicious, oppressive, or is deemed to have acted recklessly or in error, under the stipulations of the FCRA damages may be able to be reclaimed.
It is a fairly simple concept, especially for those that have already experienced the situation, once your credit score drops, in turn, interest rates on credit cards climb at an exponential rate. You’ll also find that you are denied for credit that otherwise would have been previously granted. Damage to your credit rating certainly can cause immeasurable harm dependent upon your aspirations and current place in the financial world.
Not long ago, credit damage was incredibly difficult, and often impossible to recover in court because judges and juries considered the concrete measurement of the damages to be unrealistic and damages that could be proven were too speculative. Since the 1990’s however, the landscape for credit enforcement claims has changed dramatically. With the FCRA, consumers have legal recourse in order to reclaim incurred damages and even legal fees against inaccurate or improper creditor report tactics. There are numerous types of monetary damages that at one time were considered too difficult or convoluted to calculate that is now available to the victims of credit enforcement error, including damages for emotional distress, humiliation, and damage to financial reputation.
When it comes to your credit, information accuracy is of preeminent importance. Inaccurate information about important aspects of your credit can have potentially devastating consequences.
Any consumer has the right under the Fair Credit Reporting Act to insist that their credit report completely and accurately reflect their credit history and that the report is only viewable by those who are authorized to the information. It is vitally important that a credit report be accurate and up-to-date. The FCRA can provide a civil remedy for consumers who have been harmed by incorrect information and additionally:
- Someone viewed information contained in your credit report without your permission
- Inaccurate information is contained in your credit report
- Unfamiliar debts or accounts
- Any indicators of potential identity theft
- Credit data of another individual contained in your report
- Incorrect information or entries
- Obsolete information of any kind, including old addresses
- Any inaccurate or incorrect entry on the report
Violations of the FCRA
The FCRA was conceived as a legal defense of victim of what could possibly be inaccurate or irrefutable practices by credit reporting agencies, or other entities reporting information regarding your credit.
The FCRA contains regulations to enforce accuracy in the reporting of financial information, limits on the use of the information, and provisions regarding background checks and other important aspects regarding debtor rights.
Some of the most common violations against the stipulations of the FCRA involve inaccurate reporting of credit information. If you feel as though you have experienced a violation of your rights, or that the information contained on your credit report is in error, it is important to speak with a qualified attorney as you could be a victim of credit enforcement violation and could have a viable case to receive damages for your suffering.
How to Dispute Inaccurate Information
If you believe that your credit report contains potentially inaccurate information, you can directly contact the credit bureau to request that they conduct a reasonable investigation to determine if the information is in error as well as to record any information in regards to the status of disputed information. Any information found to be fraudulent or in error must be removed from the file within 30 days from the conclusion of the investigation.
The credit bureau is legally required to begin the investigation within 5 days from submission of the request. During the investigation, the credit bureau will notify the creditor or another account holder about the dispute.
Deleted information from your credit report can be returned, but only if the creditor certifies that the information is complete and accurate. You additionally must be notified of any returned information within 5 days, and have the right to add a statement to the file contesting the accuracy or completion of any disputed information.
Credit Enforcement Claims Attorneys in Miami
Keeping up with credit report maintenance on your own can be a difficult ordeal, and often times it is necessary to bring in a legal professional’s assistance to aid you in getting things removed or ensuring that your credit report is accurate.
The credit enforcement claims attorneys of the Law Offices of Paul A. Humbert P.L., have achieved successful outcomes in many cases of this nature for our clients. Please contact us today for a consultation on credit enforcement claims and information regarding legal recourse for inaccurate credit reporting.