TransUnion Dispute – How To Dispute TransUnion Credit Report
The purpose of this article is to share exactly, step by step, how to exercise your consumer rights to file a TransUnion dispute and remove dings, errors, and questionable listings from your credit report. First, we need to share the legislation that empowers you to do this and that’s the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).
This legislation was originally passed in 1970 and with the intention of giving regular, average, everyday consumer’s the ability to remove errors on their credit reports. And with good reason, according to an eight year Federal Trade Commission (FTC) study, over 40 million American’s have errors on their credit report’s.
In other words, one in five American’s has an error on their credit reports. And one in 10 American’s have an error that’s serious enough to be damaging their credit score.
You see those dings, errors, and derogatory credit report items are the cause of a bad credit score. This is what damages and drags most folks credit score down. FICO the company responsible for calculating consumer credit score, based upon the information contained on your three credit reports with TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian.
Anthony Sprauve the FICO spokesman says a mere debt collection listing, one of the most common types of bad credit, can damage your score by up to 100 points. For this reason it’s mission critical to clean up your credit report dings, derogatory items, and errors, so you can achieve a score truly representative of your credit worthiness.
You can dispute TransUnion online by visiting https://dispute.transunion.com. If you choose this option you’ll be notified of the results of your dispute via email.
You can also file your TransUnion dispute over the phone by calling 1-800-916-8800 from 8 am to 11 pm, Monday through Friday. You’ll need a copy of your TransUnion credit report and the File Identification Number it contains. You’ll be notified of your results by mail with this avenue.
You can additionally file your TransUnion dispute by old fashioned snail mail. This is what the FTC recommends in an article, and you’ll be notified of your results by mail. This will require you to create and mail a credit dispute letter to:
Consumer Dispute Center
Chester, PA 19022
You’ll need the following information in order to complete your dispute: Social Security Number, date of birth, current address, your TransUnion file number, company name of the disputed item, account number of disputed item, and the reason for your dispute. Much of this information is contained on your TransUnion report, and a few example reasons include: not your account, account is paid, item is an error, etc.
How TransUnion Dispute Process Works
In accordance with the FCRA, TransUnion is required to investigate consumer dispute requests by contacting the data furnisher. This is the original lender, creditor, or company that’s reporting the information you’re disputing.
TransUnion is going to request verification of your account with the data furnisher. Along with pertinent details such as the balance, dates of activity, etc.
If your account is not verified then by law it must be removed from your credit report. If however your account is verified then it can be updated with accurate information and will remain on your credit report.
You’ll be notified of the TransUnion investigation results either by mail or by email, depending upon your method of dispute. The investigation typically occurs within 30 days and on some occasions may take up to 45 days to complete.
Sounds easy, right? Yet on a recent 60 Minutes story they exposed just how challenging the credit bureau dispute process is for consumers. Steve Kroft went on to say: “it’s extremely unlikely that anyone with the authority to resolve your dispute will ever actually see it.”
Moreover Mike DeWine, Ohio’s Attorney General, says “they’re not doing an investigation at all” about the credit bureaus. And this is in direct violation of federal law, legislation, and the FCRA.
The reason the credit bureaus don’t appear to be very interested in ensuring the accuracy of information on consumer’s credit reports, nor fixing credit report errors, is simply dollars and cents. You see the credit bureaus must spend money investigating consumer disputes.
Contrary to popular belief, the credit bureaus are private for profit businesses. And while this is estimated to be a $4 billion a year industry, two of the credit bureaus have stock holders to answer too.
It gets worse because for some unfathomable reason in the past, our politicians decided to give the credit bureaus the authority to first decide if a consumer dispute is valid or invalid. Only on valid disputes, will the credit bureaus then spend money conducting an investigation.
This is why you’re virtually guaranteed to have your dispute found invalid. Typically you’ll receive notification requesting additional information.
This is done with the purpose of frustrating you, in hopes you’ll just give up and live with a bad credit history. Evidence of this can be seen by the many FTC fines issued to all three credit bureaus collectively for violating consumer rights.
The most shocking example of this occurred when the FTC required the credit bureaus to set up toll-free phone numbers to handle consumer disputes. Yet, they neglected to have staff members actually answer these phones.
There’s consumer reports claiming to have spent over 30 hours on hold. And yes, the FTC did step in again and fine all three credit bureaus collectively over $1 million. Which critics claim isn’t even a drop in the bucket for this $4 billion a year industry.
This system of bureaucratic red tape, stall tactics, and frustration has led some consumers to sue the credit bureaus. The most notable is Julie Miller who recently won a lawsuit for $18.6 million against Equifax. This was because they wouldn’t clear credit report errors that were very obvious and clearly apparent.
This has given rise to professional, legal, and legitimate credit repair companies. Think about how often you’ve heard it’s impossible to remove so called accurate bad credit from your credit report?
Or that it’s illegal to dispute an item you know to be accurate? As if there’s some credit bureau SWAT team breaking down people’s front door in the middle of the night.
Listen, every last alphabet soup law you hear about is passed for your protection, the consumer. The government ain’t passing any laws to help the credit bureaus.
Moreover you’re simply exercising your rights as a consumer when you dispute any item on your credit report. And according to legislation you can dispute items on credit report files, so long as you believe it’s inaccurate, questionable, or made in error.
The FCRA says the maximum amount of time an item can legally remain on your credit report is for seven long, expensive, and embarrassing years. The only exception being some types of bankruptcy.
But, there is no minimum amount of time an item must remain on your credit report. In other words, you don’t just have to live with bad credit for seven years, you can frequently clean up credit report listings much sooner. This is how to improve your credit score, by removing the listings that are damaging it.
We encourage our members to consider professional credit repair help. In 2016 alone, over 9 million negative items were successfully removed from consumer’s credit reports. This includes late payments, judgements, charge offs, collections, liens, and many more.
Get a free credit consultation with a certified FICO professional today, by calling toll-free 1-877-418-7596. For more tips and strategies to repair credit with Dan Willis, sign up for our free newsletter.
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