Credit Repair: Always a Rip-Off

Jan 27, 2012 by

There is no way to remove accurate, negative information from a credit report.

Once more, with consciousness: There is no way to remove accurate, negative information from a credit report.

Accurate information on your credit report must die a natural death, which usually means the passage of seven years (ten years for bankruptcy). Cyberspace is filled with companies offering to “repair” your credit—for a fee, of course! Here’s what they do:

Credit repair scammers and rip-off artisans exploit a feature of the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act. Following Federal Trade Commission regulations, a scammer will send the credit reporting company a dispute letter for each piece of negative information on your report, claiming the information is inaccurate. The credit reporting company then will ask the provider of the disputed information to validate its data and respond with evidence proving the accuracy of the disputed information.

If the information provider does not respond within 30 days, the credit reporting company must remove the disputed information from your credit report, per the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Responses often take longer than 30 days, so your credit report may improve as some inaccurate information falls off due to tardy responses. The scammer triumphantly presents you with your new, “repaired” report, saying “mission accomplished!”

If any removed information was indeed accurate, when the provider does respond to the credit reporting company with proof, the items will reappear on your credit report. The fee you’ve paid the credit repair scammer has been wasted.

So what if negative information on your credit report truly is inaccurate? It’s easy and free to remove inaccurate, negative information from your credit report. You can do it yourself and save any credit repair fee.

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