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Identifying Errors in Your Experian Credit Report

LawIdentifying Errors in Your Experian Credit Report

Experian credit report errors can cause major issues for you if you don’t take time to correct them. To identify credit report errors, you should first have a firm understanding of exactly what a credit reporting error is especially- Experian errors. Let’s take a look at these. Credit report errors are mistakes and inaccurate information found in your credit report. Consumer reporting agencies (CRAs), (also called credit reporting agencies) or “credit bureaus” usually rely on data furnishers- like banks and lenders to provide them with your credit information. When they supply this information, it can include everything from any on-time payments, missed payments, and your credit profile over the last several years.

Regularly reviewing all of your credit reports is important, especially your Experian credit report since a lot of lenders will use this information when determining if they should extend credit to you. Therefore, it is essential to review your reports with a discerning eye and note any errors. 

Errors can occur for any number of reasons including misspelled names, inaccurate dates, mixed files, reporting you as deceased, and more! It’s imperative that you understand what an Experian report is and the steps on how you – can file an Experian dispute – and get rid of credit errors once and for all!

What is an Experian Credit Report?

There are three major CRAs including Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. Experian credit reports include many of the following sections: 

  • Personal information. This section in an Experian credit report includes your name, Social Security number, your birthday, current and past home addresses, and current and past employers. Mistakes in this section can be anything from a misspelled name to an incorrect date of birth, or wrong Social Security number. Many people tend to overlook this section because it’s personal information and they don’t think this section is as crucial as the others, but that is incorrect. This section is just as important as the other sections in your credit report because any errors found in this section similarly to the other sections, may cause you to forfeit employment as well as confuse your credit profile with someone else’s which can cause your score to decrease. It’s important to review this section closely for any mistakes and to quickly dispute any inaccuracies you find. 
  • Accounts. This section is where you can find your credit accounts which include revolving accounts like credit cards, mortgages, installment loans, and auto loans. It is also in this section where you will find a list of your creditors along with their information including creditors’ names, account numbers, payment history, balances, and account status, which includes past due and current accounts. 
  • Recent Inquiries. This section reviews any recent inquiries for credit. That means, if you’ve applied for credit within the last couple of years, it will be shown in this section. It’s important to spend time reviewing this section to see if there are any hard inquiries you do not recognize. If that is the case, these may be errors or even possibly identity theft if someone has used your information without your consent and you have a right to dispute these.  
  • Public Records.  Your public records will be listed in this section. These include bankruptcies and can sometimes appear on your credit profile for up to ten years. 

 Every section in your Experian credit report is important because each section makes up your credit story. Lenders will review your complete credit story to determine your creditworthiness and whether or not they will extend credit to you. Therefore, it is imperative that your credit story is told accurately, without any discrepancies. If you do find errors in your Experian credit report, you do have options. 

What Should You Do When You Find Errors in Your Experian Credit Report?

When you find an error or inaccuracy in your Experian credit report, be sure to highlight the mistake and prepare for the dispute process.

When you are reviewing your Experian credit report, you may run across some questions or have some concerns. That’s a perfect time to contact consumer protection attorneys who can discuss the error and your circumstances with you. Experienced Consumer Attorneys will review your situation and discuss the next steps with you. If you want to dispute the errors, here are some next steps:

  1.   Get a free copy of your credit report. You can get a free copy of your credit report for all three credit bureaus online. 
  2.   Find errors. Your next step should be spending time finding any inaccuracies and then making a note of those discrepancies. You will use those notes later for your dispute letter. 
  3.   Get documents and forms. After finding the errors in your credit report, you should then find and gather all important files and documents you will need to support your dispute. Important documents can include bank statements and records to prove your identification.
  4.   Contact the consumer reporting agencies. After getting your important paperwork together, you should then contact the credit bureaus. You can contact them online or via mail. Our suggestion is to contact them via mail.
  5.   Dispute via mail. We recommend that you dispute any mistake in writing via certified mail because disputing via certified mail adds an extra layer of protection. When disputing via mail, make sure you include details of all errors and violations, and enclose all your supporting files. You will need to write a detailed letter explaining the errors and why you are disputing them. Experian’s contact information is Experian, P.O. Box 4500 Allen, TX 75013. Be sure to include all relevant information in the dispute letter. If you are not sure what should be included in the letter, you should reach out to trained professionals who can assist you.
  6.   Monitor your disputes closely. Once you dispute the errors, you should not forget about them! You need to continue to monitor the dispute closely until there is a resolution.  
  7.   Contact Consumer Attorneys. Consumer protection attorneys know consumer law and can provide you with sound advice on how to dispute and remove errors! Consumer attorneys can also help you hold Experian and the other credit bureaus accountable for their mistakes. You can contact a consumer lawyer at any point in the dispute process. You do not have to wait until after filing a dispute!

This is just a quick overview of how to kickstart the dispute process. The most important thing to keep in mind is that if you find errors, it’s crucial to act quickly, efficiently, and to get assistance if you need it. You owe it to yourself and your credit future!

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