Your FCRA rights: The legal force behind every credit card consumer

Duran Mueller
Aug 1, 2007
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FCRA stands for Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990 which, was specially designed to make sure that every consumer reporting agency acts in a fair and impartial manner and respects the consumer's right to privacy while preparing their consumer reports. FCRA grants extensive rights to consumers in USA. Here is a summary of these rights.

Every consumer in USA has a right to get his disputes investigated. The FCRA directs all credit bureaus to investigate such disputes, within 30 days. The credit bureau has to contact the creditor, any collection agency or institution that provided the disputed information. The law requires that the information provider should investigate the matter and report the findings back to the credit bureau.

In case the information provider finds that the dispute is correct and the information was wrong, he will have to notify the same to all the credit bureaus, not just the one which initiated the dispute enquiry. This is to ensure that any such dispute if present is corrected across all credit bureaus. This disputed information has to be deleted from your credit report.

After any investigation of dispute by the credit bureau, all its findings must be presented to you- the consumer in the form of a written report. This report must accompany any corrections made to your credit report due to the dispute investigation.

In case the dispute is not settled the way you want, the credit bureau will allow you to insert a statement -100 words in length, in your credit report to present your take on the concerned dispute.

If by any means, during the investigation of dispute the creditor, financial institution or collection agency breaches trust by providing inaccurate information or by not responding to the dispute, you can sue that agency in state or federal court.

In addition to it this law also makes it mandatory for all the three major credit reporting agencies to supply a free copy of your credit report each year when asked to do so.

Checking out your credit reports and monthly credit card statements regularly is a good way to find out any discrepancies, that can negatively affect your credit ratings.