How to Fix Errors on Your Credit Report

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To be successful in the miles & points hobby, there’s nothing as important as good credit.

That’s why it’s important to monitor your credit report for errors that could negatively impact your credit score.

And correct the errors to make sure you have the best possible credit score!

How To Dispute Credit Report

Your Credit Is Your Golden Ticket Around the World!

I’ll show you how to dispute credit report errors, so you can continue to get Big Travel!

It’s Important to Fix Errors on Your Credit Report!

It is extremely important to keep tabs on your credit.  Especially in the miles & points hobby!  If you have poor credit, banks will deny your application for new cards which means you’ll miss out on lots of BIG Travel with Small Money.

Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, financial institutions like banks and credit bureaus are responsible for providing correct information about financial records.

And if you report any errors, these institutions must correct them.  All you have to do is contact the credit bureau, point out the error to them, and show them why the information is incorrect.

Order Your Annual Credit Report for Free

Link:   Free Annual Credit Report From Top 3 Credit Bureaus

You can view your credit report form Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion by visiting one website.  You can request all 3, or choose the ones you want.

Step 1.   Click “Request Your Credit Reports”

Navigate to AnnualCreditReport.com and click on “Request your credit reports”.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Step 1 – Click the Button at the Bottom of the Page

Step 2.   Input Your Personal Information

Help Annual Credit Report find your file by giving them your personal information, like name, Social Security Number, and addresses for the past 2 years.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Step 2 – Fill Out the Mandatory Form

Step 3.   Choose the Credit Bureaus You Want to View

You can choose 1, 2, or all 3 credit bureaus to view.  Keep in mind, pulling all 3 bureaus will mean you can’t pull them for free for another year.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Step 3 – Select the Credit Bureaus You Want to Pull

Step 4.   Examine Your Credit Report for Items You Want to Dispute

There are buttons at the top of the page to help you find the information you’re looking for.  If you’re looking for items that can damage your credit score, click on “Potentially Negative Items“.  Here you’ll find any negative information you’d like to dispute.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Step 4 – Inspect Your Credit Report for Negative Items

How to Dispute Credit Report Errors

Link:   Experian Dispute Form (Online Only)

Link:   Equifax Dispute Form

Link:   TransUnion Dispute Form

If you’ve examined your credit report and would like to dispute an item, the process is simple.

Credit bureaus like TransUnion allow you to file a dispute online.  But if possible, I recommend sending your dispute with documentation by certified mail with a return receipt (Experian will only accept online submissions).  You’ll still be able to retrieve the results of your dispute online.

Step 1.   Fill Out a Dispute Form

Download a dispute form from the credit bureau that has the negative mark.  Fill it out with the personal information it requests.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Step 1 – Complete the Dispute Form

Step 2.   Add Your Credit Report (With Notes!)

Print your credit report and draw attention to all the areas you’d like to dispute.  Circle and highlight the negative items.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Step 2 – Print Your Credit Report and Mark It Up With Notes

Note:   If you’re disputing with Experian, just press the “Dispute” button to the left of the item, and type your argument into the text box.

How To Dispute Credit Report

Experian Disputes Can Only Be Filed Online. Just Click “Dispute” Next to the Item in Question

Step 3.   Find Documents That Support Your Dispute

If you want to fix your credit report, you’ll have to convince the credit bureaus that your argument is valid!  Find documents that support your claim and attach them to your credit report.

For example, if your credit report shows you’ve missed 2 payments on a credit card, print those statements showing your payment.

Step 4.   Write a Letter Explaining Your Disputes

Write a letter identifying each item you’re disputing, and explaining why you feel it should be changed.

Here is a good sample dispute letter to help you get started.  It should look something like this:

Hello,

I am writing to dispute the following information in my file. I have circled the items I dispute on the attached copy of the report I received.

The following Citi credit card account is displaying inaccurate information.  My file shows I have made 2 late payments, but I have never missed a payment.  I am requesting that the item be removed to correct the information.

Enclosed are copies of my account statements on the corresponding dates to support my position. Please reinvestigate these matters and correct the disputed items as soon as possible.

Sincerely,
Daraius Dubash

Enclosures: Account statements from May 2016 and July 2016

Remember to include your name, address, city, state, zip code, and the date.

Step 5.   Send Your Letter by Certified Mail With a Return Receipt

Send your letter by certified mail with a return receipt request.  That way you’ll know the credit bureau received your documents!

The credit bureau will then investigate your dispute, usually within 30 days.

Note:   Make sure any documents you send the credit bureaus are not the only available copies!  Send duplicates, and keep the original documents for yourself.  You might need them later!

These steps should resolve any problems you have on your credit report.  There are agencies available to help you, like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which enforces “federal consumer financial laws” and helps protect you as a consumer.  It tries to keep the financial institutions honest!

Bottom Line

If you haven’t looked at your credit score in a while, it’s worth the time and effort!  There could be errors on your credit report that are affecting your credit score.  And you must have a good credit score to be successful in the miles & points hobby.

In order to submit a dispute, you’ll need to:

  • Fill out a credit bureau dispute form
  • Print your credit report and circle the errors
  • Attach documents that support your dispute
  • Write a letter to the credit bureau explaining the errors
  • Send your documents by certified mail with a return receipt, so you know they received your letter

That’s it!  The credit bureau will investigate your claim, usually within 30 days!

Have you had success removing errors from your credit report?  Let me know in the comments!

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4 responses to “How to Fix Errors on Your Credit Report

  1. Marriott Marty

    @D a better strategy is to write the creditor first disputing the debt (at least in part) if possible.Then if a third party creditor continues to report the alleged debt as undisputed it will be a violation of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act and the creditor will owe a mandatory award if attorneys fees and statutory damages if $1,000 under Federal law and possibly additional remedies under state law (like California). If you dispute first via the credit reports then the credit reports will say consumer disputes debt and it will be impossible for the creditor to violate the FDCPA (if a third party collector like a collection company). See 15 USC 1692e(8)…

  2. A quick and easy way to improve your credit score is to pay your total balance the day before the closing date on your credit card. Don’t wait for the monthly bill to arrive – the credit score you receive is based on the balance outstanding at the closing date, and if that balance is zero, you get a better score than if there is an outstanding amount, even if you normally pay the total balance before the due date every month.

  3. My wife and I have had a perfectly paid balance in advance for 30 years without error. We have very high credit scores. Recently we submitted a credit card app for my wife and she was rejected, with explanation concerning a “delinquent” account. When I called to investigate it turns out that it was on a very small balance for a card I keep active by spending a little every six months. Without my permission or request they had changed the account to “online” no bill payment, so I never saw the bill. I called and paid it at once and requested they correct this on my wife’s credit report. This has taken lots of effort to correct, not sure if we’ve accomplished it yet and so far I am working only on Transunion. Do I need to contact the other two agencies?