Where Should I Send Credit Report Disputes?
The Fair Credit Reporting Act gives you the right to an accurate and complete credit report. If you find outdated, incomplete, or inaccurate information on your credit report, you have the right to dispute it and have it removed or updated.
Options for Disputing Credit Report Information
You have two options for disputing credit report information.
You can dispute with the credit bureau, which is the company responsible for compiling your credit report based on information received from your creditors. Or, you can dispute directly with the creditor or business who provided the information to the credit bureaus.
Start by disputing with the credit bureau, then if the credit bureau doesn't remove or update the information in your favor, you can follow up with a dispute to the creditor who provided the information.
Disputing With a Credit Bureau
You can dispute credit report information directly with the credit bureau either online or by mail.
To initiate an online dispute, you must first order a credit report. After ordering your credit report online either through AnnualCreditReport.com or the credit bureau's website, you can dispute inaccurate information directly on the credit bureau's website - Equifax.com, Experian.com, or TransUnion.com. Each credit bureau should provide a way to upload, fax, or email documentation supporting your dispute, e.g. copy of a canceled check showing that you made a payment on time.
When you dispute online, note the date you submitted your dispute so you can follow up with the credit bureau if it doesn't provide a response within the necessary timeframe. Print a copy of any confirmation the credit bureau and keep it for your records.
To dispute by mail, write a credit report dispute letter explaining the error. Send your letter to the credit bureau who provided the report that contains the error - all three credit bureaus if all three of your credit reports contain the error. Here are the mailing addresses for each credit bureau:
P.O. Box 7404256
Atlanta, GA 30374-0256
P.O. Box 9701
Allen, TX 75013
P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19022-2000
When you send credit report disputes, you should also send copies of proof you have to support your claim. Keep the original documents for your own records.
Send your dispute via certified mail, so you're able to track your letter and make sure the credit bureau responds in a timely manner. The credit bureau has between 30 to 45 days to respond to your dispute letting you know the result of their investigation.
Disputing With an Information Provider
When you dispute with the credit issuer who provided the information to the credit reporting companies, the process is much the same as disputing with the credit bureau. Write a letter that indicates the error you found and explain why that information is inaccurate. Again, if you have proof that supports your claim, send copies of it.
You can find an address for the business by looking at a recent billing statement. Make sure you look at the address that's meant for correspondence; it is usually different from the address where you send payments. If you can't find an address, or you no longer have billing statements, call the company and ask for the correct address for sending correspondence.
The information provider is required to do an investigation, just like the credit bureaus, and update your credit report if the information is indeed an error.