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Terri123

Trying to Remove Incorrect Item From Credit Reports

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I am trying to remove an item which I sincerely believe to be incorrect on my credit reports for Experian and TransUnion. 

 

Experian:

At the end of July I sent a letter disputing an item on my credit report.  Experian immediately sent me a letter (dated August 8th) stating they had reviewed the documentation I sent them and had determined they are not able to to make changes.  The letter stated Experian will contact the furnisher and let me know after 30 to 45 days.  They sent me a copy of my credit report dated August 10th.  On one page of the report is a section titled Dispute Results.  It states: "We have completed the processing of your dispute(s).  Here are the results:  (here they list the credit item I was disputing and the outcome).  Outcome: UPDATED.  All they did was add another name to the account (Joint Responsibility With: two names other than mine now appear)

 

I sent them a method of verification letter, which they received on August 25th.  

 

TransUnion:

At the end of July I sent a letter disputing an item on my credit report.  TransUnion sent me a letter (dated August 20) stating they would 'look into the matter).  Strangely that letter was sent to me after the letter dated August 5th stating the investigation is now complete and the results were "verified, no change"

 

A method of verification letter went out to them on August 13th which is date stamped as received on August 17th. 

 

Question:  What do I do now

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I forgot to add that for Experian, the status says: Past due as of Aug 2015.  Does that mean they are re-aging this account?  I have no knowledge of this account at all.  It says Date Opened: May 2013 and First Reported: August 2013.  So if it is past due as of August 2015, it seems as though they are saying it is late as of August 2015.  What should I do?

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I would wait until about 20-30 days after they have received your MOV letters, then I would pull new copies of my reports again. If nothing has changed at that point, I would file an arbitration claim.

Usually, I find that they will respond to my MOV letters within the required 15 days, but it will just be a generic form letter describing how they normaly handle disputes. However, if I check my reports a few days later, I have found the accounts in question have been quietly removed.

If they remain, I know TransUnion has AAA in their user agreements. I know that the agreement requires a 30 day notice to them before opening a AAA claim. I have found that sending a notice of intent to arbitrate and letting them know why they have violated the FCRA will return good results which can include a $1k bonus check to you along with removal of incorrect information.

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@Terri123

 

They are not reaging the account.  The 7-year reporting period is based upon the "date of first delinquency" that was reported by the OC. 

 

I have no knowledge of this account at all.  It says Date Opened: May 2013 and First Reported: August 2013.

 

 

What company is reporting?

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@Terri123

 

They are not reaging the account.  The 7-year reporting period is based upon the "date of first delinquency" that was reported by the OC. 

 

 

What company is reporting?

AWA collections.  But it says past due as of Aug 2015, which is incorrect, since that would mean I have been making payments on it and now im not, as of Aug 2015 (which is incorrect). 

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@Terri123

 

Have you already disputed with the CRAs by stating that you have no knowledge of the account?

Yes I disputed this to the two CRA's above: TransUnion and Experian.  I have not sent a letter to AWA collections, which, by the way is not the original creditor.  Two Jinn Inc. is shown as the original creditor.  I am wondering if there is a benefit to sending them a letter as well.  If not, I guess I will continue to send letters to TransUnion and Experian until they remove the incorrect information.  I just sent the requests for method of verification to both companies.  I feel like I should be proactively doing something while waiting for them to respond to the request.  So far I have been given no proof that this debt belongs to me.  All I was given was a letter from TransUnion saying they  "validated the debt." and a credit report from Experian saying they "updated" the item but would not be removing it.

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@Terri123

 

Did you ever have an account with Two Jinn, Inc?

I had never heard of the name so I googled it. It looks like a bail bond company.  I helped to bail my nephew out around the year 2000 I believe.  I think it was for petty theft.  I never have bailed out anyone else since.  This is something that happened fairly recently it seems.  At first I thought this was for some kind of credit card.  This definitely is not my debt. 

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@Terri123

 

I know you disputed the collection agency's entry with the CRAs,  If you haven't disputed Two Jinn's with the CRAs, you need to.  If it comes back verified, I would send a certified letter to both companies stating that you found their entries on your CR, it is not your debt, and it should not be on your CR.   See what happens after that.

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How long do these companies (Two Jinn and AWA have to respond to my request to remove the information?  If they try to ignore me or keep it on my credit report what is my next step?   Isn't this what the credit reporting agency is supposed to do: validate the debt and take it off if it can't be validated?  I'm frustrated because I feel that the CRA is the one who is supposed to be contacting these companies and sending me proof that it is my debt.  What about calling TransUnion or Experian?  Should I call them or just keep communication in writing? 

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@Terri123

 

All the CRAs have to do is conduct a "reasonable investigation".  That term is not strictly defined.   There is no requirement in the FCRA that the CRAs have to send you proof that it's your debt.  That's not their job.   You can send them a request for their method of verification of the entries.

 

Once you've heard back from the CRAs, and since you've disputed the entries of both the debt collector and Two Jinn, I'd send the debt collector and Two Jinn a letter as I suggested in post #10. 

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@Terri123

 

I know that it's frustrating.  :-)

 

The CRAs only report what's provided to them by the furnishers (Two Jinn and the debt collector).  While they have to make sure the information is accurate, they have nothing to do with validating a debt.  Right now, your argument is with the furnishers.

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@BV80 The FCRA does not require that the furnisher be sent a dispute.  It only requires that a dispute be investigated by the CRA.  Once the CRA verifies the account and inaccurate information remains, then you have a right of action for FCRA violations.

 

If this were me, I would go after the CA for FCRA and FDCPA violations after two reasonable investiagtions by the CRA at my request.

 

The OC I may approach differently depending on the type and amount of debt and whether there is an arbitration clause or not.

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@fisthardcheese

 

I know that the FCRA doesn't require that the furnisher be sent a dispute.  

 

The OP doesn't recognize the account.   Just because he doesn't recognize the account doesn't mean he doesn't owe it.  He first needs to find out about the account just to make sure.

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Ok. I will be sending a letter to both Credit Reporting Agencies quoting possible violations since they have not responded to my request for method of validation.  I will request investigation one last time then start looking for legal help.   I will also send a letter to the original creditor to find out more about this debt, though I feel I might start getting phone calls and letters from this company asking for payment even though this debt isn't mine.  I'm trying to think of any way this could possibly be my debt and as far as I know, I absolutely don't owe this money.

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@Terri123

 

There is no "method of validation".  You're thinking of the "method of verification".  All that tells the credit reporting agencies to do is to tell you how they verified the entries on your CR.  That would basically mean that they contacted the furnishers to make sure the information in the entries was correct.

 

Unless you know for a fact that the account is not yours, then you don't know if it's being reported correctly or not.  First you need to make sure it's not your account.

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I'm curious how the or why should this consumer deal with any form arbitration with the CRA when you lose a lot of your rights in that type of arbitration instead of taking them to court and attempting some type of settlement agreement and maintaining all your rights.I wasn't aware of this process with TransUnion so I looked it up and don't think this is the best route to take. So maybe you can explain this better for me and explain your experience with this arbitration and why would TransUnion be so reluctant to do this since they  require it in their contract.

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I'm curious how the or why should this consumer deal with any form arbitration with the CRA when you lose a lot of your rights in that type of arbitration instead of taking them to court and attempting some type of settlement agreement and maintaining all your rights.I wasn't aware of this process with TransUnion so I looked it up and don't think this is the best route to take. So maybe you can explain this better for me and explain your experience with this arbitration and why would TransUnion be so reluctant to do this since they  require it in their contract.

 

What rights do you lose by filing an arbitration claim?

 

Using arbitration against a CRA is a matter of simple logic for me.  In the case of TU is costs nothing (their agreement says they pay the consumer's $200 filing fee for AAA) and arbitration is much easier than court where simply making a proceedural mistake due to not knowing all of the rules can get your case tossed out.  Additionally, in my state, the filing fee for federal court is $450.  All I have to do is send a letter to TU demanding arbitraiton and giving them the mandatory 30 days notice per their contract before I file in AAA.  9 times out of 10, that letter will deliver results in the form of TL removal and a check to me.  The entire process by demanding arbitration take about 60 days from sending my letter to cashing my check.  Whereas filing a claim in federal court for FCRA violations has taken me 6 months on the short end to get a settlement check in my hands - and that was with no real court action and a settlement before discovery even started.

 

The CRA does not want to spend $5k+ (not to mention costs of traveling to me for a hearing and their attorney fees) to arbitrate a claim when they can send $1k to me and delete TL instead and be done with it.

 

Simple, easy and effective.  And no rights are lost.

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I see what you are saying. just a little more for clarity.does this have anything to do with the plus agreement for maybe thats where my confusion is coming from , which you become a plus member and you have to sign this arbitration agreement and you have 60 days to opp out , you can't do any kind of class action etc.Can any average consumer do this arbitration with no strings attached?

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OP does not have a class action.  99.9% of consumers will never have a class action to take against a CRA or any other company.  However, the arbitration agreements can be used very well in an individual claim as I laid out above.

 

TransUnion has a user agreement that contains arbitration which covers anyone who has ever ordered their reports from them.  This would include the free annual credit report, as that site sends you to transunion's website to order your report at a sum of $0.  Your order means your are agreeing to the TU terms of service.  I don't have time to look it up now, but I have a copy at home.  There are also different agreements that cover their paid services such as TU Plus and other monitoring services.  The arb agreements are all essentially the same.

 

 

.Can any average consumer do this arbitration with no strings attached?

 

Yes, just as I have done many times (see my signature, or my specific details in my previous reply).

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I was browsing the threads on this site and came across:

Disputing Charge Off accounts with CRA

Everyone who responded to this person's thread told him (her?) to not try to validate the debt with the original creditor because it might 'wake a sleeping giant' and they are not required to send the person copies of any contracts or even validate the debt unless they have initiated a lawsuit.  I am now confused about sending the original creditor and purchaser of the debt a request for validation.  If it is true that they don't have to send me proof that it is my debt, why bother?  Please advise.  Thanks. 

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@Terri123

 

There is no "validation" involved in credit reporting.  That term refers to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), not the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).    A validation request is sent to a debt collector when you receive its first debt collection letter that contains the 30-day notice in 1692g(a) of the FDCPA.  That is the only time a validation request is valid.

 

When finding an account entry on your credit report, you dispute with the credit reporting agencies (CRAs).  The CRAs then contact the business that has furnished the entry in order to verify that the information in the entry is accurate.  If that information is verified, you can choose to contact the furnisher and dispute the entry again, but the furnisher is not required to produce documentation.

 

If you know that certain information in an account entry on your CR is incorrect, the purpose of disputing is to get that information corrected or removed.  If you don't know whether the information is correct or not, you can dispute it, but if it's verified and nothing is changed, you have to do your research (checking your bank records, etc.). 

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