WHAT IS THE CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU (CFPB)?
In July 2010, Congress passed and President Obama signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Part of this Act created the CFPB which consolidates most Federal consumer financial protection authority into one place. The services of the CFPG became effective on October 22, 2012. The goal of the CFPB is: watch out for American consumers in the market for consumer financial products and services.
HOW CAN THE CFPB HELP YOU WITH CREDIT REPORT PROBLEMS?
The CFPB can help with:
- Consumer reporting agency’s investigations,
- Incorrect credit report information,
- Improper use of a credit report,
- Assistance to get a copy of a credit score or report, and
- Problems with credit monitoring or identify protection services.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO DO?
This step is covered under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). If you are experiencing any problems with your credit report, you should first of all send a letter to the credit bureau in question stating the complaint or error that needs to be addressed or resolved. You must include copies of supporting documents as well as your complete name and address, and your letter should clearly identify each item in dispute. You must request that the information be removed or corrected. Send the letter by certified mail, ‘return receipt requested,’ so you can document that the credit bureau received the letter.
TIP: Include a copy of the credit report with the error highlighted or circled and keep a copy of the letter and supporting documents.
If the credit bureau deems your complaint as legitimate, they have 30 days to investigate. They must also forward the information you provide about the inaccuracy to the organization that provided the information. The information provider must investigate, review the relevant information, and report the results back to the credit bureau. If the information provider finds the disputed information is inaccurate, it must notify all the credit bureaus so they can correct the information they have in your file.
When the investigation is complete, the credit bureau must give you the results in writing and a free copy of your report if the dispute results in a change to your credit report. This free credit report does not count as your annual free report. If an item is changed or deleted, the credit bureau cannot put the disputed information back in your file unless the information provider verifies it is accurate and complete. The credit bureau also must send you written notice that includes the name, address, and phone number of the information provider.
If you wish, you can request that the credit bureau send notices of any corrections to anyone who received your credit report in the past six months. You can have a corrected copy of your report sent to anyone who received a copy during the past two years for employment purposes.
If the investigation doesn’t resolve your dispute or problem, you can ask that a statement of the dispute be included in your file and in future reports. You also can ask the credit bureau to provide your statement to anyone who received a copy of your report in the recent past. You can expect to pay a fee for this service.
A credit bureau can report negative but correct information for seven years and bankruptcy information for 10 years. There is no time limit for reporting criminal conviction; information reported in response to your application for a job that pays more than $75,000 a year; and information reported because you’ve applied for more than $150,000 worth of credit or life insurance. In general the seven-year reporting period runs from the date that the event took place.
WHAT IF THE PROBLEM IS NOT FIXED?
If the problem is not resolved, you can:
- Contact the CFPB at 1-855-411-2372 or TTY/TDD 1-855-729-2372;
- File a complaint with the CFPB at http://www.consumerfinance.gov/blog/headline-now-accepting-credit-reporting-complaints/ ;
- Send a letter to Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, P. O. Box 4503, Iowa City, Iowa 52244.
You may also enjoy reading our previous blog post, “Rebuilding Credit After a Short Sale” en español: “Mejorando El Credito Despues De Una Ejecución De Hipoteca O Venta Corta”
If you are a homeowner living in San Jose or Sunnyvale and are struggling with your mortgage, please contact ForeclosureHelpSCC, a program funded by the City of San Jose and the City of Sunnyvale at (408)-293-6000 or visit our website: www.foreclosurehelpscc.org. Our HUD-approved counselors can help you evaluate your options, learn more about federal and state programs that may help you with your mortgage issues, and will help you create a plan forward.
Please note: All content included in the ForeclosureHelpSCC blog is provided for information only and should NOT be considered legal or tax advice. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us on our hotline: (408)-293-6000, or visit our website: www.foreclosurehelpscc.org or send us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Si usted es dueño de una casa en San José o en Sunnyvale y están luchando con su hipoteca, por favor póngase en contacto con ForeclosureHelpSCC, un programa financiado por la ciudad de San José y la ciudad de Sunnyvale, al (408) -293- 6000, o visite nuestro sitio: www.foreclosurehelpscc.org. Nuestros consejeros aprobados por HUD puede ayudarle a evaluar sus opciones, aprender más acerca de los programas federales y estatales que pueden ayudarle con sus problemas de hipoteca, y le ayudará a crear un plan para seguir.
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