“To err is human” but any mistake in your financial space can become a huge blunder in your economical run. Similarly, a credit report needs your vigilance to be accurate.
Reviewing and evaluating your credit report on a regular basis should be your priority to keep maintaining your score, and report any possible credit score errors. It is fundamental to any person that he keeps reviewing his credit report on an annual basis which can help him obtain a healthy credit score.
Whenever you notice a drop in your credit score, you need to examine your credit report with a keen eye, as there are some chances that the score dropped due to any delinquent account, or any other possible error that can render your credit report wrong.
Therefore, it becomes important to critically examine your credit report to make sure your credit report is free from potential errors. In order to know more about these errors and the ways to sort this issue, this blog from Carsfast can supplement your knowledge to do so.
Credit score errors
It is important to verify a credit check if you want your credit report free from errors as they can affect your money borrowing process along with affecting your job or insurance, provided your credit report ascertains your creditworthiness. When your credit report is ridden with defaults you never examined, it can affect your overall purchasing power and your chance to get any insurance or a place to live or rent.
When you spot credit score errors in your credit report, your credit scores can be lower than the original score which can not only affect your purchasing power like getting a loan but also affect the interest rates you have to pay. So whenever you come across any credit discrepancy, it is important to take some immediate steps to rectify the mistake which can hurt you in the financial run. This ultimate guide from Carsfast enlisted some steps on how to dispute credit reports in Canada and remove any incorrect information.
Checking all the credit reports from credit report agencies
Equifax and TransUnion are the two major credit bureaus in Canada where you can obtain free weekly credit reports using online sources. Your creditors may or may not report all of your account activity to all the bureaus where there are some chances of inquiring differences in your reports. So, when you check all the reports for errors, you may spot inaccuracies on credit reports, either on one or both of them. Once you come across any negative information in your credit report, you need to dispute the error which can cost nothing.
The potential errors that can hurt your scores include
- Wrong account status for example you paid on time yet it was reported late
- Ex-spouse enlisted on your loan or credit card
- Wrong account numbers or accounts that don’t belong to you
- Negative information that is too old to be reported
- Accounts that you hardly know
- Wrong address
Materials to dispute credit errors
Once you recognize a credit score error, you should aim to make it easy for investigators to confirm your complaint is valid. You need to gather the relevant things related to the type of error as
- Copies of credit card statements
- Copies of loan documents
- Copies of bank statements
- Birth or death certificates or a divorce decree
- If you see any identity theft in your report, include a copy of your FTC complaint
You may need to provide additional documents as well:
- Identity proof
Date of birth
- Social Security number
Any government-issued identification
Utility bill or insurance statement
Disputing credit report errors
The above-mentioned credit bureaus have an online dispute process for the verification of credit scores and rectifying errors, if present. Besides, you can also write a letter to report your dispute, but comparatively, it will take more time than the online process. Each credit bureau has a process to file your dispute:
- Equifax dispute report Canada:
- You can use the Equifax online portal
- You can also write to their P.O. box address
- You can call 866-349-5191 where you can speak to an agent and follow the procedure
- Include your name, address, social security number, date of birth, and reason for your dispute in your dispute letter
- While disputing online, you need to create an account whereupon you need to upload your support materials. Once you are done, you will receive 10 digit confirmation code, where you can check the status of your report anytime.
- TransUnion dispute report
- You can visit the online TransUnion dispute portal
- Write to their P.O. box address
- You can call 800-916-8800 and can get access to the Transunion credit report handy
- If you proceed online, create a new account if you don’t have one and sign in. Choose ‘new investigation” and obtain your credit report where you can click on the edit option and go ahead with “request investigation” to initiate your dispute.
Besides, you need to inform the company that has provided the data to the credit bureaus whenever you file a dispute. It can prevent reporting inaccurate information to the credit bureau in the future.
Reviewing the response to your dispute
You will receive the outcome of your report once the credit bureaus clearly investigate your case which it can generally take up to 30 days. If your dispute is agreed upon, the credit bureau will remove the error and send you a new copy of your credit report, where you can also request the bureau to forward the correction to any agency that received your report from the past 6 months.
However, if the credit bureau disagrees with any pertaining error, they may not change it. To rectify the error you think is genuinely incorrect, you can go ahead with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) where you need to provide a copy of your proof. The CFPB will evaluate your dispute and you can receive updates via email.
Whether the errors pertaining to your credit report are related to identity, accounts, or balance, you need to report your dispute to the credit bureaus. However, if there is any update in your information, it may take at least two months. Besides, always remain vigilant and keep checking your credit scores so that you can quickly initiate any action.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Does checking your credit affect it?
The good news is that checking your credit reports will not affect your credit scores, rather it becomes a way to check your information and ensure that there are no errors pertaining to your credit report. Besides, checking your credit reports on a regular basis is a way to detect any sign of potential identity theft as well.
What does a Canadian credit check show?
The financial information on your credit report should be evaluated with a keen eye to report any potential errors. A credit check will show the credit you use including your credit cards, loans, outstanding balances, foreclosures, missed payments, any bankruptcies, and collection accounts. Besides, your personal information like name, date of birth, address, payments, accounts, etc is also assessed.
What are the red flags on a credit check?
You need to keenly examine your credit report for any error which can affect your financial run. During your credit report check, there are some red flags to be considered as
- Information such as name, address, and Social Security number mixed up
- Unauthorized activity from identity theft
- Having multiple lines of credit
- Missed or late payment
- Wrong account status
- Ex-spouse enlisted
What does a hard credit check reveal?
A hard check on your credit report will reveal your financial history to the lender who can see your record of repaying money that you have borrowed. They can see if there were any late or missed payments, or collection of debt, along with overdue payments. A hard check can lower your credit score as well.
What are the 3 credit checks?
There are three main credit bureau agencies that are licensed that compute your credit scores:
- Equifax: Based in Atlanta, Equifax is one of the market leaders in most countries.
- Experian: Based in Costa Mesa, Experian has become a global information service company.
- TransUnion: The Chicago-based company also collects and maintains consumer credit reports globally.