Debt Relief Lawyers
Free Initial Evaluation 888.301.0584

Disputing Credit Reporting Errors

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) describes the procedure that must be followed by both the consumer and the credit reporting agency (CRA) when an error has been identified in a credit report. This article will discuss the error dispute process and what the consumer and credit reporting agency must do during the process.

Submitting Disputes To The CRA

The consumer must submit a dispute to the CRA that reports the incorrect information. Disputes may be submitted using a few different methods: mail, phone, or online. Each method may be used to submit the dispute; however, some of these methods have disadvantages that might affect the dispute's success.


Submission by telephone does not allow the consumer to keep a record of their dispute. It is important to retain records regarding the dispute in case further legal action needs to be taken. The court will require evidence of the dispute as well as the information provided to the CRA. Without that information, the consumer's chances of success in the dispute will be reduced.

Additionally, submitting a dispute by telephone does not allow the consumer to send documents or other evidence that supports their dispute. Providing further supporting evidence improves chances of success with the CRA, or if necessary, a jury. While submitting by phone can hurt chances of success, calling the CRA to follow up on their dispute can help the consumer’s case. If the consumer chooses to follow up on their dispute via telephone, it is vital to record the call, take notes about the call, and keep a call log.


Submitting a dispute online might appear to be more convenient than submitting by mail; however, submitting online presents further issues which may hurt dispute success, like lack of documentation and access to dispute materials.

When submitting a dispute online, CRAs will allow the consumer to access their dispute materials, but only for a limited time. After the time expires, consumers generally will be unable to access the information on their own.

Lack of access to dispute information and credit file disclosures may set back the dispute process, especially if the consumer has chosen to seek legal action. Dispute information and documentation are vital as evidence to a consumer's case, and relying on online access to that information may substantially limit their chances of success in court.

In addition, consumers submitting online might accidentally waive certain legal rights that they are entitled to in disputes. Consumers may encounter circumstances where they will be asked to supply a response to move forward in the online submission process. These responses might involve consumers waiving rights, like the right to a jury trial in a CRA dispute. If not closely read, the consumer may accidentally waive rights they are entitled to, reducing their chances of success.


The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) suggests that consumers submit disputes in writing. Submitting via writing allows the consumer to keep a record of the dispute process should further legal action be required. Along with the CRA’s dispute form, the consumer should include a letter explaining what they think is the issue and copies of documents supporting the dispute. The dispute letter should request that the credit bureau remove or correct inaccurate or incorrect information and include:

  • Name and address
  • The incorrect information the consumer wants to be fixed or removed
  • Copies of original documents supporting the dispute
  • Copy of the consumer’s credit report with disputed issues highlighted

The FTC suggests using certified mail and paying for a return receipt, so the consumer will know when the credit reporting agency has received their dispute. The consumer should keep copies of dispute materials and correspondence they receive about the dispute, even after the dispute has been resolved by the CRA or in court. The FTC has resources on its website to help consumers, including the contact information for the major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, TransUnion), links to bureaus’ dispute processes and dispute forms, and a sample dispute letter form.

Next Steps After Filing A Dispute

The credit bureau has 30 days to investigate the dispute. The credit bureau will provide the evidence submitted to the business that provided the incorrect information. If the business determines that the information is inaccurate, it must notify the major credit bureaus so they can update their reports. The bureau must deliver the results in writing and provide a free credit report. Once an investigation is complete, the bureau must send correction notices to everyone who received the incorrect report along with the correction.

Hiring An FCRA Attorney In New York

If you have credit disputes that have not been resolved, it is important to act quickly to address those issues. Law Office of Simon Goldenberg’s skilled consumer protection lawyers can help you with your situation. For a free case analysis, reach out to Law Office of Simon Goldenberg by calling (888) 301-0584 or contacting us online today.