The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) was put in place to protect consumers against the misreporting and misuse of credit information. If collectors, creditors, or credit reporting agencies fail to adhere to the FCRA, consumers can take action to prevent harm or receive compensation with the help of a credit repair attorney.
What Is the FCRA?
The FCRA concerns the overall behavior of consumer reporting agencies (CRAs), or credit bureaus, along with the businesses or individuals who report information to these CRAs. CRAs must include the necessary information in a credit report, which can determine whether consumers can obtain a job, mortgage, car loan, or an apartment. The FCRA discloses what CRAs and other authorized parties can and can’t do with your credit information.
Common FCRA Violations
There are several types of violations that can cause harm to consumers, including:
Furnishing and Reporting Outdated Information
CRAs and creditors are required to maintain accurate and up-to-date credit information at all times. Failure to do so can violate the FCRA. This can include failure to report that debt was discharged in bankruptcy, reporting old debts as new, reporting an account as active when closed, or reporting overall inaccurate information.
CRAs can sometimes report inaccurate information when they mix files belonging to individuals with a similar background. Cases can include duplicating or combining negative credit information with a stranger who has a similar social security number, failing to distinguish the Jr. or Sr. in a shared surname, mixing the information of people with the same last name or common first names, and mixing or merging credit files of people within the same area with similar names.
Another common violation regards the privacy of consumers. CRAs can only share credit reports to authorized persons such as creditors, utility companies, insurance providers, landlords, or employers with the consumer’s consent. Sharing credit reports with people who fall outside of these groups can result in a privacy violation.
When to Get Help with Credit Repair
These are simply some of the many FCRA violations that CRAs can commit either intentionally or inadvertently. If consumers believe these violations have harmed their credit in any way, they may be entitled to receive compensation by hiring a Las Vegas credit repair attorney, who can guide them through the process.