Do You Even Know What's On Your Credit Score?
It's time to find out!
If you have ever had an adverse account show up on your credit report; you realize how challenging it can be at times to work with the Credit Reporting Agencies. Contacting the credit reporting agency is only the first step in resolution, but getting a positive result may take some additional work. There are several things that you should know about the credit reporting agencies that will assist you in having the desired outcome and make the entire process much easier for you.
Top 3 Credit Bureaus
Credit Fraud Alerts
The only time that the three credit reporting companies work together is if you have been a victim of fraud. All you need to do is contact any one of the credit reporting agencies and let them know that you have been a victim of identity theft and ask them to place a Fraud Alert on your credit reports. They will immediately notify the other two agencies. You may contact them by using the following numbers:
This initial alert is good for 90 days, after that time you will need to call back to place an additional alert for seven years and provide documentation of your identity.
Filing Disputes With Credit Reporting Companies
There used to be a time if you needed to dispute some information being reported on your credit report, you had to fill out a form, print, and mail it. With the advancement of computer technology, all you have to do is go online and file a dispute. You can go directly to each credit reporting agencies website and dispute any derogatory information showing on that particular report. Remember, you must file disputes separately for all three agencies to have the information removed from each one. If your initial dispute does not get the desired results, you can provide additional documentation to the credit bureau or write a one hundred word statement explaining what happened.
The Medical Insurance Bureau
The Medical Insurance Bureau is another reporting agency that you need to be aware of. They are mentioned on your credit reports as possible providers of additional information.
The MIB has medical information about individuals that is provided to their insurance company customer base. The information is said to be used to prevent fraud and omission on the part of the individual applying for insurance. The information is coded which gives an indication of your medical issues. The codes also report any hazardous behavior and a bad driving history. You are entitled to one free copy per year of this report as well, thanks to the Fair and Accurate Transactions Act (FACTA).
Co-signing and Joint Accounts Can Effect Your Credit
Why You Need To Check Your Credit Rating
Credit Reporting Agencies are in place to help creditors figure out if you are a good credit risk. By knowing some simple facts about the agencies you can ensure that your credit is always being reported correctly. Once a year order all three reports, order your MIB, file disputes online as needed, and understand the consequences of co-signing for someone or having a joint account. This information can help you to become well on your way to establishing and maintaining great credit.