There are many possible credit report errors such as mixed credit file, a public record error, inaccurate collection amounts, inaccurate employment report, and identity theft.

Credit reporting agencies have a duty to report items on your credit report with maximum possible accuracy. If any credit reporting agency is reporting anything on your credit file inaccurately, the Fair Credit Reporting Act provides for a method of disputing these errors.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) provides that upon receipt of a credit report dispute from a consumer, the agency must conduct a reasonable investigation into your dispute. The Act provides that the agency must:

• Conduct a reasonable investigation into your claims
• As part of the investigation, notify the creditor of your dispute
• Provide the creditor any relevant information that you provided the credit reporting agency as part of your dispute.
• Report back the results of the investigation to you within 30 days of their receipt of your dispute. (If you provide them additional information within that 30 day period, the credit reporting agencies are entitled to an extra 15 days to conduct the investigation.)
• Remove and delete any inaccurate information or information that cannot be verified.
• Also, the credit reporting agencies must provide a notice that, if you request a description of the procedure used to determine the accuracy and completeness of your credit report, it shall be provided to you, and include the business name and address of any furnisher of information contacted as part of the investigation and the telephone number of such furnisher, if reasonably available.
• And - They must provide a notice that you have the right to add a statement to your file disputing the accuracy or completeness of the information.

Providing a proper dispute of your credit report is important to assure that a proper investigation is performed. The better your dispute, the better your consumer rights are protected. Your dispute should:

• Always be in writing, not online.
• Clearly identify who you are - not just by name. Include address, previous address, and social security number.
• State clearly what the dispute is (i.e. the account does not belong to you but another family member, the account was a result of identity theft, the account was paid in full, etc.)
• Provide any documents that support your claim.
• If it is identity theft, obtain a police report and complete an FTC affidavit.
• If you are claiming the pay history is reported incorrectly, then provide proof of payments for that time period where it is in dispute.
• If you have a letter from the creditor, enclose it.
• Do not ramble. You do not need to write a whole story. Identify what is correct clearly and concisely.