In the United States, three credit reporting agencies hold the keys to your credit report. They may be powerful, but they aren’t unapproachable.
In fact, one agency, TransUnion, makes it easy to dispute errors on your credit report. You can dispute your credit report at TransUnion with these four simple steps.
Step One: Identify Errors
Most people don’t watch their credit history even though they can track it for free.
Both services allow you to see how you’re using credit. They also give you the power to catch errors in your credit report.
For example, I have a credit card with a $7300 credit limit. TransUnion only reported a credit limit of $5000.
A lower reported limit may hurt my credit utilization and drag down my credit score. I wanted to dispute the reported credit card limit.
You can also use CreditKarma to catch negative information.
Negative information includes repossessions, accounts in collections, late payments, and more.
If the negative information you see is accurate, you can take steps to fix your credit.
Don’t dispute the accurate information.
On the other hand, if you spot an error, you should dispute it.
Before you dispute an error with TransUnion, get a copy of your complete TransUnion Credit Report from AnnualCreditReport.com.
If you need a guide to pulling a credit report, watch this 4 minute video.
You want to see evidence of the error on your report.
Step Two: Initiate Dispute
Once you confirm an error, TransUnion makes it easy to dispute online.
First, go to TransUnion’s online dispute portal.
Do not use a Chrome Browser to start a dispute. You cannot upload documents to TransUnion’s site using Chrome.
If you don’t have a user account at TransUnion, you’ll need to register. You will have to provide your address, your social security number and more.
You’ll also have to confirm a few questions about your address, debt and more. TransUnion asks these questions to keep your identity secure.
Before TransUnion allows you to make a dispute, you need to agree to standard terms and conditions.
One of the most important terms is that you agree to be honest and complete. Don’t initiate false disputes.
Once you complete your account, you can initiate a dispute.
TransUnion makes this simple.
In the portal, you’ll see all your personal information (which you can dispute). You’ll also see every account.
Find the account with the error, and choose “Request an Investigation.”
TransUnion gives you a variety of reasons that you can dispute accounts.
These are the most common reasons you might dispute accounts.
Choose one of these reasons, then select continue.
You can dispute many accounts with a single investigation.
Step Three: Submit Documents
After you select a reason, TransUnion gives you the option to make a defense. The online portal only allows 250 Characters. However, they also give you an option to upload documents.
If possible, include any documentation that helps makes your case. Statements from your bank or correspondence from creditors help a lot. Identity Theft affadavits or police reports might prove necessary too.
If you forget to upload the documents, or you can’t scan them all, TransUnion allows you to mail copies to:
P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19016
Include your File Number when you mail documents. Not sure what your file number is? You’ll see it on the top of your account summary when you hit submit.
Step Four: Follow Up
TransUnion has 30 days to investigate disputes, and they will email the results of the investigation to you. During the investigation, a TransUnion agent may reach out to you. If this happens the agent may want more information from you.
You need to walk a fine line when working with credit bureau agents. On one hand, you want to be as helpful as possible to provide information that will clear up errors. On the other hand, the agents need to contact the original source.
If you provide follow up information to agents, use the following line: “This is the information that I have. It’s important to me that you verify the information with the original source.”
If you cannot provide the information that a TransUnion agent wants, tell them, “I don’t have the documentation that you’re requesting. Please ask the original creditor to validate the information.”
Once TransUnion completes an investigation, they will email you the results. You can access them instantly online.
Altogether, TransUnion’s online dispute process can take as little as 15 minutes.
If you see an error in your report, get it fixed!