Free Credit Reports

Free Credit Reports How to get Free Credit Reports

A credit report gives information on an individual's location, how the individual pays bills, record of lawsuits and arrests, and any history of bankruptcy. Credit reports can be used by businesses, employers, creditors, insurers, as a means of evaluation for various things such as employment, credit, or housing. The credit report contains three different reports from the three major credit bureaus.

Looking at a free credit report can help improve the chances affect getting a job or a loan at a certain percent of internet. Free credit reports can show an individual what their credit score is and how it can be improved.

Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, everyone is entitled to free credit reports once a year. This law was created in order to provide individuals with a free copy annually of their credit report upon request, making them more aware of their financial position. Free credit reports can be obtained by providing a name, date of birth, address, and social security number. 

There are many different companies that advertise free credit reports, but only one is authorized by the government to give you the free credit report that you are entitled to receive annually. An individual can get a credit report online which has immediate access. It is also possible to call a toll free line or fill out an Annual Credit Report Request Form to order a credit report by mail. Requesting a credit report can take up to 15 days to receive, although it can take longer when backed up.

While everyone is entitled to just one free credit report a year, others can be obtained in the situation where a company takes actions against the individual, for example denial of employment, insurance or credit. An additional free credit report is given when an individual is unemployed or on welfare. If an individual needs a credit report but does not qualify for one, it can be purchased for up to $10.50.

There are certain actions that can affect a credit report negatively and cause a lower credit score. These things can be reported seven years such as an unpaid lawsuit, unless it is bankruptcy information which can be reported for 10 years. Certain information is permanent, such as criminal convictions, reports of an annual salary above $75,000, or applications for credit or life insurance above $150,000.

Any errors in the credit report should be reported by the individual to the reporting company, who will then work to make any corrections as necessary. The company should provide a written report and a copy of the credit report. The creditor must also be made aware of the error in order to prevent future erroneous reporting.

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