Consumer

Credit

Reports

Online

Guide


 

 

Credit Report FAQ

  1. How can I receive a free credit report?
  2. Can I order my credit report online?
  3. Can I view my credit report online?
  4. How can I check someone's credit record for a legitimate business need?
  5. How long does a bankruptcy filing stay on my credit record and how can I get a copy of a bankruptcy record?
  6. What should I do if I think there is an error on my credit record?
  7. What is the contact information for Experian, Equifax, and Trans Union?
  8. How can I get my FBI file?
  9. What happened to TRW credit reports?
  10. Why check your credit report?
  11. Five reasons to check your credit report regularly.
  12. Can consumers fight back against credit fraud?
  13. Applying for a loan?-- Why you should start by ordering your credit report.

How can I receive a free credit report?

You may qualify for a free report from one of the Credit Reporting Agencies if you meet certain criteria of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.  Residents of Colorado, Georgia, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, or Vermont are entitled, based on state law, to one free credit report a year (2 in Georgia).  See our Free Credit Report Page for more information.

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Can I order my credit report online?

All the Credit Reporting Agencies offer the ability to order a report online.  See our Online Credit Report Online Guide for more information.

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Can I view my credit report online?

Experian is the only Credit Reporting Agency that offers online access to an individual's credit report.  No matter the source, the only credit report you will be able to view instantly online is your Equifax credit report.  You can order an online report directly from Equifax.   Equifax online credit repot order form (plus example online report).  

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How can I check someone's credit record for a legitimate business need?

Contact one of the CRA's directly for this information.  The CreditReportGuide.com's focus is on consumer rights and access to one's personal credit report.

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How long does a bankruptcy filing stay on my credit record and how can I get a copy of a bankruptcy record?

Generally a bankruptcy staty on your credit record for 10 years while other information only stays on your credit record for 7 years. You can order a copy of a bankruptcy record by clicking here. The cost is $29 for a summary, $69 with a creditor list, and $125 for a full paper report.

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What should I do if I think there is an error on my credit record?

You should order your credit report confirm that it does in fact contain an error and to determine what form the error has taken.  If there is an error you should report the error, in writing, to both the credit reporting agency and the organization that is the source of the error.  (CRA contact information)

  • Inaccurate information must be corrected or deleted. A CRA must remove or correct inaccurate or unverified information from its files, usually within 30 days after you dispute it. However, the CRA is not required to remove accurate data from your file unless it is outdated (as described below) or cannot be verified. If your dispute results in any change to your report, the CRA cannot reinsert into your file a disputed item unless the information source verifies its accuracy and completeness. In addition, the CRA must give you a written notice telling you it has reinserted the item. The notice must include the name, address and phone number of the information source.

  • You can dispute inaccurate items with the source of the information. If you tell anyone -- such as a creditor who reports to a CRA -- that you dispute an item, they may not then report the information to a CRA without including a notice of your dispute. In addition, once you've notified the source of the error in writing, it may not continue to report the information if it is, in fact, an error.

  • Outdated information may not be reported. In most cases, a CRA may not report negative information that is more than seven years old; ten years for bankruptcies.

For more information about fixing errors on your credit report and improving your credit score you may want to consider the Credit Repair Kit.

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What is the contact information for Experian, Equifax, and Trans Union?

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The information on this page is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional financial, credit, or legal advice.

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