New York, New York Credit Repair Attorney
The long-term consequences of identity theft should not be underestimated, especially where a person's credit is concerned. When identity thieves open credit card accounts in your name and default on them, banks report delinquent accounts to credit agencies like Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Defaults can significantly harm your credit score, making it difficult - if not impossible - to get a loan, credit card, or lease.
Since banks, retailers, and credit card companies depend on credit agencies for credit information, a mistake on a credit report can spread quickly. At the Katz Lawyers, our attorneys help victims of identity theft repair their credit and correct mistakes that have spread throughout the financial reporting system.
Regardless whether you've recently been a victim of identity theft or are trying to correct mistakes on your credit report, we can help. To schedule an appointment and discuss your case, contact credit report lawyers at the Katz Lawyers today.
What do I need to prove my identity was stolen?
Providing information to Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion documenting the theft of your identity is crucial. While each credit reporting agency may request additional documentation, the following items are generally submitted when a person's credit report has been harmed by identity theft:
- A copy of the police report filed when you reported you were a victim of identity theft.
- A certified copy of your signature along with copies of signed checks, mortgage or lease documents, and credit card receipts. These are used to compare your signature to any associated with an account illegally opened in your name.
- A legal affidavit, prepared by an attorney, testifying to the fact that the account or accounts opened in your name were not opened by you.
Your rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
Under the terms of the FCRA, credit reporting agencies cannot retain negative or false information for an undue length of time. Credit reporting agencies are required to act in a timely manner to correct false information after they've been notified of an error. If you provide evidence that your identity was stolen and certain accounts were not yours, credit reporting agencies are required to rectify the information on your account.
If, for whatever reason, this information is again added to your credit history, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion are required to notify you. This is important since misinformation, once it infects the credit reporting system, can resurface when banks or financial services companies share information without going through a credit reporting agency first. This is an important component of the FCRA since banks, financial lenders, and credit card companies are required to correct errors and report accurate information to credit reporting agencies.
The Importance of Checking Your Credit
Some people are victims of identity theft without even knowing it. An effective means for monitoring credit activity under your name is through an online monthly subscription service offered by Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion. At the very least, you should request a free copy of your credit report once a year. Under the terms of the FCRA, consumers can request a free copy of their credit report once a year by calling (877) 322-8228 or requesting it online at www.annualcreditreport.com.
For more information on repairing your credit after identity theft, contact credit report attorneys at the Katz Lawyers today.