FCRA Attorney Pennsylvania | Consumer Attorneys
Welcome to Consumer Attorneys! Here's a question you don't get asked every day: When was the last time you analyzed your credit reports? If it has been more than a year, it's time to request your free reports from the three major credit reporting agencies (CRA): TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax.
You might respond to that question with a question of your own, such as, “Why would I need to check my credit reports?” We're glad you asked! Would it surprise you to learn that any one of your credit reports could contain serious errors that could prevent you from purchasing a home or buying a car? Not only that, but credit reports with adverse information have resulted in job applicants being denied job positions and promotions – all because credit-report mistakes were unnoticed, unaddressed, and allowed to linger.
At Consumer Attorneys, we connect Pennsylvania residents with local Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) attorneys who specialize in protecting consumers from individuals, businesses, or agencies who violate the FCRA. Violators could include debt collectors, background check companies, and any number of credit reporting agencies, including the three major CRAs!
Everything from inadvertent data entry errors to full-fledged fraud can generate serious red flags on your credit reports that you might never know about until it's too late. In other words, when you're ready to pursue that dream home, dream car, or dream job and are rejected, it could be due to credit report mistakes that lowered your credit score.
The FCRA is Your Legal Advocate
The FCRA is United States federal legislation that regulates the collection of credit information, as well as who is authorized to access your credit reports and who is not. The FCRA serves as your potent ally against false, omitted, or inaccurate information that may appear in your credit reports. The FCRA is also designed to protect your privacy of information.
When one's credit scores tumble due to unnoticed errors on credit reports, many people ask, “How does that happen?” Here is just a sample of situations that can tarnish your credit score right under your nose:
Merged Files – Similar or identical names can create problems with credit reports. Credit information belonging to someone within your family or outside your family with a similar or identical name can be accidentally merged into your credit report. Even the three major credit reporting agencies make this type of error. Interestingly, as many as 35% of merged files involve family members.
Identity Theft – Identity theft is a problem of epic proportions for those in Pennsylvania and many other states. If a thief succeeds in stealing your personal information, your credit cards, bank accounts, etc. would be prime targets used to make unlawful cash advances, purchases, or secure loans!
Identity theft is the fastest-growing crime in America. According to the recent Identity Fraud Study by Javelin Strategy & Research, identity theft generated $16.9 billion in losses in 2019 in the United States. In 2020, 47% of surveyed U.S. consumers experienced identity theft, 37% experienced application fraud, and 38% experienced unauthorized access to one or more existing accounts.
Continual monitoring of one's credit report must be taken seriously. If identity theft is suspected, one should:
- File a police report – some lenders, credit card companies, and debt collectors may require this
- Fill out an identity theft affidavit from the Federal Trade Commission http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/pdf-0094-identity-theft-affidavit and reach them at 1-877-438-4338. This needs to be submitted to all involved creditors.
- Notify the CRAs to generate a credit freeze, which would prevent anyone – including you – from opening up a new line of credit in your name. Transaction alerts with credit card issuers can also be established to provide additional security.
All this may feel overwhelming, but Consumer Attorneys is ready to ease your mind! We will put you in touch with an FCRA attorney team near you that specializes in identity theft.
Unauthorized Access – The FCRA strictly limits who has a legitimate reason to view your credit report. Legitimate searches are conducted by loan officers, potential landlords, employers, and others with your permission.
Your credit report, however, may have been accessed without your approval. If someone has viewed your account who does not have a permissible business purpose, take action immediately! Any type of unauthorized access should be viewed as potential identity theft.
Inaccurate Public Records – Oftentimes, CRAs will use independent agencies to search public records, and those independent agencies report back to the CRAs. Public records can be inaccurate in a variety of ways. For example, a bankruptcy that was discharged may not be reported as such. Then, there are inaccurate descriptions of properties. A simple clerical error indicating the wrong square footage of a home can lead to lending issues.
Stale Debt – Some debts are old enough to be considered 'stale.' Usually, trade lines (credit accounts reported to credit bureaus) should drop off one's credit report within seven or seven and a half years after the initial delinquency. If any delinquent debt is still on your credit report that shouldn't be there, a Pennsylvania FCRA attorney can address the barriers keeping the delinquent debt from falling off your credit reports.
Re-aging Debt – Are you aware that some collection agencies take it upon themselves to update accounts on credit reports? A collection agency has no legal authority to change the date of first delinquency. If this has occurred, it is a gross violation of federal law and is a suable offense.
The statute of limitations period starts on the date of the first non-payment or the date of the last activity on the account. If a collection agency has re-aged the original date of delinquency on one or more of your accounts, you have the right to pursue a cause of action, as outlined by the FCRA and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
Pennsylvania, We're Here for You!
Legal representation is critical to ensure your rights are being protected under the FCRA. You want a powerful legal advocate who will fight for your consumer rights, hold entities accountable, and work toward any financial damages. We encourage you to visit www.annualcreditreport.com to secure your free credit reports. If any information looks questionable, give us a call right away at 1-877-615-1725
An FCRA attorney will assess your situation as part of a free case review. You can also take advantage of a free credit report analysis. Your situation's circumstances may entitle you to financial damages.
Our Reputation + Our Expertise = Your Assurance
As a leading national consumer protection law firm, Consumer Attorneys offers Pennsylvania residents more than 10 years of in-depth consumer protection experience. Our attorneys' efforts have secured more than $100 million in monetary recoveries for our clients.
From Pennsylvania to Arizona to California, our FCRA attorney teams help consumers restore their good names, reputations, and credit standings that may have been negatively impacted by one or more parties' actions. Consumer Attorneys represents the interests of consumers nationwide in state and federal courts.
Consumer Attorneys is featured in a variety of prominent media outlets, including Super Lawyers, CR Consumer Reports, Bankrate, The New York Times, Daily News, Reuters, and Law Street. Super Lawyers, for instance, has a long-standing reputation for excellence and includes only qualified lawyers chosen from a select pool of peer-reviewed and independently researched candidates.
It's important to know that if your case is accepted, you will pay no out-of-pocket fees. Your FCRA attorney team would receive a fee only if it would win on your behalf!
Let's Get Your Life Back– Give Us a Call!
If your credit reports include damaging errors or if the errors have not been rectified after a proper dispute or other measures, call Consumer Attorneys immediately! Pennsylvania residents can connect with our legal team in various ways:
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