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Dispute Strategies

Avoiding the Credit Bureau's Automated System

Working outside the automated system is perhaps the single most important technique you can use for credit repair. Credit reporting agencies receive approximately 10,000 credit report disputes per day! That's a lot of investigations they need to conduct. How do the credit bureaus handle the onslaught of disputes? They use an automated system to receive and investigate disputes. If your dispute gets picked up by the automated system, you'll probably receive an automatic confirmation verifying that the information is correct; no actual investigation occurred and no corrections will be made to your file. The automated system is a "reconfirmation" system, rather than a "reinvestigation" system.

The key is to have a person receive and investigate your credit report dispute letter; that way not only does an actual investigation occur, but mistakes could be made because people make mistakes.

To make sure you avoid the automated dispute processing system:

  1. Dispute everything in writing. Do not dispute items by phone or online.
  2. Make a clerical error (or errors) in your letter, like adding an extra digit to your address, tossing in a punctuation sign in the middle of your Social Security number, or intentionally misspelling a few words.
  3. Or, simply handwrite your dispute letter. Just make sure it is legible.
  4. Cite sections, titles, and codes of the law in your letter (already contained in our letter templates).
  5. Ask for the name and address of the person who verified the account, along with the method they used to verify the account.

Remember the credit bureaus have to respond in a timely and appropriate manner. By avoiding the automated dispute process and requesting the additional information contained in our letter templates, you are increasing the likelihood that the credit bureaus won't be able to respond in time (within 37 days), or that their response will be inadequate. Either scenario gives you leverage to have the record removed.

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