Credit and Your Consumer Rights
In the last couple months I have had a lot of issues pertaining to my credit. I have learned that a good credit rating is very important. Businesses inspect your credit history when they evaluate your applications for credit, insurance, employment, and even leases. Based on your credit payment history, businesses can choose to grant or deny you credit provided you receive fair and equal treatment. Sometimes, things happen that can cause credit problems: a temporary loss of income, an illness, even a computer error. Solving credit problems may take time and patience, but it doesn't have to be an ordeal.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) enforces credit laws that protect your right to obtain, use, and maintain credit. These laws do not guarantee that everyone will receive credit. Instead, the credit laws protect your rights by requiring businesses to give all consumers a fair and equal opportunity brochure to receive credit and to resolve disputes over credit errors.
This brochure explains your rights under these laws and offers practical tips to help you solve credit problems.
Your Credit Report
Your credit payment history is recorded in a file or report. These files or reports are maintained and sold by "consumer reporting agencies" (CRAs). One type of CRA is commonly known as a credit bureau. You have a credit record on file at a credit bureau if you have ever applied for a credit or charge account, a personal loan, insurance, or a job. Your credit record contains information about your income, debts, and credit payment history. It also indicates whether you have been sued, arrested, or have filed for bankruptcy.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is designed to help ensure that CRAs furnish correct and complete information to businesses to use when evaluating...