After you have mailed your credit dispute letter and supporting documentation to a credit reporting agency (CRA), the process typically results with your letter being
outsourced to another country like India, Costa Rica, Jamaica, or the Philippines
for processing. Whether you disputed credit information with Equifax, Experian, Trans Union, or another CRA will ultimately determine the particular country in which your dispute is outsourced. When the CRA receives the credit dispute letter, it normally has the dispute letter with attachments scanned into its system. Next, the CRA has the foreign-based processor review the letter and documentation to identify your particular type of dispute and select a code number that best describes your particluar dispute. At this point, the CRA must notify the furnisher of your dispute. The FCRA presently requires that the CRA must notify the furnisher of the dispute within five business days of receiving your credit dispute letter. The CRA will send notice of your dispute through an electronic system known as E-OSCAR via a form called an Automated Consumer Dispute Verification form or “ACDV”. The furnisher of the disputed credit information will receive the ACDV and has a duty to conduct a reasonable investigation of the dispute.
I think that it is helpful to imagine your credit dispute letter running on two parallel train tracks, one with the CRA and one with the furnisher of the information. When the CRA reviews your dispute, if it determines that the disputed information is inaccurate,
incomplete, or cannot be verified, it has to delete the item of information or change the information as appropriate given the results of its reinvestigation. The time required for a CRA to complete its investigation depends on certain factors and can be extended, but a good rule of thumb is that a CRA has about thirty days to complete the investigation of your credit dispute. In addition, the furnisher of the disputed credit information also has a responsibility to investigate your dispute. The furnisher should make a detailed inquiry into its records to assure that the information reported is full, complete, and accurate. Often times the furnisher will only check its computer records to determine if it has already made a decision regarding the disputed account and will not conduct the thorough analysis required. After the furnisher completes its investigation, it will send a response to back to the credit reporting agency.
When the investigation of your credit dispute letter is concluded, the CRA must send you notice of the results of the reinvestigation. The results of the reinvestigation will typically be mailed to you unless you have authorized some other method of notice. The notice of the results of the reinvestigation should also include notice that you may request a description of the procedure used to determine the accuracy of your disputed
information. It can be a good idea to request this information from a CRA if incorrect information remains on your credit file or if the source of the information is of dubious origin. You will also receive notice of the right to have previous users of your credit file notified of the disputed account. Finally, you also have the right to place a statement of dispute in your credit file describing why you believe a certain item of information is incorrect. As with the credit dispute letter you send, you will want to keep a copy of the results of the reinvestigation of your dispute letter. If you have many disputes with multiple CRAs, you will probably want to purchase a multi-pocket file folder as your records will become numerous. If your disputed credit report information remains on your credit report following the initial credit dispute letter, I would recommend that you contact an attorney that specializes in credit report litigation.