Federal/State Credit Laws
Federal Laws Concerning Credit
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
Guarantees your rights regarding your credit file. If you are turned down for credit due to a credit report, you can learn the information in it from the credit bureau at no cost. Otherwise, disclosure of the information in your file by a credit bureau involves a fee. While correct information cannot be changed, you have the right to dispute incorrect information in a credit report.
The Equal Credit Opportunity Act
Requires that credit grantors extend credit fairly and without considering race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, or age (with certain exceptions). If you are turned down for credit you are entitled to the specific reasons for the creditor's action.
The Fair Credit Billing Act
Says that if you receive a billing that you feel is incorrect and you notify the creditor within 60 days, the creditor must either correct the bill or send you an explanation within 90 days.
The Truth in Lending Act
Requires credit grantors to tell you what using credit really costs (like interest rates, minimum monthly payment, etc.).
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
Prohibits harassment by debt collectors and requires that they verify for you the amount owed.
Your Liability for Fraudulent Credit Card/Debit Card/Cash Machine Card Charges Is limited under certain circumstances, but continues until you notify the card issuer of your cards' loss/theft.
Cease and Desist Letter
323 Elm St.
Hayfield, NY 12117
February 14, 1994
Attn: Mr. D. B. Smith
North American Collections Specialists
1313 Main Street, Suite 500
Hayfield, NY 12116
RE: Mastercard account #5419 1254 5778 9101
Dear Mr. Smith:
You are hereby notified under provisions of Public Laws 95-109 and 99361, also known as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, that your services are no longer desired.
1) You and your organization must CEASE & DESIST all attempts to collect the above debt. Failure to comply with this law will result in my immediately filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and this state's Attorney General's office. I will pursue all criminal and civil claims against you and your company.
2) Let this letter also serve as your warning that I may utilize telephone recording devices in order to document any telephone conversations that we may have m the future.
3) Furthermore, if any negative information is placed on my credit bureau reports by your agency after receipt of this notice, this will cause me to file suit against you and your organization, both personally and corporately, to seek any and all legal remedies available to me by law.
Since it is my policy neither to recognize nor deal with collection agencies, I intend to settle this account with the original creditor.
Bill of Rights
Trans Union Rights:
1. The right to know what is in your credit file and to receive a copy of that report with proper identification.
2. The right to receive credit file disclosures during normal business hours and on reasonable notice (1) in person. If you appear in person and furnish the proper identification, (2) by telephone. If you first make written request with proper identification and pay for any toll charges, or (3) by any other reasonable means available to the credit reporting agency and authorized by you. For in person disclosure you may be accompanied by one other person of your choosing, although you may be required to furnish written permission for your credit file to be discussed in the other person's presence.
3. The right to receive a free credit report within 30 days (per the Fair Credit Reporting Act) of being denied credit or employment based on information in a Trans Union report . Trans Union's current policy provides for a free report within 60 days of denial.
4. The right to request re-verification of information in the file and to have it removed if inaccurate or unverifiable and to have those results sent to anyone who has received your credit report within the past year or two years, if for employment, if you so request.
5. The right to receive the results of the investigation of disputed information within five business days following the completion of the reinvestigation.
6. The right to have the credit reporting agency review all information you submit which is relevant to the disputed information.
7. The right to receive written notification within 5 business days from the credit reporting agency when information you disputed is deleted from your credit file because it could not be verified, but is subsequently found to be complete and accurate and is reinserted into your credit file.
8. The right to know who has received your credit report within the past six months or in the last two years, if for employment purposes.
9. The right to add a statement of 100 words or less to your Trans Union credit file to explain any disputed information.
10. The right to have your credit report only accessible to those entities with a permissible purpose.
11. The right to request the credit reporting agency to provide you with a description of the procedure used to determine the accuracy and completeness of the information disputed, including the name, business address, and telephone number of the person contacted during the reinvestigation.
12. The right to have adverse information removed after seven years (or the time period upheld by your state's legislation) from the date of delinquency charge off or placement to collection (including successfully completed chapter 13 bankruptcy) or after 10 years from the date of filing chapter 7, 11, 12 or 13 bankruptcy.
13. The right to have your name and address removed from any direct marketing solicitation which uses data from a credit reporting company.
14. The right to bring legal action against a credit reporting agency for the failure to comply with its obligations under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, if you do so within two years after the agency fails to comply. You have the right to recover an amount equal to actual damages sustained by you, as well as costs of the action plus attorney's fees.
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