Category Archives: Mixed Case File

How Debt Collectors Furnish Data to Credit Bureaus (Part Two)

If you haven’t yet, read part 1! Though tradelines—reports of outstanding debts—can considerably impact a consumer’s credit report and credit score, a report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) reveals that debt collection reporting is uneven and suspect. Updating the information on a credit report often does not depend on the debt resolution. Instead, […]

How Debt Collectors Furnish Data to Credit Bureaus (Part One)

According to a report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), debt collectors provide vast amounts of data to the three national credit bureaus—Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. The bureaus then use the debt collectors’ data in calculating the credit reports (and credit scores) of 220 million consumers. And concerningly, the CFPB has identified critical issues […]

Common Customer Complaints about Credit Reporting Bureaus (Part 2)

In our last post (click here to read part 1), we looked at the dramatic increase in consumers’ complaints against the national credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. But, of course, we need to do more than know the number of complaints we need to pay attention to. We also want to examine the types […]

Common Customer Complaints about Credit Reporting Bureaus (Part 1)

By law, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issues an annual report analyzing consumers’ complaints made to CFPB. The number of complaints has exploded in recent years, and it’s just a tiny fraction of the complaints made directly to the relevant companies. And it’s worth looking at some of the findings relating to those complaints. […]

Can You Tell the Difference Between Identity Theft and Mixed Files?

You may be familiar with the problem of identity theft. But can you tell apart identity theft, and a “mixed file” issue where a credit reporting agency (“CRA”) mixes up the credit history of two or more people? Making the distinction can be very important for deciding how to respond. How Can I Tell if […]

Consumer Reporting Complaints (Part 2)

Read part 1 by clicking here! From January 2020 to September 2021, CFPB received more than 700,000 consumer complaints about Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax—the national credit reporting agencies (NCRAs). But the number of successfully resolved complaints dropped to just 5%. Why? According to a recent report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), one reason […]

Mistaken Identities on a Credit Report: An All-too Common Problem for People with Common Names… (and Those with Unusual Ones, Too….)

In 2014, 38,313 men in the United States shared the name “James Smith.” It’s impossible to know if any of them were related to each other, or the 34,810 Michael Smiths and 34,269 Robert Smiths also walking around. But we can expect that they, and the 32,092 Maria Garcias and 30,507 Maria Rodriguezes, all have […]

The Mixed-Up Files of Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion: What Happens When You and Your Neighbor Have the Same Name

Is your name James Smith? If so, you’re not just not alone, but as far from alone as it’s possible to be. That’s because this is the most common combination of first and last names in the world. And chances are you’ve developed a way to distinguish yourself, at least in your social circle or […]

Frustrated, Furious, or Depressed Because of a Credit Report Glitch? How to Fix It, Fast!

Have you ever been denied a bank or credit union loan, had an apartment application denied, or stood red-faced and sweating as the supermarket cashier says your debit card has been declined? If so, you know that financial and credit-related issues can be embarrassing and anxiety-inducing. But did you realize that you could be compensated […]

Credit Reports: Not As Accurate As You Might Think

Your credit score wields a lot of influence over your life. It can be the make-or-break determinate when buying a car, securing a mortgage, or accessing a line of credit for a new business venture. We’d like to think the logic behind our score is pretty bulletproof, but that may not be the case. In […]