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It is important to check your credit reports for inaccurate information, especially when you need to improve your credit score. Inaccurate information on your credit report can decrease your credit score. You can receive free copies of your credit reports every 12 months. If you discover inaccurate information on your credit reports, you can use a 609 letter to remove the information. In some cases, you can use a 609 letter to remove accurate information from your credit report that is negative. Keep reading to find out how to use a 609 letter to improve your credit rating.

What Is a 609 Letter?

A 609 letter refers to a request made according to Section 609 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Section 609 discusses your right to receive copies of your credit reports. It also discusses the information contained in your credit report.

Section 609 does not have anything to do with your right to dispute information included in a credit report. There is nothing in the FCRA that refers to a 609 dispute letter. Section 611 of the FCRA explains your right to dispute information found in your credit reports.

However, Section 609 does give you some very important rights related to your credit report, including:

  • The right to receive all information contained in your consumer credit files
  • The right to know the source of the information used for your credit history
  • The list of businesses that made soft inquiries into your credit within the past year
  • The employers who have accessed your credit report within the past two years unless it was to complete an investigation

The FCRA gives consumers the right to dispute information they believe cannot be verified or is inaccurate. The credit reporting agencies must remove disputed information that they cannot confirm or verify. However, if the credit reporting agency verifies the information and it is accurate, the law does not require them to remove the information from your credit report.

They must provide a description of the process to dispute information if you request the information in writing.

How to Use a 609 Letter for Credit Repair?

A 609 letter may help you remove negative information from your credit report. The letter demands information that the credit reporting agency may not have or may have trouble finding.

The law requires the credit reporting agency to provide this information under Section 609. If not, they have no choice but to remove the information from your credit report that they cannot verify. However, if the credit reporting agency verifies the information later, it could be added back to your credit report.

Removing information from your credit report does not eliminate your liability for repaying the debt. However, removing the debt from your credit report could improve your credit score.

What Should a 609 Letter State?

There are several templates available online for a 609 letter. However, nothing in the law requires you to use a specific format or wording to make the request. For example, a 609 letter may be as simple as the following sample:

Date

Dear [name of credit bureau]:

According to my rights under Section 609 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, I request information regarding items listed on my consumer credit report. I am entitled to receive the source of the information under Section 609, which includes the original contract with the creditor showing my signature.

I include a copy of my driver’s license, Social Security Card, and proof of residence [such as a copy of a utility bill or lease agreement with your address that matches your driver’s license]. Enclosed is a copy of the credit report with the accounts circled and highlighted.

I request all information on the following items:

[List names of creditors and account numbers]

If you cannot verify the original account with an original contract within 30 days, I request you remove the item from my credit report. Please notify me of your action regarding these accounts.

Sincerely,

Your signature

Address and contact number

Problems with Using a 609 Letter for Repair Your Credit

There is no objective evidence that sending a 609 letter is an effective means of credit repair. Several problems with a 609 letter include:

  • The FCRA does not require credit bureaus to keep proof of debts or signed contracts. Therefore, the information might be valid without a signed contract.
  • Accurate and verified information remains on your credit report.
  • There is no guarantee that credit reporting agencies remove the accounts.

The 609 letter is merely another credit repair tool that many people try. It does not cost them anything other than their time.

Other Ways to Dispute Inaccurate Information on Credit Reports

If you discover inaccurate information on your credit report, there are better ways to dispute the information to have it removed from your credit report. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau provides detailed instructions for disputing information on credit reports, including dispute forms and templates. The Federal Trade Commission also has a dispute letter template on its website.

You can hire a lawyer to help you dispute information on your credit report, but you can also do the same things yourself without the cost. USA.gov has detailed information on its website about credit reports and scores. The FTC also provides information about credit repair.

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Dealing with debt problems is stressful and overwhelming. If you have debts you cannot pay, Ascend can help.

We provide free assessments to help you find a debt relief option that works for you. From bankruptcy to debt-repayment plans, we are here to help you get rid of debts.

Post Author: Ascend

Group of guest writers and industry experts who have specific expertise in Chapter 13 bankruptcy, Chapter 7 bankruptcy, debt relief, debt settlement, and debt payoff.

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