Consumer credit reports are often used by businesses to help them decide whether to lend money or provide other types of benefits to a particular consumer. Credit bureaus offer credit report information on consumers to interested parties, to enable them to assess a person’s risk levels or suitability for a loan or other purpose. These consumer credit reports show the status of your credit score including judgments, tax liens, and additional credit-related information. Your consumer credit report can be accessed very easily, and often at little or no cost. In fact, you are entitled to one free copy a year. Be sure to check your consumer credit report often to ensure that it is accurate.

To purchase a copy of your consumer credit report, there are a number of contact details that you can use:

Equifax call: (800) 997-2493
write: Equifax Information Service Center
P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, GA 30374-0241

Experian (Formerly TRW) call: (888) 397-3742
write: Experian National Consumer Assistance Center
P.O. Box 2104
Allen, TX 75013-2104.

Trans Union call: (800) 888-4213
write: Trans Union Corp. Consumer Disclosure Center
P.O. Box 390
Springfield, PA 19064-0390.

A copy of your consumer credit report will cost between 8.00 and 11.00 USD. You can also get a free copy of your consumer credit report if you have been turned down for credit in the last two months. If you do have a problem with your consumer credit report, you can repair it. Many creditors offer their clients help in cleaning up their consumer credit report. Accurate data, negative or positive cannot be removed legally from a consumer credit report. However, if there is incorrect information on your consumer credit report you should know the following:

1. You can usually have inaccurate information removed from your credit report at little or no cost by contacting the relevant credit bureau.

2. Credit repair scams that involve “file segregation” or hiding unfavorable credit history are often illegal.

3. Credit repair companies are required to provide consumers with complete information about the services they will provide. They must not charge a fee until after services have been provided.

Therefore, if you are ever asked to compensate a credit repair service before they have successfully repaired your consumer credit report, it is illegal, and you should not pay them. Be sure to get a detailed list of what they will do to help you and know your rights.