Question: I recently discovered two charge-offs on my credit report. They were charged off in 2006. I never signed up for these credit cards. The original creditor is First Premier. They reported in 2009. The accounts were sold to LVNV Funding this year. I disputed these accounts with LVNV and they updated the accounts.
Should I dispute with the OC? I’m scared to dispute because the last time they reported was in 2009. I’ve heard about the 623 dispute (I believe that is what’s called). Should I try this? Thanks in advance!
Answer: I can only offer information on “How to Dispute a Charge-Off” and the “623 Method of Disputes.” You must weigh the benefits as well as the risks then make your decision to dispute or not because the date of last activity may be updated if the charge-off is verified as accurate by the creditor.
Once the date of last activity is updated, it appears as though recent activity has occurred. Recent negative information counts a lot more towards lowering your credit score than older negative information. The older negative information such as a charge-off gets, the less effect it has on your credit score. Sometimes waiting for negative credit to age-off your credit reports makes more sense than disputing.
It is unfortunate you did not follow the steps a victim of identity theft would normally take; that way, the fraudulent accounts may have been removed from your credit report with a simple Identity Theft Victim’s Complaint and Affidavit provided by the Federal Trade Commission.
Disputing fraudulent accounts with the credit bureaus can be successful if you have supporting documentation such as the Identity Theft Report. According to the FTC: “…If the company has already reported these unauthorized accounts or debts on your credit report, an Identity Theft Report will require them to stop reporting that fraudulent information.”
If you do decide to dispute use the resources available such as the FTC. They have a cover letter you can send to the credit card company and a letter to the credit reporting agencies which explains the rights you have by using the Identity Theft Report. More information can be found here regarding the FTC’s Identity Theft Report and how it works. Good luck to you.