What can I do to fix my credit after foreclosure or short sale?
QUESTION: How long does foreclosure have to be reported in a credit report?
ANSWER: The law allows the creditor to report the derogatory item for not longer than 7 Years. The creditor can report this derogatory information for 7 years- but not a day more. The item can deleted prior to that time period referenced IF you can get the creditor to delete it. The credit bureaus will not delete the item for you.
Please remember the following: It is the creditors who can do the deletion for you!
You don’t have to validate or verify items in your credit report- BUT the creditor DOES need to verify them. The burden of proof is on the creditor and credit bureaus in any dispute!
What if the item is mostly accurate but you don’t think the creditor has verifiable proof?
You can begin with a dispute of the item and if the bureaus report back that the account is a “verified” item does it mean the bureau reviewed loan docs with signatures and personally verified the account??? NO- what It means is that somebody over at the creditor got a message from the bureau they then looked up the info in their electronic network and said “yes, this is accurate, or we verify this account”. But you still don’t know if it was verified in fact, since computers and information get mixed up all the time and no one ever pulled the file from cold storage…
If the creditor can’t VERIFY the account, it CANNOT be in your report. (period)
The FTC has a crucial statement in “A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act”:
So you can challenge the method of verification and the bureaus will delete the item, right?? WRONG. That’s fantasy- not reality. See reality below
In this opinion letter from the FTC we learn that if you are not satisfied with the response of the CRA, because you don’t feel like they researched the account adequately, (and they don’t- due to sheer volume) you can work with the creditor to get resolution and if necessary can sue them for damages.