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What is the 'Fair Credit Reporting Act - FCRA'

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is the act that regulates the collection of credit information and access to your credit report. It was passed in 1970 to ensure fairness, accuracy and privacy of the personal information contained in the files of the credit reporting agencies. It requires that any person or entity requesting your report must demonstrate a permissible purpose for the information before it is released. It also designates the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) as the enforcement authority for the provisions of the act.

BREAKING DOWN 'Fair Credit Reporting Act - FCRA'

Under this act, you have the right to:

  • Know what's in your file.

  • Free file disclosure once per year from each of the major credit bureaus.

  • Ask for your credit score (there may be a fee).

  • Verify accuracy of report when required for employment purposes.

  • Notification if your file has been used against you.

  • Dispute and correct information that is incomplete or inaccurate.

  • Remove outdated, negative information (seven-years old or 10 years in the case of bankruptcy).
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