Credit Law – Useful Tools to Fight Debt
Knowing credit law will give you a massive upper hand with dealing with credit and debt. Having this knowledge, you will be able to better prepare yourself when you need to dispute inaccurate credit items and debt. This can also really help with fraud prevention. These tools can set you up to fight any type of unauthorized debt. Here are 6 laws you should know to help you in these situations.
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Credit Law: The Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA)
The Fair Credit Billing Act involves being made aware of your credit card debit. It is not safe to assume you have no financial obligation to the credit card companies simply because you did not get a credit card bill for the month. There are however some situations where you were not properly notified of credit debt. There is a way you can protect yourself from additional interest. You can send a notice to the issuer within 60 days from when you were supposed to have received the credit card bill. If you prefer to just call, you can do that as well, but you must also follow up with the issuer in writing. Without written proof, there is no paper trail and you will not be protected through this act.
With the Fair Credit Bulling Act, you are also protected from fraudulent charges. This can range from a purchase you’ve made online that never arrived, or if you received an item that was not as described. This is called asserting a billing error, which involves writing the card issuers billing errors and inquiries department. The address for this department is typically included on your credit card bill. Once again, make sure this is all done in writing as a phone call will NOT protect you! Do not hesitate to report your card stolen immediately. You can view the complete law HERE.
Credit Law: The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
Most people tend to panic the moment they are notified that one of their accounts has gone into collections. Relax, there is a way out. You have the legal right to ask the debt collector for verification of the debt. This means that they will have to prove that you legitimately owe the amount specified in the collection letter or your credit report. To initiate the verification, you will have to send the debt collectors a letter via certified mail asking them to verify the debt. While waiting on a reply, try your best to gather as much evidence as possible if you feel you are not obligated to pay the debt.
If you know you owe the debt, the best route to go involved making a payment arrangement with the debt collectors. If you work with them early in the process, the debt will never hit your credit report and all parties will be satisfied. This window is very short, so I would recommend doing this as soon as possible, and also verifying with the debt collector that it was NOT reported to the credit bureaus before taking action on your collection account.as well! Do not hesitate to report your card stolen immediately. You can view the complete law HERE.
Credit Law: State Statutes of Limitations
Each state has slightly different limitations when it comes to the collection of a debt. This can be in our favor in some cases as some debt collectors will try any means even after these limitations have passed to collect a debt (typically, they will try to sue). You can use your states statute of limitations to fight this. If your situation falls under this umbrella, send a certified letter informing the debt collector that the collection account. Even if they take it to court, it will most likely be dismissed as the statute of limitations for that debt collection has passed.as well! Do not hesitate to report your card stolen immediately. You can view the complete law HERE.
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Credit Law: The Fair & Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FCRA)
This law allows you to get a free annual copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies every year. You are limited to one at no cost. The best part is you can spread it out and check one bureau every 4 months or so (i.e. check Experian, then Transunion, followed lastly by Equifax). This is very helpful for everyone as it allows you to know whats on your credit free of charge. Visit HERE to get your free credit reports from all three major bureaus.
An alternate to this would be to sign up with Credit Sesame. The information won’t be as in-debt as the one free credit report, but it gives you a REALLY good picture of what your credit looks like to lenders. The best part is it cost absolutely nothing and does not require a credit card. Check them out HERE.as well! Do not hesitate to report your card stolen immediately. You can view the complete law HERE.
Credit Law: The Truth in Lending Act
The Truth in Lending Act offers protection to those who have their credit/debit card stolen and fraudulent purchases are made with it. With this law, you are only on the hook for $50 if you report the theft within’ 60 days. If the card was used without the physical card present, then if reported within the 60 day window, you will not be liable for anything! All other unauthorized charges after that dollar amount are waived barring the results of an investigation. In most cases, if you report the fraudulent activity early enough, most institutions will waive the $50 as well! Do not hesitate to report your card stolen immediately. You can view the complete law HERE.
Credit Law: The Electronic Funds Transfer Act
The Electronic Funds Transfer Act is similar to the Truth in Lending Act, but with a much smaller window. If you notice fraudulent activity in your bank account within two business days of discovery, you will only be liable for $50 of that charge. In most cases, the issuer won’t even hold you responsible for the $50, meaning you are liable for $0! You must report loss of the card or theft within two business days of the fraudulent charge. If you do not, you will be liable for up to $500 in fraudulent withdrawals. If you don’t notify the issuer within 60 days, you could be out of the entire account. Act swiftly if you’ve notice your account has been compromised. You can view the complete law HERE.
Utilize Credit Law
Be sure to utilize these credit laws whenever you can to fight debt the right way. This will help fix your credit and prevent fraud from ruining your life. If you want the professionals to use these laws for you, CLICK HERE for our review on 3 VERY good credit/debt repair companies that have helped millions. Once again, thank you for visiting The Credit Dojo!