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Equifax Credit Report Errors


GoreyGirl
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Hi all. I was just wondering if any people here have experienced a problem with what appears to be Equifax's data entry system.

 

I was greeted this morning by an email from my Equifax monitoring service that a judgment had been entered against me by a County Special Civil Court--a county which is 60 miles from my home. Further research with the County Court clerk reveals that it has been reported by a firm which buys bad debts from creditors at a low price and then initiates legal action to collect on the debt--in this case, a credit card amount of $906.

 

To make a long story short, the Court clerk provided me with name of the attorney handling this case. I called them and after asking for some info from me--last 4 digits of SS#, dob etc.--confirmed that this debt had nothing to do with me. In fact, although the last name is the same, the first name matches mine somewhat but not that close that it would be easy to confuse the two. Say my first name is "Sharon"--the name on the debt is "Sharlene". This person does live in the respective county, whereas I have lived for the past 22 years in a county over an hour's drive away.

 

The attorney's office said that Equifax is the one who has erroneously placed this judgment on my credit file, and that I should initiate a dispute with Equifax immediately. I did this today via their internet site, and now I have to wait until the matter is cleared up. Meanwhile, my score dropped from 740 to 722--not terribly bad but very unnecessary and aggravating.

 

Why I am writing this is that not too long ago, Equifax made what I presume is another data entry error regarding a past due bill for lab work that amounted to $300. After checking with the creditor and the collection agency, it was discovered that it was not mine. Again, the first name was "Sharlene", not "Sharon".

 

Is anyone else experiencing problems with the way Equifax is misplacing these negatives on credit reports? One would think that, considering how important a credit score is today, some kind of care would be taken to put the negative on the proper person's account.

 

To sum up this overlong post, I have some questions that I hope someone can help me with:

 

1. Although I have disputed online, there is no area where one could provide additional information. In my case, I would have liked to add the name and phone number of the attorney (I also have their file number re: this debt). Should I do a follow up dispute in writing to add this info or just let the online dispute suffice?

 

2. Realizing the vast amount of records Equifax has and the work involved, still I can't understand how someone placed this negative on my file. What criteria do they use for their entry system? I probably wouldn't be so upset but this is the second time and a judgment is a very serious matter.

 

Any thoughts or experiences of others would be most appreciated. I have to wonder how often this happens to others who may not realize the error for months or even longer :(

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I may be wrong here, but don't the CRAs report the information that is given TO THEM by a data furnisher?

It actually sounds more like the collection agency screwed it up and they are laying blame on EQ.

 

My prediction is that EQ will have this judgement verified by the CA.

 

I would send a CMRRR letter to the agency and person you spoke with. Recap your phone conversation and demand that THEY have the erroneous entry removed from EQ within 48 hours. You might even consider copies to the FTC, BBB and attorney general for your state.

 

Don't let them bounce you around. They can remove it a lot easier than you can.

 

Just my outlook on it.

 

CBW

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I may be wrong here, but don't the CRAs report the information that is given TO THEM by a data furnisher?

It actually sounds more like the collection agency screwed it up and they are laying blame on EQ.

 

My prediction is that EQ will have this judgement verified by the CA.

 

I would send a CMRRR letter to the agency and person you spoke with. Recap your phone conversation and demand that THEY have the erroneous entry removed from EQ within 48 hours. You might even consider copies to the FTC, BBB and attorney general for your state.

 

Don't let them bounce you around. They can remove it a lot easier than you can.

 

Just my outlook on it.

 

CBW

 

 

For what may actually be a first for me, I agree with the CA. Creditors don't report judgments to the CRA's. There are companys like lexis nexis that search public records from courhouses and then for a price, furnish that info to the CRA's. IMO, this one is on equifax.

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Thank you both.

 

When this happened awhile ago with a Lab Diagnostics Company, I had called them and they verified the debt was not mine. I then phoned the collection company, who had Equifax remove the baddy. They claimed it was a mistake by Equifax, but somehow that is hard to believe.

 

The collection agency, who apparently uses the law firm I spoke with yesterday, is called Midland Funding LLC. A quick look up on Google shows them to be an apparently shady entity who buys bad debts from the CCs and then tries to collect the full amount from the debtor. So far I haven't even been able to find an address, let alone a phone number for them.

 

Worse yet, the lady from the County Court told me to fill out this long form from their website to appear in court and PROVE I am not this person! I am disabled and find this very difficult to do. I am furious that such a ridiculous mistake can be made when none of the info except my last name is the same as the debtor.

 

I think I will compose and send a letter to the attorney's office referring to my phone call and requesting them to inform Equifax of the error and give them the correct person's info. They would probably get correspondence from Equifax anyway asking them about this and it will save everyone a lot of time.

 

If anyone can find something on Midland Funding, please post. I'm having difficulty and usually am a lot better at this but for some reason this is proving very difficult for me right now.

 

Thank you and please keep the suggestions coming. I am so upset I can barely type this. :(

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Yeah, IME partial match judgments from LexisNexis or whoever puts them on there are not uncommon.

 

To make a long story short, the Court clerk provided me with name of the attorney handling this case. I called them and after asking for some info from me--last 4 digits of SS#, dob etc

 

Yikes! Please don't give this sort of info to the attorney for a CA that's not even yours, or one that is either.

 

There's no reason to have contact with this attorney. Tell EQ you don't have a judgment of this amount, date, plaintiff, docket #, etc. http://whychat.5u.com/deletejudg.html

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Please critique this letter, which I plan to send to the attorney's office as well as Midland Funding:

 

Dear Sir or Madam:

 

I am writing to inform you that the entry posted on my Equifax credit report regarding a judgment against me is incorrect due to the fact that I am not the person to whom this debt belongs.

 

Upon contacting the Court, I was informed that the first name on this debt is Sharlene and that the person resides in a city 60 miles away from me. In addition, I am a resident of a different county and have lived here for 22 years. I have never had a credit card with the lender involved.

 

I am very concerned that a negative entry has been posted to my Equifax credit report in error and would appreciate it very much if you would kindly contact Equifax to remove this incorrect information. I have also filed a dispute with Equifax regarding this.

 

Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

 

Sincerely,

 

*****Any suggestions would be most appreciated. *********

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I suggest, again, not contacting them and disputing with EQ instead.

 

It would be a lot easier on me that way. I did call EQ and the very helpful woman added additional information and listed it as "mistaken identity". So I'll let them take it from there. If they need to contact the attorney/collection agency they will do so. The Court was very helpful in providing me with all the info about this judgment (even the credit card #!). She did give me the URL of a form to fill out to appear in court pro se and prove that this person is not me. Hello...I'm the victim here! This is going way overboard. IF I were to do that it would be with legal counsel.

 

Just wish I had seen the letter of the URL that you kindly provided for me before I disputed this with EQ. We are going through some tough times right now and this is the last thing I need to be bothering with.

 

Believe me, if either the attorney or the collection agency try to turn this around and pin it on me, I will sue for damages.

 

BTW, Equifax stated that all information is provided by a collection agency when a negative is placed on a report. She was emphatic that EQ does not make errors of this kind and that no one wants to pony up to the fact that they goofed.

 

P.S. If you think I should dispute this by letter in addition to what I have already done, I will happily do that as well. We are dealing with serious illness in the family right now and my energies should be focused there. Sorry that I sound so crazy.

Edited by GoreyGirl
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I may be wrong here, but don't the CRAs report the information that is given TO THEM by a data furnisher?

It actually sounds more like the collection agency screwed it up and they are laying blame on EQ.

 

My prediction is that EQ will have this judgement verified by the CA.

 

I would send a CMRRR letter to the agency and person you spoke with. Recap your phone conversation and demand that THEY have the erroneous entry removed from EQ within 48 hours. You might even consider copies to the FTC, BBB and attorney general for your state.

 

Don't let them bounce you around. They can remove it a lot easier than you can.

 

Just my outlook on it.

 

CBW

 

For what may actually be a first for me, I agree with the CA. Creditors don't report judgments to the CRA's. There are companys like lexis nexis that search public records from courhouses and then for a price, furnish that info to the CRA's. IMO, this one is on equifax.

 

 

Ya know.. After re-reading OP and my reply I have to agree.. Corona and credit repair don't mix boys and girls. :blush2:

 

CBW

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I suggest, again, not contacting them and disputing with EQ instead.

 

It would be a lot easier on me that way. I did call EQ and the very helpful woman added additional information and listed it as "mistaken identity". So I'll let them take it from there. If they need to contact the attorney/collection agency they will do so. The Court was very helpful in providing me with all the info about this judgment (even the credit card #!). She did give me the URL of a form to fill out to appear in court pro se and prove that this person is not me. Hello...I'm the victim here! This is going way overboard. IF I were to do that it would be with legal counsel.

 

Just wish I had seen the letter of the URL that you kindly provided for me before I disputed this with EQ. We are going through some tough times right now and this is the last thing I need to be bothering with.

 

Believe me, if either the attorney or the collection agency try to turn this around and pin it on me, I will sue for damages.

 

BTW, Equifax stated that all information is provided by a collection agency when a negative is placed on a report. She was emphatic that EQ does not make errors of this kind and that no one wants to pony up to the fact that they goofed.

 

P.S. If you think I should dispute this by letter in addition to what I have already done, I will happily do that as well. We are dealing with serious illness in the family right now and my energies should be focused there. Sorry that I sound so crazy.

No, wait till the 30days are up(at least to the Cra's) Now if you want to send a letter CMRRR to the CA Legal team(and or Ceo/VP) or to cover all bases all of em) by all means go ahead and do that. If you send in another letter to the Cra's chances are good that you'll get an additional 15 days added on to your disputes. However chances are if Lexis Nexis is reporting the debt or Choicepoint (which is who I think Eq uses for public verification on judgments and the like)it will come back verified. Be prepared to order your reports... tho I'm not sure if you can dispute info on your Choicepoint repot.. I know you can w/ Lexis.. not sure on Choicepoint. The Cra's will always tell you they get their info from the Data furnisher, they never wish to reveal who they truly get their public information from unless you sue them

Edited by beli
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Update! This morning I received an email indicating that the Court judgment has been removed from my credit report. I pulled it again and lo and behold it is gone. That has to be a record for an EQ dispute.

 

My guess is that EQ simply confirmed the error with the Court Clerk (or else pulled the original notification from whatever agency reported the judgment and noticed the error themselves). The attorney's office had told me I had to initiate a dispute with the credit agency. I was told that Midland Funding was the entity that would have reported this judgment to EQ.

 

I'm still under the impression that EQ made the error and placed this on the wrong report. This is, as previously stated, the 2nd time this happened. I checked and it was just last year that a collection had been placed on my file in error. When I contacted the creditor and the collection agency, both were surprised as they had provided the correct info to EQ. It does appear to me that EQ might indeed have problems in the data entry area.

 

Be that as it may, the issue has been resolved and my score was also re-adjusted. I want to thank everyone who was kind enough to offer advice. If anything, this shows that people do need to check their credit reports at least twice a year, if not more often. It also shows that the money I spend on having a credit watch service is well spent. Having no reason at present to pull my credit report, this could have sat on my file for quite a while and I wouldn't have suspected a thing.

 

And might I add, this forum is invaluable. I'm so glad there is a place to go to for help with anything having to do with credit. It's so important in today's weird financial climate to have resources and people who are willing to help and share their experiences. Thank you all!

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