If you are among those unfortunate ones who have spent months or years in some worst case scenarios to have the errors cleared from your credit reports, or one who does not have any error so far, it is important for you to know what should be done to be able to address these issues. Errors not only be an outcome of erroneous reporting from a lending institution or mapping issue at the bureaus’ end, it can also be on account of some serious issue like identity theft. Therefor it becomes apply necessary to address these at the earliest.
Not getting these addressed can lead to one’s name reflecting in the loans defaulter list. This will potentially spoil the credit profile and eventually lead to rejection of the loans and other credit facilities. Following is the step by step guide to what one should be doing:
Now that all four credit bureaus in India are obligated to extend a free credit report every year to all consumers, it is advisable to withdraw the same from all four (viz. CIBIL, Equifax, Experian and Crif Highmark). All that it takes is a few minutes to obtain it online.
Screen all four reports thoroughly. Identify if the errors are only on one bureau or same is reflecting on all reports. In case of first situation, it is more likely that there is a mapping issue and writing to the bureaus should be able to have this resolved. The second situation indicates towards erroneous reporting at the end of the lending institution. In case you are unable to comprehend the credit report or in case of any doubt please seek clarification from credit expert.
The next step has to be to report the errors. Even if the error is reflecting only on one report and is evidently a mapping issue at bureau's end, it is advisable to take up the matter with both bureau and the lender. This will only speed up the process. So while you write to the bureau, do write separately to the bank as well.
In case of multiple errors, you must initiate separate mail for each one of them. Not only will it help in tracking the errors individually, but would help in creating the trail of discussion and status. This may be required for escalation to higher authorities if required.
You must be aware of your rights. The bureaus and banks are obliged to resolve and respond within a stipulated time. This is within 30 days of raising the dispute.
Do not get disheartened and give up if you get to hear a No from the bureau or the bank. Since the error is genuine it has to get knocked off from the records else your credit profile will continue to be stressed and will potentially bar you from accessing the funds from organized lenders at the time of need.
Please note that in case of non-resolution of your concerns, there are higher authorities for having these issues addressed. First and foremost, the mail should go to the nodal officers of the bank if the same has not been resolved at first level (which is customer service). If the same does not get resolved with the nodal officer as well, then one can write to the banking ombudsman appointed by the Reserve Bank of India. Now while it may not be required, but in a scenario where the ombudsman is also unable to sort the issues out, one can approach the consumer court and file a petition.
Please take errors seriously and have them resolved at the earliest.