by Jeff Sovern
Today's Times reports that credit bureaus give VIPs special treatment. When VIPs complain about errors in their credit reports, they "get special help from workers in the United States in fixing mistakes on their credit reports. Any errors are usually corrected immediately, one lawyer said." The article explains:
For everyone else, disputes are herded into a largely automated system. Their complaints are often electronically ferried to a subcontractor overseas, where a worker spends, on average, about two minutes figuring out the gist of the matter, boiling it down to a one-to-three-digit computer code that signifies the problem — “account not his/hers,” for example — and sending a dispute form to the creditor to investigate. Many times, consumer advocates say, the investigation translates to a perfunctory check of its records.
This is troublesome for several reasons, but one that jumps out derives from section 1681e(b) of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, which provides "Whenever a consumer reporting agency prepares a consumer report, it shall follow reasonable procedures to assure maximum possible accuracy of the information . . . ." If the bureaus can provide such procedures for VIPs, it's hard to believe that it is reasonable for them not to provide them for everyone. Hoist by their own petard.