Reader Question: How to Resolve Credit Report Errors

by Mike on November 23, 2010

credit-denied-stampI received the following email the other day. Here is the email below and my reply. What other stories / advice can you offer this reader. I asked her to check back here for more info from this great community!

From: KS
Subject: son’s credit report

Message Body:
Can you tell us where to start? My son called, just recently opened a bank account with new wife. They ran a credit check. His came up with a big surprise. They have his social security number hooked to his older brother’s bad credit from a Sears debt, and my younger son was told that his older brother’s name was listed as his alias with this credit debt. How do you problem solve this? The older brother is in prison and the debt couldn’t be collected from him now. But, it is not fair to my younger son, who never had anything to do with the Sears account.

My reply:

If it is not your son’s debt, he’ll need to start by filing disputes with the 3 major bureaus. Here are the links:

You’ll need to be diligent and stay on top of this!

Here is some addition information about Alias on credit reports (courtesy of capital solutions)

If you have a common name, or are a Jr. or Sr., you may find other people’s information on your credit report. The credit bureaus say that there is not much they can do to prevent this mistake from occurring, so if you find this to be a problem, monitor your credit report carefully. Certainly, you should check it before you apply for a major loan or mortgage.

An alias is another name for you on your credit report. It may be another name under which you have applied for credit (a nickname, or a variation of your name, for example) or it may be a name of someone else. It is possible, if an alias appears on your credit report, that actual fraud was involved. Someone else may have applied for credit using your qualifications and the name they used may have been entered as an alias.

If you find an alias on your credit report, and it does not belong to you, contact the credit bureau immediately to have it removed.


Also, this is a good reminder to check your credit report on a regular basis! According to law, you are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the 3 bureaus listed above annually. The official site is Annual Credit Report

What about you? What advice would you give KS & her son? Have you ever had to file a dispute because of errors on your credit report?

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