| July 1, 2009

FTC sets rules affecting credit scores

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), along with a number of other agencies, has set new rules and guidelines with regard to the information furnished to credit reporting agencies.

The rules should improve the accuracy of credit scores. Under terms set forward by the agencies involved, information furnishers would be required to provide "certain additional information as necessary" to credit reporting agencies, which could affect a person’s credit score and creditworthiness.

"The guidelines specify one such circumstance – furnishers generally would need to include a consumer’s credit limit among the information they furnish to a credit reporting agency," the FTC stated.

According to the FTC, the rules also require that "reasonable policies" be established by those entities furnishing information to credit reporting agencies in order to implement the new guidelines.

Furthermore, the agencies have issued rules with regards to the direct dispute of inaccuracies in a credit report. Prior to the change, consumers would go through a credit reporting agency to dispute an inaccuracy.

Following the rule change, in most cases disputes can be submitted directly to furnishers. Furnishers will be required to investigate the disputes.

The effective date for the rules and guidelines is July 1 of next year.

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