In this age of information it can be tough to discern which tasks we are capable of handling ourselves and which tasks we should leave to the professionals. As bankruptcy lawyers we have clients who contact us on a regular basis and ask if they should hire a credit repair company to rebuild their credit. In short, we don’t think so.
In the case of repairing your credit after bankruptcy, an individual is perfectly capable of resurrecting his or her own credit score. Research is all what it comes down to and having the time to fill out forms and make certain phone calls. Six months after filing, we suggest pulling your credit report from all three credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion (you can pull your credit report for free once a year by going here). You should examine these reports to make sure all debts listed in your petition have been discharged through your bankruptcy. If a credit or collection agency has failed to report correctly, it will be up to you to be your own advocate. First, you should send, in writing, a letter to the creditor stating when you filed bankruptcy, your case number, when you were discharged from all your debt and a request that they correct the entry with all three bureaus. Next, go to the individual credit bureaus websites and determine the process of filing a dispute against the creditor that is not reporting correctly. If the battle continues and you need a legal hand, you should contact your bankruptcy attorney: they should be able to fax over the necessary information to clear up any matter.
If a creditor still fails to accurately report the discharge of your debts to the credit bureaus then they could be sanctioned for violating federal laws. You could also report them to the Federal Trade Commission.
As in everything, it is important to document as you communicate with these companies. Although they are required to document as well, it is nice to have your own personal reference, especially if you are dealing with a difficult or large company. Make sure to stand your ground and know your rights!