According to federal law, credit reporting agencies may report negative information on your credit report for a specific amount of time. The amount of time depends on the type of discrepancy. The times are as follows:
- Bankruptcies can be reported for ten (10) years.
- Civil suits, judgments, and records of arrest can be reported for seven (7) years.
- Paid tax liens can be reported for seven (7) years from the date of payment.
- Accounts placed in collections can be reported for seven (7) years.
If out-of-date entries appear on your credit report, notify and dispute the information with the credit reporting agency right away. For sample complaint letters and step-by-step instructions on how to dispute your credit report, click here.
Federal law requires the credit reporting agencies to investigate your dispute. If your dispute has been ignored, seek legal action.