The accuracy of such reports are regularly called into question, so it’s understandable why you would wonder if background credit checks can be trusted. Consider the following if you feel less than confident that you’re getting the whole truth when you peruse your next credit report.
Credit reporting entities aren’t out to ruin people.
This is a fact troubled people can fail to realize; it’s not in the best interest of credit agencies to give consumers a bad name or put them in a negative light. The job of reporting credit is strictly focused on facts and figures that come from outside agencies and people. Ask anyone working for a credit reporting entity about their job and they will tell you that they have no axes to grind—nor do legitimate reporting entities encourage personnel to put people in a bad light. Only verifiable facts can tell the story of your credit history.
Laws protect you.
Federal and state laws give consumers recourse should errors and mistakes wind up on background credit reports. Ditto manipulated data capable of impacting your work, personal and financial lives. One of the most important laws is the Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). This legislation regulates the way information is reported so judgments aren’t erroneously made about you or your character. Parameters exist within the law that limit.
Reputations are at stake.
Plenty of reputations are on the line when a credit report is prepared and distributed—reputations that wouldn’t last long if information provided was wrong or misleading. Given contemporary society’s demand for transparency, credit reporting bureaus work hard to check and double check data so their brands don’t suffer bad publicity--which is why, for example, credit reporting agencies stress the importance of double checking information whenever a consumer notices a problem. The National Association of Professional Background Screeners has even begun an accreditation program so people and agencies doing background credit reports are properly screened to do the job.
You always have legal recourse.
According to the Credit Information Center, you have every right to sue a creditor or credit bureau if either violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, another piece of legislation that keeps people preparing credit reports for background checks on the up and up. Violations for inaccurate credit history reporting, some debt disputes, pulling your credit without permission, refusing to correct information once you’ve made a bureau or creditor aware of errors and a variety of misrepresentations are situations that could call for legal mediation and you could seek recourse for everything from protection under the FCRA to defamation if your case is strong enough. Should you trust a background credit report? The answer is yes.