Debt Consolidation

A Step-By-Step Guide To Eliminate Debt Caused By Credit Card Fraud

Are you getting collection calls for credit card debt that you do not owe? This may happen, as most of the times credit card fraud racks up debt without even giving you a hint about it. This situation looks quite horrible, as it does not only affect your financial situation but it also have negative effects on your credit report. Besides that, things can become more problematic when you get harassing collection calls for debts that do not belong to you at the first place. But, don’t panic. There are certain steps that you can take to protect yourself. Though you may find the entire process a little time-consuming, but it is worth the effort because this is the only way to get those debts eliminated from your record. Following is a brief rundown on how to go about it.

Inform The Credit Card Company Immediately

When it comes to dealing with debt caused by credit card fraud, the first thing you have to do is to give a call to your credit card company and inform them that your card has been used fraudulently and that you are not going to take responsibility for the debts. You can find the phone number of the company at the back side of your monthly statements or on the card itself. The company will freeze your account with immediate effect in order to avoid any further debts.

File A Complaint With The Police

The next step is to file a complaint with the police. Make sure you explain everything to them in great detail, such as the amount of debt and the type of fraudulent activity that caused it. Keep a copy of this written police complaint with you; this is your proof that you are a victim and so cannot be held responsible for those debts. This will accelerate the process of eliminating those debts from your account.

Contact The Credit Bureaus

The third step is to contact the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Transunion, and Experian) and request them to put a fraud alert on your report. Once they add entries specifying that you are a victim of credit card fraud, it will significantly improve your chances of getting those debts eliminated very soon.

Review The Credit Reports

It is very important for you to keep in mind that victims of any such fraudulent activities are entitled to get a free copy of the credit report from the credit bureaus. So, contact the bureaus and request them to send a free copy of the report. Review the entries on the reports thoroughly, and if you find that the fraudulent accounts are still there, you must file a dispute with the bureau immediately. This will put a hold on that account, start an investigation, and eventually will provide you additional backing for the elimination of those debts.

Contact The Credit Card Company Again

Now, you have enough proofs and evidences available. So, you can go ahead and give a call to your credit card company again. Ask questions about why they are still reporting about those fraudulent debts to the credit bureaus when they know that you are a victim of credit card fraud. Fax the police report, the application of the dispute you filed with the bureau, and the copy of the complaint you initially made with the credit card issuer. Ask them to provide you a written assurance that they will not report about those fraudulent debts to your credit reports.

Dealing With Collection Agents

If you are getting collection calls regarding those debts that do not even belong to you, you should ask the agent to provide you the proof of debt. Besides that, to make your case stronger, you must also send them the copies of police reports and other documentations that you collected as part of the process explained above.

Overall, if you follow the above steps thoroughly, you can definitely get the debts caused by credit card fraud eliminated from your record. In this process, you may have to come across many difficult circumstances, such as arguments with credit card issuers or with the collection agents. You are strongly recommended not to fall into any such argument, as any such activity will only weaken your case. Therefore, you are strongly recommended to keep your calm while you are dealing with them. Always remember, you have the legal right not to be harassed because the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is applicable in every state of the United States of America.

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