Disputing a charge? Know your rights

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Have you ever disputed a charge on a bill – or even thought about it? If you have, you’ll want to read about the FTC’s settlement with Credit Protection Association (CPA), a Texas-based company that collects cable bills and reports accounts to credit bureaus.

Here’s what happened: people challenged their cable bills, saying that they had already paid, that the amount was wrong or that they never had service. Yet, people told the FTC, CPA kept trying to collect on inaccurate account information – even after multiple disputes. In some cases, CPA simply deleted account information after a dispute, without informing the person of the action or the results of the investigation. 

The FTC sued CPA for violating a law called the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), which gives rights to people when they dispute credit report information. According to the FTC, CPA made two big mistakes: (1) it failed to have reasonable written procedures for handling disputes and (2) it failed to inform people about the outcome of their disputes. Under the settlement, CPA will pay $72,000 in penalties. 

What does this case mean to you? When you dispute a charge, remember that the FCRA gives you certain rights, including:

  • the right to have your dispute investigated, and 
  • the right to be notified of the results of the investigation

The company has 30 days to complete both steps. That’s because you need to know whether your information has been corrected so you can make informed decisions on how to proceed.  

If you’re considering disputing a charge, read more about your rights under the FCRA. Or check out these tips on managing debt. And if you believe a company may have violated your rights, then report it to the FTC.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Comments

This is Great News it is about time we put a stop to all this , Now lets go after the Health Care Insurance Company's For ripping off every one that pays out of there own pockets for this Sorry so called Insurance

The thing is he promise me offer amount of $700.000 plus software Start Kits,So that i can,Start my owner company, business of emailing the Companies and free 90 days of FREE LEARNING,so other thing is Joing Webinar.evineng now,he still sending me emails,So how can i stop him?

You can cut down on the number of unsolicited mailings, calls, and emails you receive by learning where to go to "just say no." Please see Stopping Unsolicited Mail, Phone Calls, and Email.

I applaud this proactive move by FTC and I am a merchant. I recently sued a big bank on a commercial mortgage and the judge found that the bank altered the contract. The bank removed the lien from the property and I now own it free and clear.

Wow that's so awesome, good for you!!! We need more stories like this......

It is about time that these people start being held accountable for their actions, as for the health insurance, well thanks oba care I signed up and got the welcome packet saying g that "this does not meet the federal requirements for help insurance" so I dropped it only for that company to remove 1655.00 from my checking account alost a year later, unauthorized, not once but twice and it cost my son a trip to Japan he was supposed to go on through school....thanks Obama care!!

What about when Doctors offices get money back from your insurance company on your behalf, that is supposed to go back to you and they never give it back to you (the patient). I worked for a Doctor for 8 years and they never gave money back to the patient. They said no doctors office ever does.

The article didn't answer how the consumers that were injured were made whole? The company was fined great, but what happened to the consumers' credit scores that were wrongfully reported?

Nice

I Melissa D received a call I was accepted for a5000 I was told I had to go purchase a iTunes card and I ended up buying three cards AND lost560.00 dollars my water and lights got cut off I cried for days i was devastated2735

I was scammed the same way this week. Same exact way. They only got 230.00 from me but it has put me in a really big mess.

I do not know why the government allows these 3 major credit companies control individual's (citizen's credit ratings. these are companies that cater to other companies that do not care about our individual rights they side with other corporations, who continually do illegal acts and try to get away with it for their own profits.

All I know is when I filed a complaint against first state bank belmond ia .This was the biggest joke ever

I signed up with what I thought was credit guru you misrepresented yourself and I want my account closed and a refund as soon as possible Deborah

You can file a complaint about a business with the FTC at FTC.gov/complaint.

The messages you post here on the blog do not go into the complaint database that law enforcement uses for investigations.

Thanks for sharing this advice expecially when you have become a victim in the past and present of fraud.I was a victim of fraud but, Im truly very blessed to have your help and advice on how to prevent this from happening again. Just dont like to be a victim of fraudulent activity on my accounts and stuff especially when I'm disabled and I do my best to reach out to people that are in need with all kinds of disabilities and illnesses of any kind.

Thank's to you All who work with FTC I appreciate everything you do for all of us especially during this diffucut time of year. Truly appreciate to all who is with the fhelping thinghelping thing to your stuff and your your advice! I have changed my account with my bank card and I would be always getting alerts for any fraudulent activity on my account and also I think it's the best thing for other people to take advantage of especially now I lost my atmosphere card over the holiday and I did file a police report and they did help me out so thanks you guys I appreciate everything.

The only thing now is I've been having a lot of activity on my Facebook account and I haven't been on my account after my significant other who passed away passed away due to the loss I really don't know what to do right now because I not only have my photo of Mt loved one's but I always support awareness for multiple sclerosis and cancer and I also support all kinds of disabilities I'm a demand for support groups especially for mental illness and people who lost loved ones I reach out to them so hopefully everything will work out not sure I reached out but still haven't gone anywhere yet!

JUST WANTED TO SAY THANK YOU TO ALL THE PEOPLE WHOSE WORKING AND ALWAYS GIVE GOOD ADVICE TO HELP ME UNDERSTAND MORE TO protect myself from becoming a victim again a fraud and anyone else who has gone through this is well special thanks to all of you AND ANYONE else who HAS BEEN A VICTIM OF FRAUD OR ANY KIND OF IDENTITY Theft. I truly would recommend FTC to anyone who has BEEN A VICTIM OF FRAUD. I TRULY APPRECIATE All TIME AND SUPPORT THAT YOU HAVE DONE FOR ME AND EVERYONE ELSE TO PROTECT THE FROM THIS,BECAUSE OF ALL YOUR HELPING US ALL WHO HAVE BEEN VICTIM'S AND WITH YOUR ADVICE ON HOW TO PREVENT THIS FROM HAPPENING AGAIN. JUST HOW MUCH HOW REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR HELP AND ADVICE.TO ALL LAW ENFORCEMENT AND FRAUD DEPARTMENTS MAKING SURE THAT WE WON'T BE A VICTIM AGAIN AND MORE IMPORTANTLY MAKING SURE THAT THIS IS GOING TO MAKE A CHANGE FOR THE POSITIVE on the economy because of you guys thank you again

If anyone out there is having trouble with Comcast, like having the price go up while in the middle of an existing deal with them. Please please respond! Cause I'm fed up and going to take them on. Any and all info is appreciated. I just know I'm not the only one, but I'm not sure how far it goes.

Credit reporting agencies are getting away with violations of FCRA. I have filed complaints with CFPB and nothing is getting done. Accounts are still Inaccurate, incomplete and unfairly depicted. They use the BS clause of the FCRA and FACR Act and so they can avoid proper investigations and removal of Trade Marks with errors.

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