Freezing And Unfreezing Your Credit Report
Monitoring your credit score can be stressful, especially if it is getting lower, or if it is not increasing as quickly as you would hope. Even worse, requesting credit reports too frequently can adversely affect your credit score, so the best-case scenario is just to live with the uncertainty of only finding out whether your credit score qualifies you for a loan when you apply for the loan. What is even more stressful is the thought that, in some circumstances, other people can access your credit report without your knowledge. One of the ways to stop this from happening is to freeze your credit report. A Plantation credit repair lawyer can help you with credit report freezes and other strategies to improve your credit score.
How to Freeze and Unfreeze Your Credit Report
Freezing and unfreezing your credit report is a simple process; all you have to do is to contact the major credit reporting bureaus individually and ask them to freeze your credit score. You will need to provide detailed information to verify your identity, such as your full name, date of birth, and social security number. Experian and TransUnion require you to set up a PIN early in the process of freezing your credit report, but Equifax does not. To unfreeze your credit report, simply contact the credit bureaus again; for Experian and TransUnion, you will need to provide the same PIN that you used to freeze your credit report.
Why Do People Freeze Their Credit Reports?
The main reason that people freeze their credit reports has to do with identity theft. The fewer parties that have access to your credit report, the lower your risk of someone stealing your identifying information. Of course, most cases of identity theft begin with phishing scams or breaches of business computer systems, not with unauthorized access to credit reports. The bigger protection you can get from a credit freeze is if someone has already stolen your identifying information. If your credit report is frozen, then the identity thieves will not be able to open credit card accounts in your name or otherwise use your identity to incur debts, so by freezing your credit report, you are limiting the damage that identity thieves can do to your credit score.
Who Can Access Your Credit Report While It Is Under Freeze?
Even if you have frozen your credit report, certain parties will be able to access it. For example, law enforcement will be able to access your credit report as part of a criminal investigation. Prospective employers and prospective landlords will be able to access it in the context of background checks before you get hired at a new job or get approved to rent an apartment. If your credit report is under freeze, though, prospective lenders cannot access it and check your credit report. Therefore, you will need to unfreeze your credit report when you are ready to start applying for loans again.
Contact a South Florida Debt Lawyer About Credit Report Freezes
A South Florida credit repair lawyer can advise you on the best time to freeze and unfreeze your credit reports. Contact Nowack & Olson, PLLC in Plantation, Florida to discuss your case.