Make sure it's free!
Chances are that you have seen advertisements on television, on the internet or heard on the radio about free credit reports. Chances are that these advertisements are offering you the potential to obtain your credit report free by selling you some type of service and offering the credit report as a "bonus".
While this method of advertising free credit reports is generally legitimate, there is no need for any consumer to pay for or purchase services that provide them with a free credit report. The Consumer Protection Laws offer all consumers the ability to obtain their credit reports free of charge under two specific circumstances. These are:
- Annual credit report - Every consumer is entitled to receive one (1) free annual credit report from each of the three credit reporting agencies on an annual basis;
- Rejection from any company - For consumers who have been turned down for a loan, credit card or been otherwise informed their credit was reviewed and they were rejected for a job, apartment or other services are entitled to a free copy of their credit reports.
Before you request your free credit report, you will be required to have some basic information available. Personal information includes name (plus maiden name where applicable), current address (and prior address if less than 2 years), telephone number and employer name.
Requesting via Internet
To request your free annual credit report online, consumers should go to the website that was set up by the credit reporting agencies called "Annual Credit Report". This is the only legitimate site for claiming your free annual report.
Individuals with visual impairments may request their free annual credit reports in Braille, Large Print or Audio Format by telephone, toll free, 877-322-8228
All users will first have to select their state from the drop down box on the main page. Once this data is submitted, you will be taken to a second screen which appears in the manner you see on the side image.