In the past decade the credit bureaus unethical, borderline illegal, means of handing disputes online and reducing all disputes to a simple code have been highly questioned. Not only are these methods challenged by consumers, but attorneys and even elected government officials have gotten involved to challenge the bureaus on these tactics.
TransUnion procedures were elaborated upon in this deposition of an employee who performed dispute processing¾that is, before her job was outsourced to a vendor in India:
Q. [If the] consumer says, “Dispute this credit card account, here’s the account number, it belongs to my husband, not to me, what would you have done if you were complying with TransUnion procedures in August 5?
A. I would dispute the account with the appropriate claim code.
Q. How would you do that?
A. In the computer. [. . .] I would click on the account and select the appropriate claim code. Once you hit okay, it says open, which means the dispute on that account has been opened.
Q. After you put the dispute code and click on the dispute, do you have any other role in the investigation or dispute process for that account?
Q. It just gets sent onto the creditor, and your job as to that dispute is done, right?
Q. It would be fair to say that if you were complying with TransUnion’s policies, you’re not as an investigator or as a dispute processor making any judgment calls or exercising any discretion about whether a consumer really owns the account? [. . .] You’re not exercising that discretion?
A. No. [. . .]
Q. How does TransUnion instruct its employees to process the dispute?
A. In the system.
Q. By taking the consumer’s dispute, summarizing it into a claim or dispute code, inputting that into the system and sending that code to the creditor?
Q. Is there any other part of an investigation besides that that TransUnion has instructed its employees is required?
By breaking all disputes down into simple codes the bureaus have found a great way to bypass a real investigation and not give the consumer the true rights they are afforded under the FCRA.
Keep this in mind as you continue to fight the credit correction battles with your clients and are exposed to the monster computers like e-OSCAR and OCR that the bureaus so commonly use.
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