Lawsuit Investigation: Paying for a Copy of Your Credit Score

Berger & Montague is investigating a potential class action lawsuit on behalf of anyone who paid to receive a copy of their credit score.

What is a credit score?

Your credit score is a three-digit number generated by a mathematical algorithm using information in your credit report. It is designed to predict risk; specifically, the likelihood that you will become delinquent on your credit obligations within 24 months after generating your credit score.

Credit reports contain information about your bill payment history, loans, current debt, and other financial information. They show where you work and live and whether you’ve ever been sued, arrested, or filed for bankruptcy. Credit reports help lenders decide whether or not to extend your credit or approve a loan and determine what interest rate they will charge you. Prospective employers, insurers, and rental property owners may also look at your credit report.

Can I get my credit score and report for free?

Yes. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires each of the nationwide credit reporting companies—Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion—to provide you with a free copy of your credit report, at your request, once every 12 months.

Only one website is authorized to fill orders for the free annual credit report you are entitled to under law—annualcreditreport.com. Other websites that claim to offer free credit reports, free credit scores, or free credit monitoring are not part of the legally mandated free annual credit report program. In some cases, the “free” product that’s promised comes with strings attached. For example, some websites sign you up for a “free” service that converts to a paid service after an initial trial period.

How can I tell if a credit score website is legitimate?

Some imposter websites use terms such as “free report” in their names, while others have URLs that purposely misspell annualcreditreport.com, hoping that you will mistype the name of the official site. Additionally, some of these imposter sites direct you to other websites that try to sell you something or collect your personal information.

Annualcreditreport.com and the nationwide credit reporting companies will not send you an email asking for your personal information. If you receive an email, see a pop-up ad, or get a phone call from someone claiming to be from annualcreditreport.com or any of the three nationwide credit reporting companies, do not reply or click on any link in the message. It’s probably a scam.

If you were charged by a company in order to receive a copy of your credit score or report, contact Berger & Montague. You may be able to file a class action lawsuit.

Do I have to pay any fees to the attorney?

It is always free to speak with us. Berger & Montague’s class action cases are typically litigated on a contingency fee basis, so plaintiffs and the class do not pay any attorney’s fees or court costs unless there is a recovery.

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