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Request & Check Your Specialty Reports Annually

Posted By Jim On 05/26/2009 @ 6:38 am In Personal Finance | 17 Comments

Most people are now aware that they can get a copy of their credit history from each of the three major credit bureaus every twelve months. We can thank the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) for that right (which you can exercise by going to annualcreditreport.com [3]). What most people aren’t aware of is that the FCRA also gives you the same level access for other “specialty” reports as well. There are several companies that don’t create “credit” reports but do collect your data into what are commonly referred to as special reports. Fortunately, you are afforded the same rights to those reports as well!

This opinion from the FTC was issued on September 15th, 1999 [4] and covers which companies are considered consumer reporting agencies:

Section 603(f) defines a “consumer reporting agency” as any person “which, for monetary fees, dues, or on a cooperative nonprofit basis, regularly engages in whole or in part in the practice of assembling or evaluating consumer credit information or other information … for the purpose of furnishing consumer reports to third parties …”. In turn, Section 603(d) defines a “consumer report” as the communication of “any information” by a CRA that bears on a consumer’s “credit worthiness, credit standing, credit capacity, character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living” that is “used or expected to be used or collected in whole or in part” for the purpose of serving as a factor in establishing eligibility for credit or insurance to be used primarily for personal, family, or household purposes, employment purposes, or any other purpose authorized under Section 604.

So, what are some good specialty reports can you get?

  • The most meaty of reports comes from LexisNexis’s ChoicePoint system, where you can get a Full File Disclosure [5] which contains insurance (CLUE reports & insurance carrier reports), employment background checks (if one was ordered), criminal records information, and rental history reports.
  • You can request a copy of your LexisNexis Accurint Person Report [6] which contains a wealth of information, including voter registration, possible associates, property (aircraft, watercrafts!) owned, etc. You can see a sample Accurint Person Report here [7].
  • ChexSystems collects information for a Consumer Report that includes check cashing information, such as any records of NSF fees (non-sufficient funds fee) and returned checks. You can see a sample ChexSystems Consumer Report here. [8]
  • ISO A-PLUS loss-history report [9] contains information about your loss history (basically your insurance claims), as you probably expected.
  • The Medical Information Bureau collects your medical and prescription drug history for their reports and you can get a copy of that by filing a request at their website [10].

There are plenty of other consumer reporting agencies and if you want full instructions on every single report out there, hop on over to the specialty reports page at the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse [11]. As is the case with credit reports. you want to check these to make sure the information they have on file for you is accurate and correct.

Time to make some requests!

(Photo: athena1970 [12])

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[2] Email: mailto:?subject=http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/request-check-your-specialty-reports-annually.html

[3] annualcreditreport.com: https://www.annualcreditreport.com/cra/index.jsp

[4] opinion from the FTC was issued on September 15th, 1999: http://www.ftc.gov/os/statutes/fcra/sum.shtm

[5] Full File Disclosure: http://www.choicepoint.com/consumer/all_products.html

[6] LexisNexis Accurint Person Report: http://www.lexisnexis.com/privacy/for-consumers/request-personal-information.aspx

[7] sample Accurint Person Report here: https://w3.lexis.com/consumeraccess2.0/sample/person_report.htm

[8] sample ChexSystems Consumer Report here.: https://www.consumerdebit.com/consumerinfo/us/en/chexsystems/SampleChexCnsrRpt.pdf

[9] ISO A-PLUS loss-history report: http://www.iso.com/Products/A-PLUS/Consumers-Order-Your-Free-A-PLUS-Loss-History-Report.html

[10] filing a request at their website: http://www.mib.com/html/request_your_record.html

[11] specialty reports page at the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse: http://www.privacyrights.org/fs/fs6b-SpecReports.htm

[12] athena1970: http://www.flickr.com/photos/athena1970/2352617993/sizes/m/

Thank you for reading!