How to fix a mistake on your credit file

Is there something incorrect on your credit report? Here’s what to do.

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Checked your credit score and think that something doesn't look quite right? There might be a mistake on your credit file. Take a good look through your credit report and if you see a mistake like an incorrect default, fraudulent credit card applications, or incorrect address, you can fix it quick-smart. Simply get in touch with your credit bureau with the proof of mistake, and they'll fix it up for you.

You can check your credit report for free with finder and check it at any time in your finder account. We'll also let you know if something on your report changes.

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Why is there a mistake on my credit file?

You may have a mistake on your credit report because the information is:

  • Inaccurate. Wrong loan amounts or a misspelled name.
  • Out-of-date. All listings have an expiry so check that they are still valid.
  • Incomplete. Once you pay a default, the listing should change to recognise this.
  • Irrelevant. Information not relating to your creditworthiness.
  • Misleading. Information that doesn’t reflect your true ability to have and pay for credit.

How do I check my credit report for errors?

The first step is to request a copy of your credit file, which you can do for free with finder. The credit report you receive when requesting it through finder will be delivered through Experian and you'll receive it in a few minutes.

You can also get a free copy of your credit file once every 12 months or within 90 days of having a credit application rejected if you'd prefer to request it directly from a credit bureau. You will receive it within 10 days.

Once you have your credit file it will include the following information:

  • Debts or loans. Check that each debt is yours and that the amounts are correct.
  • Defaults. Defaults can only be listed for debts over $150 that are overdue by 60 days. Creditors must also inform you in writing before listing a debt as a default, so check that you received notification.
  • Serious credit infringements. A serious credit infringement can only be listed six months after it is listed as a default and only if the debtor is unable to contact you at your last known address. Make sure the creditor took the correct action before listing.
  • Credit applications. Make sure the applications listed were made by you. If they weren’t, someone may be using your identity to apply for loans and you need to address it right away.
  • Name and date of birth. Make sure both are accurate.
  • Current and previous addresses. Being contactable is essential to maintaining a good credit file, so make sure your details are up to date.

What to do if there's an error on your credit file

You can report an error to any credit reporting body or creditor. Credit reporting bodies are obliged to investigate reported errors regardless of who made the listing. The responsibility is on the credit reporting bodies to prove that the listing is valid. Here are some steps to follow if you find an error:

  • Check your own records. Make sure that there really is an error. Don’t just assume that direct debits were taken out of your account or that a property manager paid all your bills. Confirm it on your bank statements.
  • Gather information. Depending on the type of inaccuracy or listing you may need to gather some documentary evidence to justify your claim.
  • Lodge a request for correction. You can request a correction from either the credit bureau or the credit provider directly:
    • Contact the credit provider that listed the mistake. For example, if there is a credit card listed on your report as a current credit account but you have closed the credit card, you can contact the card provider to have it removed.
    • Contact the credit bureau directly. If the credit provider does not remove it or you would prefer to deal with the credit bureau, you also have that option. Contact the bureau you ordered your report from and they will be able to help you remove the listing. If you order your credit report from finder the credit bureau is Experian.
  • Escalate the issue. If the creditor or credit reporting body does not respond to your initial request to correct an error, you can start the external dispute resolution process for that organisation. Alternatively, you can make a complaint to the credit reporting regulator, the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

What mistakes might I find on my credit report?

Here are some common mistakes you may find in your credit file:

  • Incorrect address. This is a simple error that can occur if you move house frequently.
  • Incorrect default. This may be listed due to a processing error on the bill collectors' behalf. It can happen if you use third-party services to pay bills (eg, a property manager) or if a credit card expires.
  • An expired listing. Defaults only stay on your credit file for five years, after which they expire. Make sure that any legitimate listings are not beyond their expiry date.
  • Fraudulent credit applications. If your identity has been stolen it may have been used to apply for loans or services. You may find multiple applications, or even loans or unpaid services that you never applied for.

How can I keep my credit file free from errors?

The simplest way to keep your credit file error-free is to check it regularly. If you request your credit report through finder you can access it again at any time in your finder account. We will also notify you whenever something on your report changes so you can keep an eye out for inaccuracies.

You also need to make sure that all payments and debits actually go through, don’t just rely on someone else or automatic transfers to pay your bills. Physically check to see if the money has left your account.

Your credit report is important and it should be checked regularly for accuracy. If you find a genuine mistake it is relatively simple to have it rectified by any of the credit reporting bodies. Doing so will help ensure that you’re treated fairly by lenders.

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8 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    ToulaApril 16, 2019

    I want to know why I only scored 800 not 1000.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeniApril 18, 2019Staff

      Hi Toula,

      Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

      Your credit score is influenced by a range of factors like the age of your credit report, the older your credit report is the more positively it impacts your credit score over time. Your current score of 800 is still in Experian’s Excellent bracket. Please contact Experian directly if you wish to know more about your credit score.

      You can find out more about what increases and decreases your credit score from our guide to Experian score.

      I hope this helps.

      Thank you and have a wonderful day!


    Default Gravatar
    KathleenNovember 11, 2018

    Hi, on your site you state that “You can report an error to any credit reporting body or creditor. Credit reporting bodies are obliged to investigate reported errors regardless of who made the listing. The responsibility is on the credit reporting bodies to prove that the listing is valid. Here are some steps to follow if you find an error:” I reported to you the incorrect listing of a Latitude Finance loan and was informed to take it up with them. Why? Its your error. Thanks

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JohnNovember 12, 2018Staff

      Hi Kathleen,

      Thank you for reaching out to finder.

      finder gets your credit information straight from Experian, who is one of the credit reporting agencies. If an error has been made on your credit report, you would need to reach out to the credit reporting agencies to have the correction made. Hope this helps!


    Default Gravatar
    SherylAugust 9, 2018

    I was sent an email that says something has changed on my credit report. What was charged: new credit enquiry/enquiries added. Nothing has changed since I first got my first credit score.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JhezAugust 9, 2018Staff

      Hello Sheryl,

      Thank you for your comment.

      You would be fine if you’ll request an updated credit report to see what’s changed. If there are changes and new entries on your report, best to validate them.

      If you feel that there’s a mistake on your credit file, you may contact the lender or the provider. You can also file a request for an investigation to the credit reporting agency. They need to determine if these defaults could really be taken out. Each credit bureau has its own standard process for doing this so it may vary per credit reporting agency.

      Additionally, you may then consult a credit repair specialist for advice on how to go about removing the default. You can go through our guide on how to remove defaults on your file. I hope this helps.

      Should you wish to have real-time answers to your questions, try our chatbox on the lower right corner of our page.


    Default Gravatar
    LisaApril 24, 2017

    I have a score of 883 what does this mean?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      DeeApril 24, 2017Staff

      Hi Lisa,

      Thanks for your question.

      Your score falls under the Excellent (800-1000) bracket.

      Experian’s credit scoring range/band looks this way:

      Excellent: 800-1,000
      Very good: 700-799
      Good: 625-699
      Fair: 550-624
      Weak: 0-549

      This means that adverse events are highly unlikely to happen within the next 12 months when compared to the average Australian. The odds of no adverse events occurring on your credit file in the next 12 months are five times better than the population average and you are in the top percentile range (81-100%).

      For more information on what your credit score means, you can check our helpful Experian credit score guide.


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