Identity Theft

Consumer Identity Theft Attorneys Serving All of North Carolina

Identity theft is a problem that has grown to epidemic proportions in the last several years.   With the advent of the internet, and the anonymity it affords to identity thieves, it is easier than ever to become the victim of identity theft, and harder than ever to catch the perpetrators.  Although there is often little or no recourse against the actual thieves, since they are rarely caught, the most that can be done is to limit the fallout from the event. That is where we come in, helping North Carolina consumers recover from identity theft and assist them with the labyrinth of rules and regulations surrounding fair credit reporting of the erroneous information on consumer credit reports.

There are very few attorneys in the state of North Carolina that understand these rules and regulations, as they do not deal with them on a regular basis. We can help you understand your rights after becoming the victim of identity theft, and can provide the means to fight back against credit reporting agencies and businesses that are reporting inaccurate information on your credit report.

You Need An Advocate

You need and deserve nothing less than an effective advocate who understands the complexities of the Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, the federal statute that provides remedies for victims of identity theft who cannot get the credit reporting agencies to investigate and remove inaccurate credit items from your report.  At Norris Law Firm, PLLC, we understand what you are going through, and can put our legal expertise to work for you.

                                                                                                 Are you the Victim of Identity Theft?

If you have experienced any of the below, it is possible that you have been a victim of identity theft:

  • Unknown credit accounts have popped up on your credit report.
  • You have been receiving mail or pre-approved credit offers with someone else’s name at your home or office.
  • Companies that you have not done business with or applied to for credit have been looking at your credit report.
  • Debt collectors have started sending you collection notices for accounts you do not have.
  • Your credit report lists an alias name or address that you have never used.
  • You have received bills, statements, or other account information in the mail relating to accounts you didn’t open.

However, in most instances you cannot know for certain if you have been a victim of identity theft until you have received all the documents relating to the information that is harming you. Any of the above could have occurred by mistake.

The credit grantors (banks, financing companies, etc.) regularly make mistakes about the identity of their own customers, including their social security numbers, names, and other identification information. And credit bureaus regularly make credit report errors, confusing consumers with each other, mixing and merging credit information inappropriately, and attributing credit information to people who have no relation to the accounts in question.

Since consumers rarely have conclusive proof of identity theft, they should never execute any “identity theft affidavit” or “fraud affidavit” until they have seen the actual application which is believed to be forged. Likewise, consumers should never execute those affidavits without consulting an attorney first.

How Can Identity Theft Hurt Me?

Identity theft can cause a variety of problems with credit reports and debt collectors. The people taking your identity can open credit cards in your name and run up huge charges, ruining your credit rating and making future purchases impossible. Insurance companies use lower credit scores to justify higher rates. You may even be denied employment or fired from your job because of false information in your credit history. And you could suffer serious harassment by debt collection agencies.

Even after you discover the theft, corporate predators may have you take actions that are counter-productive and will hurt your ability to recover your identity and the compensation you deserve for going through the whole ordeal.

What to Do

If you are or suspect that you are a victim of identity theft, and want to put your problem to an end, learn your rights, prepare your case, and fight back!

If you are a victim of identity theft, you may have rights under the revised Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).  This law entitles you to free annual copies of your credit file (your credit reports) and allows you to place a fraud block in your credit file.  Doing so notifies all potential creditors that someone has been using your identity and warns them not to extend further credit without proof that they are actually dealing with you and not the identity thief.

The Dangers of Disputing an Item

Second, if you dispute an item on your credit report directly to the creditor and claim identity theft, you open yourself up to an open-ended inquiry from that creditor. Under the revisions to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), consumers must provide all information requested by the creditor if there is a credit reporting dispute. This means that by disputing an identity theft item directly to a creditor, you may be required to provide information that is not already in the possession of that creditor, information which can be used to further harass you or destroy your credit.

Starting a Lawsuit

You may end up having to launch a lawsuit to get what you deserve. In order to start a case you will need all the documents that relate to the dispute and all the documents that relate to your damages. You also need to gather any copies of your credit report that are available, including copies that you have received or that anyone else has received (including a mortgage broker, car dealer, or insurance agent). If you have received any letters denying you credit you should gather those letters which will help establish your damages.

Before Anything Else, Contact Us

Think twice and be sure you are victim of identity theft before sitting down to write letters.  At Norris Law Firm, PLLC, we help people who have already tried to remedy their situation by themselves, but have been unsuccessful.  Don’t go it alone – contact us for a free initial telephone consultation.

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Office Location

RALEIGH
1033 Bullard Court, Suite 207
Raleigh, NC 27615
Phone:  (919) 981-447
Fax:  (919) 926-1676
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