Filing for bankruptcy is a personal decision. Many people find that it is the best way to handle their debt and try to get their finances back on track, but they usually prefer to make that decision for themselves. An Ohio bank recently reported to credit bureaus that some of their customers had filed for bankruptcy when, actually, the customers had not made that decision at all.
Fifth Third Bank has admitted to making the mistake months ago but has only recently begun to notify customers of the error. The bank says that it made a system change in October 2013. The errors were discovered in November and corrected in their system in December. The bank reported to the credit reporting bureaus Experian, Innovis, Equifax and TransUnion that the customers had filed for bankruptcy. Needless to say, customers are in shock, wondering how the report will affect their credit rating.
The bank says it has notified each of the credit reporting agencies of the error. However, those who have had a problem getting an error corrected on a credit report may have little faith in the bank’s assurance that the problem has been corrected. The bank’s opinion is that the letter sent to customers about the error should be sufficient proof for the credit bureaus to address any related mistakes made on the customers’ credit report.
People who file for bankruptcy are usually aware by the time they make the decision that their credit score will be impacted in some way. Working with a skilled Ohio bankruptcy attorney may also give them a chance to learn how to go on to rebuild their credit and improve their financial situation. If someone has survived the country’s financial crisis, they may not need the assistance of the bankruptcy court or a bankruptcy attorney, but if they do, it should be their decision, not the result of an error.
Source: WDTN.com, “Fifth Third mistakenly reports bankruptcy filings for customers,” Natalie Tendall, Feb. 14, 2014