Identity theft wears many different faces. From credit cards to student loans, thieves can open different forms of credit in your name and just like that, destroy your credit history and financial standing.
If this happens to you, getting the situation fixed can be difficult and time-consuming. But you can set things right.
If someone took out a loan in your name, it’s important to take action right away to prevent further damage to your credit. Follow these steps to protect yourself and get rid of the fraudulent accounts.
1. File a police report
The first thing you should do is file a police report with your local police department. You might be able to do this online. In many cases, you will be required to submit a police report documenting the theft in order for lenders to remove the fraudulent loans from your account. (See also: 9 Signs Your Identity Was Stolen)
2. Contact the lender
If someone took out a loan or opened a credit card in your name, contact the lender or credit card company directly to notify them of the fraudulent account and to have it removed from your credit report. For credit cards and even personal loans, the problem can usually be resolved quickly.
When it comes to student loans, identity theft can have huge consequences for the victim. Failure to pay a student loan can result in wage garnishment, a suspended license, or the government seizing your tax refund — so it’s critical that you cut any fraudulent activity off at the pass and get the loans discharged quickly.
In general, you’ll need to contact the lender who issued the student loan and provide them with a police report. The lender will also ask you to complete an identity theft report. While your application for discharge is under review, you…
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