Managing CRO Dispute Volumes

Change on the Horizon

Pave your way to smoother management of CRO-generated dispute volumes with a process that quickly identifies the dispute source and reduces future dispute submissions from Credit Repair Organizations (CRO).

Ruling “Against” CROs May Reduce Strain on Data Furnishers

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that Experian did not violate FCRA in their response to a consumer’s dispute (court case: Warner v. Experian). Experian had advised the consumer they would take no further action on the dispute unless contacted directly rather than through the CRO engaged by the consumer.

Ruling for Experian takes a cut at the pervasive CROs and provides opportunity for institutions to better manage the onslaught of repetitive disputes submitted by CROs.

Quickly Identify and Manage CRO Disputes

With the staggering volume of CRO letters, this ruling offers direction to dispute teams: streamline the process with a Specialty Handling Unit and establish end-to-end processes to help identify CRO disputes and respond appropriately.

5 Keys to Successful Specialty Disputes Management

Design a specialty handling process that establishes a customer focused approach applying a series of key steps.  The process requires active engagement across the enterprise and includes the dispute processing teams, compliance and legal.

The primary components to working CRO disputes must include:

1.  Dispute Notification and Review to Identify if CRO Related

  • Review letterhead and signature line for CRO, check online to verify. When in doubt, investigate using a trained specialist.
  • Research account for multiple letters with similar content and wording.

TIP: If CRO and a repeat dispute, conduct a specialty handling reasonable investigation.

2.  Reasonable Investigation – to Qualify by a Specialty Disputes

  • Review content and reason for the dispute.
  • Review all relevant information provided by the CRO (e.g., customer documents, letters, CRA notes, dispute code).
  • Determine if the customer’s internal account data is accurate.
  • Confirm if the dispute has been:
    • Submitted previously
    • Substantially the same as a prior submission
    • Originated from a CRO, not the consumer

3.  Customer Communication to Reduce Misunderstandings

  • Make a shift away from vague, canned letters:
    • Make a phone call to the customer to communicate directly, obtaining instant clarification and reducing resolution time.
    • Prepare enhanced and targeted letters – strengthen letters with specific information required and include an option of calling an agent directly to discuss the dispute.

4.  Operational Reporting to Help Drive Resolution

Identify and deploy trends and primary drivers for repeat disputes by CROs.

Critical reports:

  • Repeat disputes within 120 days
  • Multiple disputes within 120 days
  • Confirmed CRO submitted disputes
  • Disputes identified as insufficient information from the consumer
  • Disputes with additional information provided by the consumer

TIP: Assign a dedicated team to conduct root cause analysis of customer issues. Focus on frequency of disputes and if a one-time occurrence or multiple submissions

5.  Training – Strengthen Skills to Improve Efficiency

Restructure training to focus on repeat disputes and CRO submissions to improve processing and reduce repeats.

Training structure:

  • Content training for specialty disputes processing from CROs.
  • Critical thinking, issue identification and problem solving, including case studies.
  • Investigation assessment and consistency.
  • Effective communication, verbal and written.

Increase efficiency of Managing CRO-generated Disputes with our Help

Organizations are overwhelmed with trying to manage increased dispute volumes.  There are specific and reasonable actions that can be taken to advance your organization’s dispute management processes. Bridgeforce has developed disputes processes and procedures, workflows, trained staff, and written disputes policies. Let us help you. Contact us for guidance on successfully executing your dispute management.

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