Credit Agency Response Period – How Long Do I Wait?

The credit bureaus are somewhat of a lifeline to your credit score. They’re also the entities that you need to take up errors on your credit report with. It’s estimated that as many as one out of every three Americans has an error on their credit report, errors which can negatively impact one’s score and purchasing ability. However, it’s possible to dispute negative items or errors on a credit report, a process that consists of corresponding via mail.

But just how long does it take to hear back from the credit bureaus on such issues? Here’s a timeline of what you can expect for the credit agency response period:


Credit Agency Response Period – How long does it take?

  • After your initial mailing, you should initially hear back from the credit bureaus within a couple of weeks. However, this initial response is usually not a resolution to the issue you presented. Generally, it’s more of a confirmation that they’ve received your correspondence and are investigating the matter. (You might also choose to send the letter with a return receipt requested so you can confirm that it was received.) It’s worth noting that a credit bureau has to respond to your inquiry within 30 days, or they must remove the negative item listed, per Fair Credit Reporting Act regulations.
  • A credit bureau’s investigation cycle, including mailing of the findings, usually takes about 45 days.

While you certainly want the credit bureau to respond informing you that they’re investigating your dispute, that’s not always the case. They may also respond citing your dispute as frivolous or irrelevant, or send you a rejection letter.


As you can see, getting a negative item from your credit report removed is not something that happens quickly – these things take time. So if you believe that there’s an error on your report that will raise your credit score enough so that you qualify for low-interest financing following removal, be sure that your expectations match reality. You can’t dispute the item one day and then apply for a mortgage or car loan the next and expect things to have been sorted out. Hence, be sure that you periodically check your credit report so that you can sniff out errors sooner.