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    Fraud from family

    Hello all, I am writing this to gather information for a friend of mine who recently found out she was the victim of fraud after applying for a credit card.

    She was denied due to collections in her name, but she is only 20 and has had no previous debt or lines of credit, other than a student loans. The collections are for bills that her mom put in her name before she left for college. She was never notified of the bills being put in her name, or that her mother ignored the bills and letters sent to their house. My friend never heard anything or knew about the bills until looking at her credit report. Does she have a case for disputing this with the credit report agencies? How is this situation typically handled? She has debt now for bills she has never seen.

    Thank you.

    #2
    If she wants to pursue this and clean up her record, the first thing to do is report the crime. File a police report against her mother. Contact the creditors and get copies of the original applications so she can show that the signature was forged. Then she can go to the credit agencies to contest the charges once she has documented the identity theft. She also needs to immediately put a credit freeze on her accounts to keep her mother from doing more damage.
    Steve

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      #3
      First of all, it will be better for her to talk with her mom about all these debts and ask her to clear all bills, so that your friend can apply for a credit card.

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        #4
        Originally posted by cmichstudent View Post
        Hello all, I am writing this to gather information for a friend of mine who recently found out she was the victim of fraud after applying for a credit card.

        She was denied due to collections in her name, but she is only 20 and has had no previous debt or lines of credit, other than a student loans. The collections are for bills that her mom put in her name before she left for college. She was never notified of the bills being put in her name, or that her mother ignored the bills and letters sent to their house. My friend never heard anything or knew about the bills until looking at her credit report. Does she have a case for disputing this with the credit report agencies? How is this situation typically handled? She has debt now for bills she has never seen.

        Thank you.
        This is actually a serious crime -- fraud. The only way to resolve this is going to be to go to the police.

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          #5
          Being a victim of identity theft sucks anyway, but probably more so when it's your own family member who does the stealing. How unfortunate for your friend.

          By Googling "family member commits identity theft" your friend can find some good resources and advice.

          I found this to be an excellent article: "When a family member steals your identity" at creditcards.com. As previously mentioned, this is a serious crime -- the fact that her mother was the perpetrator does not diminish its severity. It's just a bit uglier to deal with because this is her mother, after all. But like this article says, "Most creditors will not remove your name from the account and absolve you of the responsibility without a police report." Unless her mother is willing to pay everything in full and make things right, your friend may very well find that her only alternative is to press criminal charges.

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            #6
            Originally posted by peter.scott279 View Post
            First of all, it will be better for her to talk with her mom about all these debts and ask her to clear all bills, so that your friend can apply for a credit card.
            Paying off collections will not repair her credit. She should definitely report the crime and get this resolved.

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              #7
              If she didn't put a signature, it is OK, but maybe her mom asked to sign somewhere and she did it unconsciousness. She should make a verification of a signature.

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