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Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft

Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft

State LawsMany states

State LawsMany states have passed laws making identity theft a crime or providing helpin recovery from identity theft; others are considering such legislation. Wherespecific criminal identity theft laws do not exist, the practices may be prohibitedunder other laws. Contact your state Attorney General (for a list of state offices,visit www.naag.org) or local consumer protection agency for laws related toidentity theft, or visit www.consumer.gov/idtheft.36 Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft

INSTRUCTIONS FOR COMPLETINGTHE ID THEFT AFFIDAVITTo make certain that you do not become responsible for any debts incurredby an identity thief, you must prove to each of the companies where accountswere opened or used in your name that you didn’t create the debt.A group of credit grantors, consumer advocates, and attorneys at the FederalTrade Commission (FTC) developed an ID Theft Affidavit to make it easier forfraud victims to report information. While many companies accept this affidavit,others require that you submit more or different forms. Before you send theaffidavit, contact each company to find out if they accept it.It will be necessary to provide the information in this affidavit anywhere a newaccount was opened in your name. The information will enable the companies toinvestigate the fraud and decide the outcome of your claim. If someone madeunauthorized charges to an existing account, call the company for instructions.This affidavit has two parts:• Part One — the ID Theft Affidavit — is where you report general informationabout yourself and the theft.• Part Two — the Fraudulent Account Statement — is where you describethe fraudulent account(s) opened in your name. Use a separate FraudulentAccount Statement for each company you need to write to.When you send the affidavit to the companies, attach copies (NOT originals)of any supporting documents (for example, driver’s license or police report).Before submitting your affidavit, review the disputed account(s) with familymembers or friends who may have information about the account(s) or accessto them.Complete this affidavit as soon as possible. Many creditors ask that you sendit within two weeks. Delays on your part could slow the investigation.Be as accurate and complete as possible. You may choose not to provide some of theinformation requested. However, incorrect or incomplete information will slow theprocess of investigating your claim and absolving the debt. Print clearly.When you have finished completing the affidavit, mail a copy to each creditor,bank, or company that provided the thief with the unauthorized credit, goods,or services you describe. Attach a copy of the Fraudulent Account Statementwith information only on accounts opened at the institution to which you aresending the packet, as well as any other supporting documentation you areable to provide.Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft 37

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