What is an Identity Theft Affidavit?
The identity theft affidavit serves as a tool devised by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) – with the help of credit grantors, consumer advocates and banks – to be able to make it easier for identity theft victims to clear their names. This affidavit also serves as a standard form of document to be submitted to companies when reporting identity theft cases. This affidavit developed is accepted by different financial companies, banks, credit issuers and retailers. Filling out an identity theft affidavit will help a victim inform companies that a fraudulent act has been committed using the the victim’s name.
When Should You File an Identity Theft Affidavit?
As soon as you become aware that a new financial account has been opened or a fraudulent financial transaction has been made using your identity, fill out the identity theft affidavit form. Thus, you can inform the companies that you are not responsible for these fraudulent acts. Some companies consider the use of this affidavit optional. Beforehand, it is imperative that you make sure to contact the company where you plan to submit it and ask if they accept such a document. There are companies who would request that a separate form be filled out aside from the identity theft affidavit. By submitting this affidavit, you will be able to help the company or the authorities conduct an immediate investigation regarding the fraudulent act.
Filling Out the Two Parts of The Identity Theft Affidavit
The identity theft affidavit consists of two parts. The first part is where you are going to input all the relevant general information about you and the person who stole your identity. The second part of the affidavit is where you are going to describe the fraudulent accounts opened or transactions incurred using your name. Please note that you have to fill out a separate second part of the identity theft affidavit (the Fraudulent Account Statement) for each company where you plan to submit the document. The identity theft affidavit must be submitted along with photocopies of supporting documents that you have. The supporting documents may include a photocopy of your drivers license, the police report that you have and any other pertinent papers as proof that you are not the one who is responsible for such fraudulent accounts.
The Importance of Accuracy When Filling Out the Identity Theft Affidavit
It is also important to note that before you send the document to different companies you have to first review the information you wrote there in the presence of your family members or any other person who also has access to your account. This is to ensure the veracity of the information you wrote in the identity theft affidavit. This document also needs to be accomplished at the soonest time possible. Keep in mind that delaying the completion and submission of this affidavit may also lead to the delay of the investigation. Although you have the right to not provide all the information requested in the identity theft affidavit, lacking the necessary details will only slow down the entire process of investigation.
If for some reason you do not have the capability to complete the affidavit, ask for help from your legal guardian to complete said document for you. In the absence of a legal guardian, you may also ask a family member, relative or anybody else with power of attorney to do it for you.