Really, Credit Bureaus, I'm Not Dead

John wants to know how he can convince the world that he’s not dead. He writes:

I have been battling with a silly preconception the federal government has concerning my status as a deceased person, that causes them to routinely shut down credit cards that I am using, and stresses my ability to build credit. (All this despite being actively enlisted in the US Navy)…

I have managed to track this anomaly down to TranUnion, Equifax, and Experian having records of my death, and that these originated from Best Buy of all places, with whom I held an account with, and subsequently canceled. (Who knew the penalty was doom?) I do not know which exactly of the three I should contact, or all three, and more importantly I was wondering if you knew of the proper format, or a template I could fill out and mass/mail to these three companies, before the damage to my credit keeps me from getting a home?

Hi John,

You need to contact all three of them. You can do this online for free by going through There’s links at each of the bureaus for disputing items on your credit report. Follow them and the instructions and let them know that reports of your death are greatly exaggerated.