Can inquiries be removed from your credit report?
If an inquiry is the result of fraud, it can be removed. If it is the result of a legitimate review of your credit history it cannot be removed. Inquiries are simply a record of who has looked at your credit report and are maintained for two years.
Keep in mind there are two types of inquiries on your credit report: requests viewed only by you, and requests viewed by creditors and others. Requests that are viewed only by you are shown only on your personal credit report. They cannot be viewed by others and cannot affect your credit scores. For that reason they are often referred to as soft inquiries.
Soft inquiries include requests for your own credit report, reviews by existing lenders, in order to make preapproved offers, or for insurance or employment purposes.
Requests viewed by others are the result of you initiating a transaction, for example by applying for credit. Because these inquiries are “hard data” which are a part of your credit history and can affect lending decisions and credit scores they are sometimes called hard inquiries.
Inquiries have minimal impact on credit scores, and the impact decreases rapidly over time. Inquiries alone will never be the reason a credit application is declined. Late payments, charged off accounts, collection accounts, high balances as compared to your credit limits or other more significant issues will far outweigh the impact of inquiries and must be addressed before you can significantly improve your credit worthiness.
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The “Ask Experian” team