Doctors and medical offices don’t report your unpaid bills to the credit reporting agencies. They send them to bill collection agencies and they report your debt. Once reported, the unpaid medical debt may negatively impact your credit score making it drop 50 to 100 points. Whether paid or not, the medical debt reported will stay on your credit report for up to 7 years.
The credit reporting agencies tell us that your Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for up to 10 years. However, what many people don’t know is that approximately 2 years after filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy, your credit score will improve if you maintain a good bill payment record. Additionally, you may be able to acquire new credit cards after the 2 year period.
Your bad credit isn’t just a nuisance; it will impact every area of your life. When you finally decide to take matters into your own hands and fix your credit problems, many areas of your life will improve.
Luckily, these days there are a lot of options for proactive and hands-on folks who want to take back control of their financial lives. While there are many DIY credit repair options out there, getting professional help can walk you through the sheer volume of necessary procedures which can be overwhelming — not to mention being sure you’re getting the right information.
That’s why we’ve put together a simple plan to get you back on the right financial track. Call or email us for a quick chat to see if we can put a plan in place to reduce your stress and get your credit score higher than ever.
When it comes to credit reporting, you must know your rights. Here is an overview of the Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act
Your rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act include:
- You have the right to receive a copy of your credit report. The copy of your report must contain all of the information in your file at the time of your request.
- If you contest the completeness or accuracy of information in your report, you may file a dispute with the CRA and with the company that furnished the information to the CRA. Generally both the CRA and the furnisher of information are legally obligated to reinvestigate your dispute as long as it is not frivolous.
- CRA’s must correct or remove inaccurate, incomplete or unverifiable information in their files. CRA’s must remove obsolete information in their files.
- If you are a victim of identity theft or are on active duty with the military, you have more rights under the FCRA.
- Only those with a permitted purpose or with your express permission may access your file.
- Generally employers must have your express written permission to obtain your report.
- Any company that denies your application, or takes an adverse action against you, based on information obtained from a CRA, must inform you of the adverse action and must supply you with the name and address of the CRA they used.
- You have the right to a free copy of your credit report in numerous instances including when your application for credit or employment is adversely affected because of information supplied by the CRA. You can get a free credit report each year in any case.
- You may opt-out of lists provided by the national credit bureaus that are based on your credit file.
- You may sue under the FCRA for violations of the Act.
- Credit scores are available to you on request from credit reporting agencies and sometimes from mortgage lenders. There may be a fee for the score.
If you have any issues with the information contained in your credit report, please call or email us for assistance. We have the necessary experience and knowledge to deal directly with the reporting agencies. In most cases we can get the negative information removed or corrected to improve your score and get you the loan or mortgage you desire.
Your credit report from the 3 US credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, are available for you to view for free annually at AnnualCreditReport.com. Access your report and check for errors and fraudulent accounts. This report doesn’t include your credit score.
If any discrepancies are noticed, contact the credit reporting agencies and the bank or the credit card company reporting the unauthorized or wrong information and immediately report any issues. They’re required to investigate. It is important that you keep a log and copies of your correspondence.
Your credit score
Credit card companies display your credit score for free in your account. It is recommended that you check it on a regular basis. Paying bills on time and reducing debt can help improve your credit score.
Delinquencies on your accounts.
A delinquency is a payment that was made 30 or more days late. None or very few delinquencies on your account can cause your score to improve.
What You Can Do
Keep paying bills on time every month since it is important for maintaining a good credit score. If you remain behind with any payments, bring them current as soon as possible, and then make future payments on time. Over time, this will have a positive impact on your score. Continue reading Positive Score Factors
Your credit report and score can influence the type of home you can afford in different ways. It influences the interest rate of your mortgage, the total amount of money you are qualified to borrow, the lending terms of your mortgage agreement. It is recommended that you check your credit score and report at least three months prior to applying for a home loan. Buying a home is the biggest investment in most people’s lifetime. So, take the time to do your homework, ensure that your credit score is based on accurate credit report information, in order to find a home that fits your budget.
Your VantageScore® and grade is based primarily on a 24-month review of your credit report. Your credit report has information – such as your history of payment punctuality, the total amount of your available credit, the total amount and type of debt you have, the number of open and active accounts, and the longevity of your relationships with creditors.
“Only available as part of TransUnion® Credit Monitoring, the Credit Score Simulator tool shows you ways your current credit score would change based on future actions and events.”
The online credit score simulator is a useful tool that provides an insight of how different factors may affect your credit score. For example, just applying for a new credit card may downgrade your credit score by 2 points.
“With Credit Score Simulator, you won’t just know where your credit score stands, but also where it could go.”
Credit Score Simulator Highlights:
- Learn the easy way by planning credit actions ahead of time
- See how future actions or events would impact your score
- Select from 14 different categories
- Explore thousands of possible credit score simulations!
Criminals can install theft devices on top of gas station payment machines to steal your credit card information. To help reduce your risk, choose pumps closer to the gas station’s convenience store and check the machine for anything out of the ordinary before putting your card in.