• DYE CULIK PC | Consumer Protection Division

The Other Downsides of Bad Credit


credit report

Love Life

A common stressor for couples can be finances and break-ups happen due to differences in financial responsibility. Debt and the inability to obtain credit can add a tremendous burden to a relationship. In divorce, credit scores are sometimes leveraged in dividing assets.

Job Hunting

Some employers use credit checks as a way to determine responsibility and poor credit can take you out of the running for a job. Depending on the state you live in, there may be restrictions for employer run credit checks, so make sure you know your rights. But, it is generally legal for employers to run a credit report with your permission. If you know the employer will be running your credit, go in prepared to answer any questions or concerns. If you do not get the job because of a negative credit report, the employer is required to tell you that.

Renting

Most landlords run your credit report now and will often look beyond the credit score. They can decide not to rent to you depending on how they interpret what’s reported about your debts past and present.

Insurance

Some auto and home insurers correlate low credit scores to high claims and may increase your rates because of this. Know your rights in your state and check with your insurance provider if rates seem unusually high.

Utilities

It is becoming more common for utility providers including electricity, gas, cable, and water to check up on your credit and penalize you for poor credit. Typically rates are the same, but they may require a hefty deposit before providing service.

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A regular check of your credit report and credit score is the best way to avoid any surprises or disappointments. You have the right to a free credit report each year at AnnualCreditReport.com. Use this or another service to regularly check your FICO score and what creditors are reporting on Experian, Transunion, and Equifax.

If you can prove something is incorrect on your credit report, you have rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act for the removal and possible damages if the creditor or credit reporting agency refuses to remove it. You should dispute any credit report errors immediately and follow-up. You can also use our Free Credit Report Dispute Kit for a step-by-step guide to disputing credit report errors.

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Culik Law is a Massachusetts Law Firm. The posts on Culik Law’s blog are not intended as legal advice. If you have questions about your particular situation, CONTACT CULIK LAW for a Free Consultation.

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