Question: What is a credit report?
A credit report is a summary of what debts you owe and a history of how promptly you have paid off your bills. The information comes from the companies where you have credit accounts and from public court records. It is collected and stored by companies often called credit bureaus who make the information available when you want to get a credit card or make a major purchase on a payment plan.
The three major credit-reporting agencies are:
There are exceptions to credit reporting but generally no agency may make any consumer report containing any of the following information.
- Cases under Title 11 or under the Bankruptcy Act that, from the date of entry of the order for relief or the date of adjudication, precede the report by more than 10 years.
- Civil suits, civil judgments, and records of arrest that precede the report by more than 7 years from date of entry, or until the statute of limitations has expired, whichever is longer.
- Paid tax liens that precede the report by more than 7 years.
- Accounts placed for collection or charged to profit and loss that precede the report by more than 7 years.
- Any other adverse information, other than records of convictions of crimes, that precede the report by more than 7 years.