About your credit report

A good credit record is very important. Without it, you are unlikely to get the best interest rates when you borrow, and you may not qualify to borrow the money you need when you need it most.

Your "credit report" holds your credit history. It is stored by consumer reporting agencies called "credit bureaus." Anyone who has applied for credit, a charge account, a student loan, insurance or even an apartment rental has a credit record on file with a credit bureau. Credit bureaus sell this information to creditors, employers, insurers, landlords or anyone else who has a business reason to need it.

What's in my credit report?

Your credit report contains information about your debts and credit payment history. It contains identifying information like your name, address, Social Security number, birth date, current employer and spouse's name. It also contains the names of everyone who has requested a copy of your credit report in the past six months (two years for employment records). If you have any civil judgments against you or have filed for bankruptcy, this information is also in your credit report.

How can I get a copy of my credit report?

You may be eligible to receive a credit report at no charge once every twelve months from each of the three credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Simply visit www.annualcreditreport.com to request your credit report online, or call 1-877-322-8228 to make your request by phone.

How do I keep a good credit history?

Only you can control your credit history. Keeping as much positive payment information in your file as possible can help a lot. Your on-time payments of rent, credit, charge cards and any other type of bills, including student loans, will translate into a positive credit history.

How long does information stay on my report?

Monthly payment activity Up to 2 years
Inquiries Up to 2 years
Civil judgments Up to 7 years
Tax liens Up to 7 years from filing date
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Up to 10 years from discharge date
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Up to 7 years from completion date
Collection accounts Up to 7 years from delinquency with original creditor


Call the Financial Insider Network Customer Service Center toll-free at 1-800-510-7033. HOURS: weekdays 7:00 A.M. - 8:00 P.M. (CST).






  Visit our Legal Resource Center  
  Does your credit need help?  
  Credit Evaluation Worksheet  
  Goal setting:1,2,3  
  Income worksheet  
  Tracking daily expenses  
  Spending plan  
  Credit tips & warning signs  
  Can you afford more debt?  
  About your credit report  
  10 rules of money management  

Home  |  Will Preparation  |  Legal Assistance  |  Financial Tools  |  Resource Center  |  Tax Preparation  |  FAQ  |