Help for consumer credit may be on the way
The 3 large credit reporting agencies (CRA’s), Experian, Equifax & Transunion have collaborated on and announced the creation of the National Consumer Assistance Plan which they say will change the way unpaid and paid medical debt will be reported on a consumer’s credit report. This self imposed plan will also require the CRA’s to gather more and accurate information from creditors when an item is disputed by the consumer. This should help consumer credit.
The CRA’s will now wait 180 days before reporting unpaid medical debt allowing more time for the consumer and their insurance company to arrange for payment. In addition, paid medical debts will be removed from consumer reports, which is a change from the current 7 year reporting policy.
Also the CRA’s will hire and train employees to address and respond to consumer disputes. Currently the practice is automated in that over 85% of the disputes are simply sent to the creditor to address the issue.
This is certainly a step in the right direction.
However, it remains to be seen if Experian, Equifax and Transunion are committed to providing accurate information on consumer credit reports or of this is simply a measure to slow down the scrutiny of the federal and some state governments.
No Change as of June 2017
We originally posted this blog in March of 2015 when the report first came out. However, as of June of 2017 there has been no recognizable change to the way paid or unpaid medical debt is being reported. And, certainly no help for consumer credit scores. Since PR News Wire reported this there has been no follow up. We’ll assume that’s because of the difficulty in getting 3 separate $billion companies on the same page. Or, we’ll chalk this up to an attempt by the CRA’s to get good press back in 2015.
For information and advice on your credit score visit www.ERACreditServices.com