Public Records Can Affect Credit Scores

Many individuals believe that their credit score only reflects payments on credit and loans; however, this is not entirely true. Public records also affect credit ratings. Individuals should be aware of any records or judgments that might negatively affect their credit—and prevent them if at all possible. To mend a credit score affected by too many open credit lines or excessively large monthly payments, strategies like debt consolidation services can help. However, public records tend to be more difficult to resolve.

Public records are those that are open to the public. Examples of public records that could affect a credit rating include tax liens, rulings pertaining to uncollected credit, and financial documents. (Information such as divorce or marriage records, while public, do not affect credit scores.) Consumers should remember that a negative public record—even one that has been paid—can remain on a credit report for several years. After such a record, an individual should take proactive steps toward personal credit repair to fix the damage to his or her score as early as possible.

The public records most damaging to credit are judgments given in a court of law against a borrower. This can happen when a lender summons the borrower to court for unpaid debt. Adverse judgments remains on an individual’s credit record for seven years. For this reason, before handling a credit obligation in court, borrowers should make every effort to negotiate with the lender to find an alternative means of settling the issue. Qualified credit repair specialists can help in making arrangements that suit both parties. Consumers who take advantage of arrangements that allow them to fulfill credit obligations see the results in his or her credit score.