The Credit reference agencies in the United Kingdom hold a record of most types of credit agreements taken out or applied for. A record of search is recorded, when a company views your credit reference file. This will show the date it searched your file, the name of the organization and the type of search. Businesses may also view your credit reference file while you are
shopping around for the best insurance or credit deals; Please note that they should always make you aware that they will perform this. To avoid a lot of credit application searches while you are shopping around for the best credit deals, you
should make it clear that all you want is a quotation for the likely cost of the product. Businesses can perform quotation searches which do not indicate that you have made a application for credit.
Also, sometimes businesses need view parts of your file for other reasons, such as to prevent money laundering or to verify your identity. No one else except you would see that they had
performed these enquiries.
Items listed on your credit reference file include:
Individual voluntary arrangements (IVA), county court judgments or bankruptcy are registered on your credit file.
An arrangement to pay - Sometimes, if you cannot make the full payments for your credit account, the lender may allow you to pay a different amount for a short time. This will be shown on your credit reference file as an arrangement to pay.
Every credit account includes a status history that shows how payments were made. This includes settled and closed accounts, live accounts, and defaulted accounts.
The electoral roll (or voters roll) - By law, credit reference agencies are allowed to use the full electoral roll for certain limited purposes. When you apply for credit, a lender may look at the electoral roll to check that you live, or have lived, at the address(es) you have given on an application form.
Association or alias information- You may see a list of any other names you have used in the past, for example a maiden name. This is known as alias information. Financial information in your other names will show on your credit reference file.
If you have a joint account or have made a joint application for credit, the name of the other person(s) will show on your credit file as a financial association. This means that when a lender views your credit file they will also be able to see financial information in the name of the other person or persons. However, your file will only show financial information in your name. Your file will show the name of the organization that gave this information and when. You and the other person may also have provided this information directly to a credit reference agency. The other person's name will stay on your credit reference file until you write to the credit reference agencies telling them that you are no longer financially connected. This is called disassociation.
Linked addresses - A linked address may be created when an account moves between addresses, such as when you move house, or when a lender checks your records at your previous address, or if you tell a credit reference agency about a previous or forwarding address.
Council of Mortgage Lenders; repossession register - The Council of Mortgage Lenders keeps a register of people who have had a property repossessed or have given it.
CIFAS (the UK's fraud prevention service) - This is a system used by the credit industry and other organizations to prevent fraud. If a lender believes it may have detected a fraud or attempted fraud, a CIFAS marker may be put on your credit reference file. It is intended to warn lenders and to protect innocent consumers. The information filed may not directly relate to you but, for example, may show that someone has tried to use your name without your permission. No one should be refused credit just because of a CIFAS marker, and these markers are not included in your credit score. A CIFAS marker simply means the lender should take extra care to make sure that the person applying for credit is who they claim to be and that the information they have given on their application form is correct. Only members of CIFAS can see this information.
GAIN (Gone Away Information Network) - Lenders that take part in GAIN pass information to the credit reference agencies when customers have not kept their account repayments up to date and then move without telling the lender their new address. Only participants in GAIN may see this information.
Please Note: There is actually no such thing as a blacklist of people that lenders will automatically refuse to lend to.
Learn about What Affects A Credit Score In The UK.
Find out How Long Information Is Kept On Your Credit Reference File In The UK.
The Limitations Act 1980 gives creditors a maximum amount of time to start legal proceedings after the last payment or written acknowledgement (note or letter) from the debtor. For most debts, this is six years, or 12 years for mortgages.
Sources of this information include Directgov at http://www.direct.gov.uk/ and further information on UK credit report facts can be found there. Disclaimer: The above information was
written in good faith, but we cannot guarantee accuracy.