2 Types of Black Marks Might Vanish From Your Credit File Soon

Photo by Kittisak Jirasittichai / Shutterstock.com

Your credit scores might change for the better after July 1.

That’s when the three national credit reporting agencies “plan to stop collecting and reporting substantial amounts of civil judgment and tax lien information on public records affecting millions of American consumers,” according to a recent report by syndicated real estate columnist Kenneth R. Harney.

Civil judgments are court-ordered debts stemming from civil lawsuits. Tax liens are placed by government agencies on the properties of folks with unpaid taxes.

Currently, civil judgments and tax liens can appear in credit files and impact credit scores, Harney says, so consumers stand to benefit from this change.

However, the change could negatively impact mortgage lenders, landlords and other entities that use credit files to evaluate consumers.

For example, David H. Stevens, the president and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association, tells Harney that without civil judgment and tax lien information, some applicants’ credit scores might be artificially raised, creating “false positives” that make those applicants appear to be less of a risk than they are.

Time to check your credit reports

If you’re unsure whether this change will affect you, it’s probably time to check your credit reports.

The three national credit reporting agencies — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — all keep credit reports on consumers.

Federal law requires them all to provide you with a free copy of your credit report once a year. You can obtain them at AnnualCreditReport.com.

Those credit reports will not include your credit scores, however — at least not for free.

But several other websites, such as Credit Sesame, will give you a VantageScore for free. For a FICO score, check out “8 Ways to Get Your FICO Score for Free.”

Additionally, many financial institutions now give their customers either a VantageScore or FICO score for free. You’ll find a list of them in “These 19 Card Companies Offer Free Credit Score Info.”

What do you make of the news about civil judgments and tax liens no longer being a part of credit files? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.

How to find cheaper car insurance in minutes

Getting a better deal on car insurance doesn't have to be hard. You can have The Zebra, an insurance comparison site compare quotes in just a few minutes and find you the best rates. Consumers save an average of $368 per year, according to the site, so if you're ready to secure your new rate, get started now.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
This Grocery Store Is Cheaper Than Even Walmart
This Grocery Store Is Cheaper Than Even Walmart

One grocery chain is likely to save you more money than any other.

7 Big Purchases You Should Never Make
7 Big Purchases You Should Never Make

Sometimes a big-ticket purchase is nothing more than a big waste of money.

Avoiding These 5 Foods Could Save Your Vision as You Age
Avoiding These 5 Foods Could Save Your Vision as You Age

Millions of Americans may be able to prevent an incurable cause of blindness by making a basic change.

9 Affordable Ways to Make Your Home Look Expensive
9 Affordable Ways to Make Your Home Look Expensive

These products from Amazon add elegance to your home without the expense.

5 Ways Your Phone Can Slash Grocery Costs
5 Ways Your Phone Can Slash Grocery Costs

These free apps and websites can help you get cash back on groceries, shop more efficiently or squeeze the most from the ingredients you have on hand.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
Will I Get My Ex-Husband’s Social Security When He Dies?
Will I Get My Ex-Husband’s Social Security When He Dies?

Two factors determine how much money is coming to you.

7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast
7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast

Your financial security might soon depend upon the strength of your credit score.

21 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar Store
21 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar Store

Dollar stores have great bargains on these familiar purchases. Yes, even pregnancy tests.

13 Brilliant Bulk-Buy Items on Amazon
13 Brilliant Bulk-Buy Items on Amazon

Every household should have these products on hand. Buying them in bulk on Amazon saves you cash.

6 Reasons I Will Never Trust Suze Orman
6 Reasons I Will Never Trust Suze Orman

Beware: The self-proclaimed personal finance expert has a track record that suggests more sizzle than steak.

5 Household Disinfectants That Can Destroy the Coronavirus
5 Household Disinfectants That Can Destroy the Coronavirus

You likely already have some of these products at home.

America’s Most Reliable Appliance Brand Is a Surprise
America’s Most Reliable Appliance Brand Is a Surprise

Have you heard of this appliance manufacturer?

This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked
This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked

The Social Security Administration is not helping certain people get money to which they are entitled, a report says.

Getting These 2 Shots Could Reduce Your Risk of Dementia
Getting These 2 Shots Could Reduce Your Risk of Dementia

These vaccines may lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by up to 40%.

8 Things That Are Free in August
8 Things That Are Free in August

As summer enters the home stretch, we’ve rounded up these sizzling freebies.

9 Everyday Problems You Can Solve With Vaseline
9 Everyday Problems You Can Solve With Vaseline

Forget expensive specialty products. Good ol’ petroleum jelly can address many common annoyances.

16 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now
16 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

19 Purchases That Buyers Almost Always Regret
19 Purchases That Buyers Almost Always Regret

Think twice before buying these things.

19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree
19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree

These jobs pay more than the typical job in the U.S. — and no bachelor’s degree is required.

7 Tips for Building an Emergency Stockpile
7 Tips for Building an Emergency Stockpile

A pandemic or natural disaster could leave you reliant on your existing food supply. Is your pantry prepared?

8 of the Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar Store
8 of the Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar Store

Not everything sold at dollar stores is a great bargain or a safe purchase. Here’s our list of products to avoid.

41 Things You Should Never Buy
41 Things You Should Never Buy

Some purchases are just plain dumb. Give yourself — and your budget — a break. Don’t spend money on this stuff.

Homeowners Say These 2 Kitchen Appliance Brands Are Best
Homeowners Say These 2 Kitchen Appliance Brands Are Best

One brand takes five of the top honors, while another ranks highest in three categories.

The 7 Best Things to Shop in August — and 5 to Avoid
The 7 Best Things to Shop in August — and 5 to Avoid

Here’s how to navigate August sales and discounts — which might look a little different this year

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.