A major legislative proposal that has emerged on Capitol Hill tackles some of consumers’ major difficulties with the credit reporting system, and how it impacts their buying power, particularly when it comes to big purchases like mortgages.
Of course there is no guarantee that the bill will survive a fraught election year, but its emergence is sign of a response in Washington to the realities of being a consumer in today’s climate. Some of the major changes the bill outlines are as follows:
- Restricting the use of credit scores in hiring decisions
- Shifting more of the burden of proof onto creditors who report negative items
- Ordering credit bureaus to remove negative information after 45 days upon payment rather than leaving information on file for years, as well as notifying consumers the first time a creditorreports negative information about them
- Significantly cutting the retention of negative information from 7 to 4 years or 10 to 7 years in the case of bankruptcies
- The bill would also address the hangover of bad credit from the great recession by removing information related to proven deceptive or predatory lending practices.
- The bill would attempt to modernize the scoring system, moving away from the FICO system.
In short, the bill would attempt to address the concerns of ordinary consumers, and act as an amnesty of sorts for consumers trying to get back on their feet after the financial crisis of 2008. Whether it passes or not, the reforms outlined are a step in the right direction.
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