I recently learned a very valuable lesson about credit scores.
Having been declined by a creditor the reasons provided included:
· Bankruptcy on file (correct)
· Current delinquency on file (no accounts with past due payments were found upon inspection)
· Serious delinquency (no accounts were past due and all open accounts had perfect records)
It was not possible that I had current delinquency or serious delinquency when no accounts were past due. It had to be something else!
I pulled my Experian report (free, available on-line because of the credit decline). I then went to MyFico and pulled the Experian report from there. The two reports did not match, even though they were pulled within 5 minutes of each other!!! How does that happen? Perhaps a question for another time??
Upon close inspection I determined there were accounts included in bankruptcy with no red flag and no indication of “paid late” on the MyFico report. There were accounts included in bankruptcy that appeared with a red flag under the “paid late” column. Now, the question was, why do some have red flags under "paid late" and others don’t? The reason was:
** accounts with a red flag under the “paid late” column had a description “included in bankruptcy”
** accounts without a red flag had either (1) no comment or (2) account closed in the comment field
The accounts with an entry in the comment field “included in bankruptcy” were causing my score to drop because:
** they were considered current delinquency (late payments)
** indicated I was not paying my bills on time (current activity)
I called Experian and spoke with a rep who would only take a dispute.
When I told her that approach would not work, that I previously disputed the accounts and had spoken with the creditors who confirmed they were not reporting the comment “included in bankruptcy” I again asked to speak with a supervisor. After some discussion and offering to file a lawsuit and provide copies of the letters and certified return receipts in suppport of an improper reporting claim against Experiean for 20 accounts did I finally make some headway.
The supervisor I spoke with is in the process of removing those comments “included in bankruptcy” and will provide me with a new credit report, provided a confirmation number for the call, and has taken my phone number to call and confirm when this has been done. I also have her name and number.
I estimate, based on the credit score simulator, the removal of the "included in bankruptcy" from the comment section will increase my FIFO score 20-30 points for delinquency and another 30 points late current payments. A
If the simulator is correct, there should be a bet gain of approximately 50 points in my score.