Home > Personal Details > Q & A: Getting Hold of Your Credit File

Q & A: Getting Hold of Your Credit File

By: Lynne Conner - Updated: 20 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Credit File Financial History Lenders

A credit file is a record of your financial history. It enables potential lenders to assess your credit risk.

What Information Does it Contain?

Information includes material from the electoral roll, such as evidence of your address.Lenders are reassured if you are on the electoral roll, so if you are not already, then it is worth signing up. Other data includes details of bankruptcy and certificates of discharge, county court judgements, lenders information and records of previous searches by other lenders as well as details of previous names, and linked addresses.

Who Might Look at it?

Any company entering into a financial agreement with you may decide to investigate your credit background before allowing you credit. This is to protect them against the possibility of you failing to keep to the agreement. Sometimes they will use their own in-house system of credit scoring but often they will decide to access your credit file. This provides them with the information they need to assess the risk of entering into an agreement with you.

So, for example, this may include organisations such as banks and building societies as well as shops and other commercial organisations. If you apply for a mortgage, a loan or a credit card then you can expect that your credit file will be consulted.

Can I Be Blacklisted?

Credit files do not carry recommendations for lenders. They simply contain key financial information as compiled by credit reference agencies. It is then up to the lender to decide.

Who Holds Credit Files?

Credit reference agencies hold credit files and there are three main credit reference agencies within the UK. Callcredit, Experian and Equifax all compile personal credit files and maintain the records in their databases. Between them they hold data on most UK adults. These are the organisations which companies approach when they are seeking to validate your financial background.

How Can I Go About Getting a Copy?

Under the Data Protection Act anyone is entitled to view their personal credit file. Often people decide to do so after having been refused credit by a company. If this happens to you it is definitely worth checking your file to get a clearer understanding for the reason for the refusal. However you may also wish to see your file to be aware of what financial records appear there.

To get a copy of your file simply contact one of the credit reference agencies for a copy. You will need to pay a nominal fee and provide them with a few key facts about yourself such as name, date of birth and current and recent addresses. You should receive your file quickly as agencies are required to respond to you within 7 days. Occasionally, to prevent fraud, a company will require further proof of identity such as a copy of a utility bill before it can provide your file.

What if My Credit File Contains the Wrong Information?

If your file contains out of date information then you can take action. For example a County Court Judgement (CCJ) may still appear when it has expired. You can contact Registry Trust Ltd to have this data brought up to date. Otherwise you can write to the lender directly, which is recommended, or to the credit reference agency, outlining the issue in order to have it resolved.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopfully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • AboutIdentityTheft
    Re: Your National Insurance Number
    Shree - Your Question:Hi, I have just got my NI number in a post. The letter contains my name as Mrs Bhagyavi Barthkumar Patel…
    20 February 2017
  • Shree
    Re: Your National Insurance Number
    Hi, I have just got my NI number in a post. The letter contains my name as Mrs Bhagyavi Barthkumar Patel instead of Mrs Bhagyavi…
    19 February 2017
  • Pd77
    Re: Your Driving Licence and your Passport
    My national insurance card and drivers licence have been stolen. what Risk is there if someone using them to get…
    2 February 2017
  • Yogesh Raja
    Re: Proving Your Identity
    Relying on signatures is boosting identity fraud because in the event of crime signatures do not even expose person's gender. To make…
    1 February 2017
  • JCG78
    Re: Identity Theft of the Deceased
    @Nana - come clean after his death. If you report him he will be arrested and face charges for stealing someone else's ID. What…
    27 January 2017
  • Nana
    Re: Identity Theft of the Deceased
    I have been caring for elderly uncle in his late 70s . He has been using his brother ID for many years . His brother lives…
    26 January 2017
  • Louise
    Re: Your National Insurance Number
    Hi. Can a national insurance card be used to find someone's bank details out ? I currently filled some details regarding a tax…
    11 January 2017
  • PRA
    Re: Your National Insurance Number
    My employer had a data breach of my NI number and it took them over two months to inform me of the breach. This seems too long.…
    23 December 2016
  • A.K
    Re: Your National Insurance Number
    I was waiting on a letter from HMRC - my new tax code. It always has a note of my FULL national insurance number, FULL name…
    20 December 2016
  • AboutIdentityTheft
    Re: Your National Insurance Number
    Vhp - Your Question:My ex employer has been using my NI without me knowing and I have been paying tax every month and few weeks…
    8 December 2016
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the AboutIdentityTheft website. Please read our Disclaimer.