College Central®

Ask around. The Network works.®

Personal Finance
The Facts about Public Records

Frank Bruno -- In order to know whether or not you have been managing your financial life quite efficiently, it is important that you understand everything contained in your credit report.

This particular report is used by creditors to gauge whether or not you are a high risk when it comes to loans and other financial services offered by these creditors. Aside from personal information and a summary on your credit history, you can also find public records in your credit report.

So what are these public records? How could they affect your credit report? Simply put, public records are actually information pertaining to legal matters that have direct relation to your credit. There are actually eight kinds of public records that can be found on your credit report. These are:

Bankruptcy: When a person is unable to pay his debts, he can file for bankruptcy. Of course, the person must prove his inability to pay his debt and present the evidence in a bankruptcy court. In the United States, a person declared to be bankrupt under Chapter 7 will no longer have to pay his creditors. This public record remains in credit reports for up to ten years and could mean the difference between low and high interest rates.

Legal Item: Any legal case filed against you in a civil court will end up as one of your public records. There could be instances when you might not know about a civil lawsuit filed against you if not for the public records section in your credit report. On the other hand, if you are aware that you have civil cases filed against you, it would be best to take care of them; they would be considered by the creditors as they offer a glimpse of your personal life. This kind of public record should also be avoided at all costs.

Financial Counseling: Surprisingly, people who have chosen to undergo financial counseling will find their decision to seek help entered in their credit report under the public records section.

Foreclosure: If your home has been re-possessed and auctioned off by your creditors due to non-fulfillment of mortgage obligations, you should not be surprised if a foreclosure is entered in your public records information.

Financial Statement: Whenever you take out a loan and you used your property as collateral, you can expect this kind of public record to be in your credit report.

Garnishment: If a court decrees that a certain portion of your wages is deducted to pay a creditor, it will appear on your public records as garnishment.

Tax Lien: This is a claim filed against you by the local, federal, or state government for failure to pay taxes.

Marital Item: You will find a public record of this kind on your credit report if there are any legal claims made against you related to divorce or marriage issues.

All these are kinds of public records that can significantly lower your credit ratings and affect your borrowing power.

Credit Expert Frank Bruno has assisted nearly two thousand consumers to quickly and dramatically improve their credit report and credit scores. For more information on how you can raise your credit scores up to 250+ points, visit http://www.DisputeDemon.com for his credit dispute software.

© 2007 Frank Bruno

Return to top

The views and opinions expressed in these articles do not necessarily reflect those of College Central Network, Inc. or its affiliates. Reference to any company, organization, product, or service does not constitute endorsement by College Central Network, Inc., its affiliates or associated companies. The information provided is not intended to replace the advice or guidance of your legal or medical professional.