Big changes are coming to credit reports as of July 1st. The three credit bureaus, TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian agreed to the creation of the National Consumer Assistance Plan (NCAP), as part of a settlement with New York Attorney General, Eric T. Schneiderman. The most significant change for users of credit reports will be in the decreased reporting of public records, specifically tax liens and civil judgments. Bankruptcies, however, should experience no reduction in their being reported on credit reports.

The reason for most civil judgments and tax liens disappearing from credit reports is the NCAP requirements that (1) sufficient PII (personally identifiable information) exist on the record, and (2) that public records be collected and updated at least every 90 days. PII includes name, address, date of birth, and social security number. To be sufficient, at least three of the four PII must be present on the public record. Since most civil judgments and tax liens do not have dates of birth and complete social security numbers, they will largely disappear from credit reports starting July 1st.

For resident screening and tenant screening users, this means that eviction judgments soon will no longer appear on credit reports. Fortunately, there is an alternative. Reliable Background Screening provides a National Instant Eviction Search as a separate product. This product collects forcible detainer and unlawful detainer (eviction) judgments. Resident screening and tenant screening users who are not currently obtaining this separate Eviction Search product should consider raising their application fee to pass through the additional expense of purchasing the Eviction Search product. It should be noted that collection accounts for landlord and apartment debts will continue to be displayed on credit reports.

Other users of credit reports may also find the National Instant Eviction Search product helpful, as it is a way to uncover at least some civil judgments.

Posted by: Rudy Troisi. President, Reliable Background Screening.