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Credit and the Law

Credit and the Law


The Equal Credit Opportunity Act says that all lenders will apply the same credit standards to all the consumers no matter what their race, sex, marital status, national origin, religion, age, or public assistance program that is involved.  This does not say for sure that the loan approved or credit will be given to you.  It will give you an equal chance to obtain credit. The only good measurement for creditors to use is your ability to pay the debts that you owe.


Many of the applications will have questions about some of the above things. However you are not required to answer them on an application for credit.  These may be asked because of the fair housing laws or affirmative action laws but these are at your discretion.  You should not be asked about your material status, unless your partner will help you secure the loan.  You may be asked your age because of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, but only to determine if you are old enough to have the credit. This means that you have to be over the age of 18 in the U.S.


Creditors must tell any applicants of their decision within 30 days. If the application is not approved, the creditor must provide a written statement that has full detail of the outcome or decision along with the reason for the denial and the information on the applicant’s rights. This act will help to seal for certain it is kept with all applications for credit no matter who the applicant is.


The Fair Credit Reporting Act will also give people the right to see their credit report.  To make this better, everyone is entitled to a free credit report every 12 months.  This act will help people to receive their credit history for all three national credit-reporting agencies.  When you are reviewing your credit, you can dispute items on the credit report and this will allow the consumer to control some of what the credit reporting agencies have against them.  If the correction to your credit in not right, you can also add a statement of 100 words or less to help clarify the item that you want to dispute.


The act was started to uphold the accuracy and privacy of a person’s private information in the credit report.  It was passed with the intention of preventing identity theft, which has become more popular in recent years.  By reviewing one’s credit report each year, he or she will be able to determine if any kind of identity theft has happened.


Both of these acts will protect you by helping the fairness of the lending industry while allowing you to take control of your credit history and making sure that it is accurate.  If you want to maintain good credit, you need to learn as much about it as you can.  Understanding these laws means that you are taking a good and positive step in creating good credit for yourself and making it possible to have a more stable financial future.

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