Written by Thomas Ahearn, editor-in-chief of the ESR News blog
In September 2021, the United States House of Representatives passed HR4350 – National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) which included amendments to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) dealing with the reporting of ‘Adverse information about service members by consumers. Reporting Agencies (CRA).
“The FY22 NDAA is excellent legislation that brings transformational policy changes with direct benefits for our service members and their families,” said Representative Adam Smith (D-WA), who sponsored the HR4350, in a statement. hurry. In October 2021, the legislation was received in the US Senate.
The changes to the FCRA would add the defined terms “consumer in uniform,” who is a member of uniformed services such as the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps, and “consumer in uniform. deployed ”, which serves in a combat zone, on a military vessel or in deployment. They would also impose requirements.
- Reporting rating agencies are prohibited from declaring adverse information about a “uniformed consumer” if the event which resulted in the addition of adverse information to the consumer’s record occurred while the consumer was a “consumer in uniform” consumer in deployed uniform ”.
- If consumers provide the CRAs with proof that they were a “deployed uniform consumer” at the time the event that resulted in the addition of adverse information to the consumer’s record occurred, the CRAs should “promptly remove the adverse information item in the record and notify the consumer and the information provider of the deletion.
- CRAs that receive adverse information about consumers who have provided proof that they are a “uniform consumer” must promptly notify consumers that the CRA has received adverse information, provide a description of the adverse information and provide the methodology by which the consumer can contest the validity of the information.
- If consumers who have provided the CRAs with proof that they are a “uniform consumer” provide the CRA with separate contact information to use, the CRAs must use those contact details for all communications while the consumer is a uniform consumer. .
The changes also stipulated that “anyone using a consumer report containing an adverse information item should, if the action or inaction that gave rise to the item occurred while the consumer was an active consumer”. uniform, take this fact into account when assessing the consumer’s creditworthiness.
FCRA 15 USC § 1681 was enacted by Congress in 1970 to promote the accuracy, fairness, and confidentiality of consumer information contained in CRA files, and to protect consumers from voluntary inclusion and / or neglect of inaccurate information in their consumer reports. . A copy of the FCRA is available here.
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