There are many steps you can take to rebuild your credit after bankruptcy. Some of the easiest ways to rebuild credit after bankruptcy include the following:
Checking your credit report after bankruptcy is essential. If your credit report contains errors, this could hurt your credit and lead to the denial of credit or loans. For example, your credit report after chapter 7 bankruptcy should report discharged debts as closed, and without a balance. Sometimes collection agencies will not update your credit report, or will open new collection account tradelines after your bankruptcy even though the underlying debt was discharged in bankruptcy. Don't wait until your denied credit to take action. Check your credit report 60 days after your bankruptcy discharge to ensure there are no errors or mistakes on your credit report.
A secured credit card is similar to a debit card and can help rebuild your credit after bankruptcy. A secured card requires a cash collateral deposit that becomes the "credit line" for that account. For example, if you put $100 in the account, you can charge up to $100.
A co-signed credit card or loan can help rebuild your credit, but you need to have a friend or family member with good credit history who is willing to co-sign for you.
Being an authorized user on someone else's account can also help you rebuild your credit after bankruptcy. Being an authorized user mean that you are allowed to make purchases with someone else's credit account, but are not personally liable for payment of that account. Being an authorized user can appear on your credit report, and can help rebuild your credit if the primary accountholder makes regular payments and keeps the account in good standing.
What happens when an original creditor and collection agency both report the same debt on your credit report?
Although there is no technical term, when an original creditor and collector both report you to the credit bureaus for the same debt, this usually referred to as double entry credit reporting, double jeopardy reporting, or double entries on your credit report. Sometimes, there can even be multiple collection accounts for the same debt.
Original creditors and collection agencies are generally permitted to report separate tradelines so long as the reporting is accurate and complete. Sometimes collection agencies will adjust the balance or the date of the delinquency to make this look like a new debt. This can happen when consumers have recently filed bankruptcy and an unscrupulous creditor continues collection efforts after bankruptcy. Learn what you can do when a collector attempts to collect a debt that was discharged in bankruptcy.
You should review your credit report to ensure that old collection accounts do not show up as active or with incorrect balances, or pay status information. Inaccurate collection accounts can harm your credit by making it appear like you have more debt or collection accounts than you actually have. When a collection agency sells, transfers, or no longer services the account, the collection agency should delete the tradeline or update the tradeline by stating it is closed or has been transferred.
You have the right to dispute credit report errors with the credit reporting agencies and other credit bureaus. If the credit bureaus refuse to correct credit report errors, the FCRA permits you to file a lawsuit against the credit bureaus.
You should speak to an experienced credit lawyer if you believe your credit report contains errors, or has double entries that are inaccurate or misleading. Our Michigan credit lawyers can help you dispute credit report errors. Please contact us by filling out our contact form or by calling our office at (313) 415-5559.