When And Why Should I Review My Credit Report After A Bankruptcy?

You should wait a few months to look at it, because it takes some time for everything to kind of clear up. Credit agencies will have their own searches that they do in public records to see that you have a bankruptcy and put it on there, and then the creditors themselves will also have to receive notice that you’ve filed bankruptcy and then do what they need to do or report to the credit agencies, so there is some time there.

I’d wait maybe 4 or 5 months after you file and then check your credit report and hopefully what you see is outstanding accounts and then you’ll see that there is a bankruptcy filed on there. That’s the best case scenario. Sometimes you may need to do some work to dispute a creditor that didn’t receive notice or hasn’t done what they are supposed to do in terms of getting it clear off of your credit, but for the most part, you should see a pretty clean report.

Is it Difficult to Correct Errors or Something that Hasn’t Been Updated?

It’s usually a matter of just making a phone call. Creditors are pretty good about doing what they need to do when it comes to a bankruptcy because the bankruptcy court has a lot of power and they don’t like infringing, and they don’t like it when creditors infringe on consumer’s rights, so the bankruptcy court will be going to issue sanctions and do things like that if there is a creditor that isn’t following the rules the right way.

It’s rare to have problems with the creditors. They are usually pretty good about keeping things up. It may take some time for them to get around the things but they are pretty good about not giving you hard time.

How Often Should Someone Check Their Credit Report After A Bankruptcy?

If you have filed bankruptcy or not, you can get one credit report for free every year, that’s a law in the U.S. code. So, I would suggest that you just go ahead and continue to do that or start doing that if you haven’t been doing it and do it at the same time every year.

I like to do mine around tax time just because that’s the time when I’m doing that kind of stuff and looking at my finances and it’s a good time to take a look at the credit report too and make sure that there is not anything wrong on there, you’re not having fraud problems or any misreports, and you just continue to do that once a year after your bankruptcy and you should be good. I don’t think you really need to look at it more often or take any extra steps just because you filed the bankruptcy.

Does Checking the Credit Score and Applying for New Credit Impact the Credit Score?

Yes, it can. There is some misinformation about this. I think in the credit industry, they have what’s called a hard check and a soft check. So, a hard check is something that’s going to affect your credit score and that’s like getting a full report that has a full-on report with all of your credit, all of your debts and all that kind of stuff.  You can get one of those every so often and it’s not going to hurt you but once you go over a couple of checks a year, then it’s going to start to negatively impact your score.

There are also soft checks, and those are not full reports and they are sort of things that people that you already have credit with might run. In some cases, they can even do it without additional information from you. Those kinds of soft checks aren’t going to hurt your score.

What you don’t want to do is a hard check is triggered when you apply for credit, that’s the bottom-line. It hurts your credit score because I guess credit bureaus have determined that if somebody is out there trying to get credit over and over again that that’s somebody that is more likely to default on those debts in the future. The bottom-line is don’t worry about checking your credit report per se, but don’t apply for credit too often because that’s going to negatively impact you.

If I File Bankruptcy, Will My Spouse’s Credit Report Get Affected?

No, it won’t. When you file bankruptcy, you have a choice if you’re married to file jointly if you want or you can file separately. If you file separately, then your filing will not affect anything on your spouse’s credit report. It could possibly affect some of the relationships that you have with creditors if you’re co-debtor, but it’s not going to show up on your spouse’s credit report or negatively impact their score or anything bad.

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