How long does negative information remain on my credit report?

A credit reporting company generally can report most negative information for seven years.

Information about a lawsuit or a judgment against you can be reported for seven years or until the statute of limitations runs out, whichever is longer. Bankruptcies can stay on your report for up to 10 years.

Even though the credit reporting companies usually won’t report this negative information after the seven year limit, they still may keep your information on file.

There are certain instances where they will report it. These time limits on reporting negative information do not apply if the credit report will be used in connection with:

  • Your application for a job that pays more than $75,000 a year
  • Your application for more than $150,000 worth of credit or life insurance

Tip: Don’t pay fees to “repair” your credit history.

Many companies promise to “repair” or “fix” your credit for an upfront fee. However, no one can remove negative information, such as late payments, from a credit report if it is accurate. You can only get your credit report fixed if it contains errors, and you can do that on your own at no cost.

Tip: If you have a problem with credit reporting, you can submit a complaint with the CFPB online.

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