BKs, judgments and tax liens...Oh My! by Credit Matters, Inc.
While you may not face lions, tigers and bears when trying to obtain financing, sometimes the feelings of impending doom are the same as Dorothy felt while following the yellow brick road through Haunted Forest. And, as Dorothy found, facing your adversaries directly enables you to negotiate your way through any perils and ultimately reach your Emerald City – loan approval. Following is a brief overview of the issues regarding public records listed in a credit report. Bankruptcies: Chapter 7 bankruptcies are reported for 10 years, while Chapter 13 bankruptcies are reported for seven years. Both types of bankruptcies are reported at the time of filing and remain for the duration of seven or 10 years from the date of last activity – either the filing date or the discharge date if you went through with the bankruptcy. Items included in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy are reported for
seven years. It is the creditor’s responsibility to notify the credit reporting agencies of an account being included in bankruptcy…not the bankruptcy attorney’s. Judgments: If a judgment is filed against you, it is reported to the credit reporting agencies at that time by the county courthouse. Judgments report for seven years from the date the judgment is filed. Paying off the plaintiff does not show the judgment as paid on the credit report until a “satisfaction” is filed with the courthouse in the county the judgment was filed. Often, this paid/satisfied status is not updated to the credit reporting agencies by the county. Tax Liens: Unpaid tax liens report for 15 years from the date of filing. Paid tax liens report for seven years from the paid date. Both federal and state tax liens are filed at the county courthouse. When a tax lien is paid, the governing agency usually files a “release” with the county.
Often, this release is not updated by the county courthouse to the credit reporting agencies to show that a lien is released. Sometimes the state or the IRS hasn’t filed the release with the county…something you should follow up on with the clerk of courts (state) and register of deeds (IRS). Dan Krueger is the owner of Credit Matters, Inc., a registered Credit Service Organization with the State of Wisconsin. Since 2003 Credit Matters has assisted over 3,000 consumers and small business owners with credit restoration and consultation services. For assistance with your credit management or score improvement needs, call us at: 800-531-7279. “Professionally Speaking” is a promotional spot for business professionals to share their expertise with New North B2B readers.
NEW NORTH B2B l OCTOBER 2012 l 41
Regional business magazine