There is a way that you can disassociate someone from you on your credit file if you believe that their credit history is having a negative effect on your own credit file and today, I’m going to tell you how to do it and share how you know whether you even need to bother.
Credit Scores are so important these days as they can affect everything from getting a mortgage to taking out a mobile phone contract and from the interest rate you’re given on a credit card to the amount that you’re allowed to borrow.
And the fact that it does have such an impact on your financial wellbeing means that it’s obviously a subject that causes people concern so I thought I’d answer a few of your credit file questions over the next couple of weeks to see if we can dispel some of your concerns and help you make any changes that you might need to make to help improve your credit rating….
When you don’t need to disassociate someone
Basically, as long as you’re not financially associated in any way with the person who you’re worried is going to have a negative impact on your credit file – which in essence means that you’ve never had any joint accounts or debts with them then your credit history will be entirely separate from theirs, whether you live with them or not.
To give you a few examples, here are a few situations where you do not need to disassociate someone from either you on your credit file:
- If you’re receiving debt collection letters from someone who used to live at your address
- You live with your parents and they have bad credit
- Your partner, or anyone you share your address with, has a poor credit history
Understandably, these situations can cause concerns but you don’t need to worry as your credit file will definitely not be affected by anyone else unless you have had a financial association with them in the past.
When you do need to disassociate someone
If, however, you do have a financial link to someone – be it an ex-partner who you had a mortgage or joint loan with or a flatmate who you shared a financial obligation with (such as a joint tenancy agreement) then you may want to make sure that they are no longer associated with you on your credit file once the financial arrangement has ended.
- You and your ex-partner may have had a mortgage together which is now paid off. Their credit rating isn’t that great and may possibly have a negative impact on your own credit file.
- You may have rented a property as a student with a joint tenancy agreement. You’ve moved on but your name could still be associated with the other people named on the agreement and they may have less than brilliant credit history which could be reflected in your own credit file.
- You may have acted as a guarantor for someone who has since paid off the loan you guaranteed. Their credit rating may be having an adverse effect on your own.
These are just examples of things that could have an impact on your credit file. There are many more examples and you won’t be affected in all cases so it’s always best to get a copy of your credit file to find out whether you are being affected before taking the time to put things right.
How to obtain a copy of your credit file
An Experian free account lets you access your Experian Credit Score for free which is updated every 30 days when you log in. This in itself isn’t going to give you a definitive answer as to who’s linked to you as it just shows your credit score but it is a very good indication as you’ll see your credit score so will get a pretty good idea if there’s something negative impacting you.
(The Experian free account is available to UK residents aged 18 years or over and subject to identity checks.)
If you prefer to see the full details of your credit file then you can add a CreditExpert paid subscription to your Experian account which will allow you to see your full Experian Credit Report, helping you understand what’s impacting your credit score and how to improve it. It’s also a good way to ensure your information is accurately recorded and up-to-date. It continuously monitors your report, alerting you to certain changes and letting you know about any potential fraudulent activity that it picks up.
There’s a 30 day free trial for the CreditExpert service which makes it ideal for a one-off full check of your credit file. A monthly fee of £14.99 applies after your free trial but you can cancel during your 30-day free trial without charge if you choose not to go ahead with the subscription.
(This offer applies to new customers only and the free trial period starts on registration – further ID verification may be required to access full service.)
I believe you’ll find the details of anyone linked to you financially in the connections section of your full credit report, obviously you can’t do anything about the ones that are accurate at this point if you are still financially linked to these people with a current association (such as a mortgage you have together now) but if any of them are incorrect, you can issue a notice of disassociation to notify potential lenders of the error.
How to issue a notice of disassociation
This is the easy part! You just need to contact each of the three main credit reference agencies individually.
You can access the forms you require here:
Don’t forget though, it works both ways.
If you’re financially linked to someone with an amazing credit file then they could be having a positive impact on your credit file so this process doesn’t always increase your credit score.
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