Defaults - What to do if you have one

Posted by Sophie Regester in Credit Reports on 10 February 2017 - Sophie is a Senior Credit Analyst at checkmyfile.

You certainly don’t want a default on your credit file, but if due to circumstances you end up with one, you need to know the facts.

Defaults are reported for 6 years - whether you pay the balance or not, it will stay reported for this full time period unless it has been recorded in error.

If you believe a default reported against you is incorrect, you need to speak to lender reporting this to query it. If they agree they have made an error they have the power to correct this record, but this process can typically take 4-6 weeks. If the lender is unhelpful, the next option may be to dispute this record with the credit reference agency it has been reported to, or complain to the relevant regulator or ombudsman in an attempt to reach a resolution.

If a default is correct, you can pay it, partially satisfy the outstanding debt, or continue to leave the balance outstanding. If you pay the account, this should be marked as satisfied on your credit file and show a zero balance, but the original default will still be visible and will still have a severely negative impact on your file.

You may feel that if you pay the balance then this should reverse the negative impact of the default, however it is the fact that an account was allowed to fall into this negative status that carries with it the negative connotation and this fact remains regardless of what has happened after this fact.

If you partially settle the default, the account will typically be reported as partially satisfied and this status indicates that the account has been closed to the mutual agreement of both parties.

If you leave the account unpaid, you can still be chased for the balance as long as it remains outstanding, regardless of the 6 year reporting period. In some circumstances a default has been reported for 6 years then removed from the credit file, but then you still receive contact from a debt collector. Just because the record is no longer on your file doesn’t mean that the balance isn’t owed.

Check Your Multi-Agency Credit Report

30 Day Free Trial

How often should you check your Credit Report

Your Credit Report is a key component in lots of important life events. What it says about you could make or break a credit application and so it’s vital that you know for yourself what’s being reported.

Published on 2 Jul 2019 by Richard Catlin

Full Article

The Advantages of a Multi-Agency Credit Report

These days your Credit Report can be checked for any number of reasons throughout the year, including background checks during job applications, landlord checks and even from insurance or utility providers when you shop around for quotes.

Published on 17 May 2019 by Paul Anderson Riley

Full Article

What Lenders Want To See On Your Credit Report

Your Credit Report holds a huge amount of information about you and your past relationship with credit. It’s collated from a wide variety of sources, is always changing and plays a major part in any lending decision - but you shouldn’t be afraid of what it shows.

Published on 2 May 2019 by Sam Griffin

Full Article

What Credit Searches Mean

One of the most commonly misunderstood aspects of Credit Reports are the credit Search Footprints left on your report whenever someone accesses your file.

Published on 25 Apr 2019 by Kirstie Day

Full Article

How to dispute an account error on your report

Whether you’ve been turned down for credit in the past and have checked your Credit Report to make sure there’s nothing there harming your chances, you’re checking ahead of making an application, or you’re just looking to make sure everything is as it should be, there’s never a good time to find a mistake with the information on your report.

Published on 17 Apr 2019 by Kelly Luff

Full Article

Your Rights When Cancelling a New Credit Agreement

For most people applying for credit the main concern is whether or not they will be actually get accepted. But occasionally a change in circumstances (or even just a little time to reflect on your purchase) means that a bigger concern might be whether you can change your mind and withdraw from a credit agreement (be it a credit card, personal loan or other credit facility) after it’s been granted, potentially preventing you from taking on additional financial responsibility that you no longer want or need.

Published on 18 Mar 2019 by Tom Magor

Full Article

Creditworthiness and Affordability – Which is Which

When reading the small print on most applications for credit, you’ve probably noticed two words regularly popping up: Creditworthiness and Affordability. Both of these measures are used by a vast majority of lenders when assessing your application, so understanding what each one means goes a long way to explaining why you may or may not be accepted for credit.

Published on 22 Feb 2019 by Ben Tumilty

Full Article

What Information Is On My Credit Report?

If you’ve ever taken out a loan, credit card, or other form of finance, you’ll know that the difference between acceptance and rejection relies heavily on the outcome of what the lender finds when it checks your Credit Report.

Published on 4 Jan 2019 by Paul Anderson-Riley

Full Article

Can Right to Erasure Get Rid of Bad Credit History?

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR for short) was introduced on 25 May 2018 and unless you’ve managed to avoid the internet and checking your emails completely for the past year, you’re likely to have been bombarded with messages from nervous sounding websites updating their data policies.

Published on 3 Jan 2019 by Jamie Mackenzie Smith

Full Article

Why Searches Can’t Be Removed From Your Credit Report

The Searches section of your Credit Report shows you who has accessed the information on your Credit Report within the last couple of years. This effectively acts as a log of when you’ve checked your own Report, as well as a record of lenders checking as a result of applications for credit in your name. You’re also likely to see searches relating to prospective employers, landlords, insurance companies and other identity checks.

Published on 2 Jan 2019 by Beth Jennings

Full Article


We are rated number 1 for customer service on