Not in all cases.
There is no dollar limit that triggers a credit file check. In fact applications for services such as the purchase of mobile phones and the associated airtime may even appear as zero on your credit file. This is because the amount of the applicants' potential monthly bill is unknown. The same applies to electricity and gas providers.
Equifax collects credit information directly from you as the consumer, from our subscribers (including banks, finance companies and other credit providers), or from public sources.
Our subscribers may supply your name, addresses, date of birth, gender, employer, occupation and the type of credit account you applied for. Details may also be provided relating to your repayment history on existing credit accounts you hold with a credit provider.
We also use information from public sources such as court records and newspapers, and other publicly available publications and databases.
A payment default is in simple terms an overdue account. In most cases they arise when a debt owed by you has become overdue (i.e. not paid within 30 days of the payment date printed on the Invoice by the credit provider).
Default information can be listed on your credit report if:
- your account has been outstanding for 30 days or longer
- you have not responded to the credit providers letters to pay the debt and they have written the account off
- you have not responded to the credit providers letters to pay the debt and they referred your account to a solicitor, collection agency or repossession agency to recover the debt on their behalf.
All overdue payment defaults may only be listed by the credit provider when they have taken the necessary steps to recover the whole, or any part of the debt owed by you. In all cases the credit provider must have requested the borrower (that is you), either in person or in writing, to pay the outstanding amount.
When you have paid the outstanding amount owing or brought your account up to date the credit provider is obliged by law to amend your credit file to reflect that the overdue account has been paid. When this happens an amended credit file is then automatically forwarded to any credit provider that may have requested a credit file on you 30 days prior to the update being made.
All payment defaults which are unpaid or overdue accounts remain listed on your credit file for a period of five (5) years, unless an investigation proves that the account was listed in error then in this case the information can be deleted by Equifax, provided the necessary documents provided demonstrate this.
Most credit providers look unfavourably on customers with a history of overdue accounts and other adverse information on file.
Where an overdue account showing on your file has been paid but not updated, call the credit provider or collection agent named on that entry and request they contact Equifax to make the correction.
Your credit file will be updated within five days of the credit provider notifying us that the account is paid.
Where an overdue account is showing that is not yours call the credit provider or collection agent named on that entry and give them the applicable reference number so they can investigate. If justified, the subscriber will then inform Equifax and the incorrect data will be removed.
Equifax Score Rating is a service where all of the information on your credit file is evaluated to produce a single score out of 1,000. When you apply for credit, this rating is calculated at the time of application by a mathematical equation which analyses multiple types of information from your credit file, and then compares this information to the patterns of a vast number of past credit files.
The Equifax Score Rating estimates your level of future credit risk and your ability to repay the amount that you will owe. Credit providers and other companies who have the authority to access your credit file in accordance to the Credit Reporting Privacy Code 2004 (the Code) can use your Equifax Score Rating to assess your intention and ability to make payments.
The ability to quickly, fairly and consistently consider all of this information, including the relationships between different types of information, is what makes credit scoring so useful.
Your Equifax Score Rating is included with your credit report.
Note: We do not score credit files where insolvency information is present.
As a consumer living in New Zealand, you have rights under the Privacy Act 1993 in relation to the access, storage and use of your personal credit information. The Privacy Act promotes and protects consumer privacy.
It has established privacy principles in relation to:
- The collection, use and disclosure by public and private sector agencies, of information relating to consumers.
- The access by each consumer to, and correction of, information relating to them which is held by public and private agencies.
The Privacy Act establishes 12 privacy principles:
- Principles 1,2,3 and 4 relate to the collection of personal information.
- Principles 5 and 9 relate to the storage of personal information.
- Principles 6 and 7 relate to the access and correction of personal information.
- Principles 8 and 10 relate to the use of personal information.
- Principle 11 relates to the disclosure of personal information.
- Principle 12 relates to the use of unique identifiers.
The Credit Reporting Privacy Code 2004 has been issued under the Privacy Act, and provides specific rights in relation to credit information held by Veda as part of our Consumer Credit Reporting Business.
Equifax supports the Code’s approach to promoting fairness, accuracy, and privacy in the practice of credit reporting.
You have certain rights with regard to personal credit information that we hold about you. In particular you can:
- access your own personal credit information
- request incorrect information to be amended or a statement of correction to be added to your credit file
- expect the information to be safely stored, and used by or disclosed only to authorised people