Published: November 2022

Agencies should ensure that hurricane victims are protected from negative credit reporting in aftermath of disaster

In a letter to CFPB, OCC, FHFA, FHA, FDIC, NCUA and FRB, Consumer Action and 25 other advocacy organizations urged agencies to help protect the credit reports and scores of consumers impacted by Hurricane Fiona and Hurricane Ian.

Tens of thousands of Americans were severely impacted by Hurricanes Fiona and Ian, both physically and financially. Consumers have lost their homes, had their jobs interrupted, suffered other unexpected expenses, and/or face dislocation for many months. The last thing these beleaguered consumers need is damage to their credit reports and scores from bills that they unavoidably missed due to the aftermath of these hurricanes, through no fault of their own. Consumer Action and 25 other advocacy organizations wrote to the CFPB, OCC, FHFA, FHA, FDIC, NCUA and FRB, urging the agencies to encourage the lenders that they regulate or oversee to refrain from reporting negative information for hurricane victims to the nationwide consumer reporting agencies (CRAs)—Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. At a minimum, wrote the organizations, lenders should be encouraged to follow the credit reporting provisions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Specifically, if a consumer is able to obtain an accommodation from a lender (a forbearance, a payment deferral, a partial payment agreement, or a loan modification), then the lender should report the same status for the account as it stood prior to the accommodation (assuming the consumer is in compliance with the terms of the accommodation).

Lead Organization

National Consumer Law Center

More Information

Read the letter here.

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