Change to bankruptcy law doesn’t affect credit reports

Dear Experian,

We filed chapter 7, and it was discharged on Jan. 31, 2002. Because we were under the old law, the bankruptcy should be off our credit, right?



Dear EPE,

The federal bankruptcy law was amended, affecting the requirements for declaring bankruptcy and the bankruptcy chapter a person would qualify for when filing. However, it did not change how bankruptcy is reported in a credit report.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) specifies how bankruptcy is reported and for how long. Those requirements remain the same as they have been since the FCRA was first enacted more than 30 years ago.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy remains in a credit report for 10 years from the filing date. The discharge date has nothing to do with when a bankruptcy is removed. The status of the accounts included in the bankruptcy will be updated to state they are included in the bankruptcy.

Because accounts included in bankruptcy are usually already delinquent, they typically are deleted from your credit report before the bankruptcy public record.

If the bankruptcy filing is reported accurately, it will not be removed until the ten years have expired.

Thanks for asking.

- The “Ask Experian” team

Our policies for Ask Experian:

The information contained in Ask Experian is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. You should consult your own attorney or seek specific advice from a legal professional regarding your particular situation. Please understand that Experian policies change over time. Posts reflect Experian policy at the time of writing. While maintained for your information, archived posts may not reflect current Experian policy. The Ask Experian team cannot respond to each question individually. However, if your question is of interest to a wide audience of consumers, the Experian team will include it in a future post.