Understanding Your Experian Credit Report

Understanding Your Experian Credit Report loading="lazy"

Staying on top of your credit history is important to your financial well-being—and knowing what is in your credit report is the first step. Depending on where you obtain your Experian credit report, you may notice that the information is presented differently or in varying formats.

All Experian credit reports contain the information you need to assess your entire credit history. Below are the types of information you may see on your Experian credit report. The categories or order of information shown in this guide may differ from the version of your credit report you're looking over.

Potentially negative items in your report include information on any account that was not paid as agreed, including late payments, accounts that have been charged off or sent to collections and accounts settled for less than the full amount owed. Bankruptcies are also considered negative and will appear in the public records section of your report.

Experian doesn't make judgments about the information in your credit report, negative or otherwise. The list of potentially negative items is provided as a service to direct your attention to what Experian thinks lenders are likely to consider negative when reviewing your credit history. For example, if you have missed payments in the past, potential lenders and others viewing your credit report are likely to view this as a sign of risk.

Personal Information

This information is reported to Experian by you, your creditors and/or other sources. Each source may report your information differently, which may result in variations of your name, address, Social Security number and so on. For example, if you sign one application with your middle initial and another without, both variations of your name may appear on your credit report. This is used for identification purposes only, so these variations will not have any impact on your credit score. Here are some examples of the types of personal information you'll see on your credit report:

Name(s) Associated With Your Credit
Lillie T. Lane
Name ID #00001
Lillie Lane
Name ID #00002
Lilly Lane
Name ID #00003
Your credit report will list all of the name variations reported to us by your creditors, so both your current name and any previous names used may appear. Experian maintains all these names so you have a complete record of what has been reported. This is used for identification purposes only and does not factor into your credit score. For your protection, names are typically not disputable online. If you see a name appearing on your credit report that you have never used, you can request that the information be removed.
The name identification number is used to identify which accounts are associated with each individual name variation.
Social Security Number Variations
For your protection, the Social Security number you used to obtain your credit report is not displayed, so you should not see your correct Social Security number on the report. However, if any of your lenders have reported a different Social Security number than the one you gave us when you requested your credit report, those variations will be displayed.
Address(es) Associated With Your Credit
840 Stillwater Rd Bldg. B
Sacramento, CA 95605
Address ID: 0546873687
Apartment Complex
840 Stillwater Rd
Sacramento, CA 95605
Address ID: 0546875675
Apartment Complex
Addresses are listed on your credit report when they are reported to Experian by your creditors. Any address that you have provided to a lender or that you have used to receive mail may appear on your report. For that reason, many people have work addresses, post office boxes, and even the address of a friend or family member listed. This does not affect your creditworthiness and is usually not cause for concern.
The address identification number is used to identify which accounts are associated with each individual address variation.
The type of residence associated with an address may include Single Family or Apartment Complex.
Year of Birth
1978
Your date of birth as reported by creditors.
Phone Numbers
260-555-5555260-555-0000
Personal identification information, such as your telephone number, is typically reported by your creditors when you apply for credit. It does not affect your creditworthiness or your credit scores.
Spouse or Co-Applicant
James N. Lane
If you have or have had a joint account with a spouse, other family member or friend, that individual's name may appear here. Guarantors, also called cosigners, co-applicants, or joint account holders have the same responsibility with regard to the debt. Cosigners and joint account holders are both equally responsible for repayment of the debt. Therefore, the account will appear on both the primary account holder's and co-applicant's credit report.
Current or Former Employers
XYZ Corporation
Some lenders may include the employer name you provided to them when reporting your account information. Your employer section may include both current and previous employer names. The names of employers provided on your credit report are not designed to represent a complete employment history. Rather, the list can help in verifying your identity.
Personal Statements
FILE LOCKED AT CONSUMERS REQUEST
There are different types of personal statements that can be added to a credit report. These can include a consumer-initiated statement, security freeze, fraud alert, credit lock, consumer deceased, power of attorney or a minor statement.

Accounts

Accounts in a credit report include revolving credit accounts and installment loans. This information is reported to the credit bureaus by your creditors. Accounts in good standing reflect your creditors' reports that you have satisfactorily met the terms of your agreements with them and all payments have been made on time. Lenders are not required to report account information to the credit reporting companies. Some lenders may choose to report to only one or two of the three major credit reporting companies (Experian, TransUnion and Equifax), and some choose not to report to any. Therefore, it is possible to have an account that does not appear on your credit report. This section may also include up to two years of your monthly balances on an account if it has been reported by your creditor. Here are some examples:

Account Information
Account NamePersonal Loan Company
The name of the lender or account holder. In some cases, this name may be different from the name you see on your credit card or account statement. If you do not recognize the name displayed here, you can use other identifying information, such as the account open date and original amount or limit to identify the account.
Account Number137995XXXXXXXX
Full account numbers are not provided with your personal credit report. Experian truncates the numbers so they cannot be used to commit fraud by someone who steals your report or somehow accesses it without your permission.
Account StatusOpen, Current
The status indicates the state of the account as reported by the creditor. One of the most common are past-due amounts and these can be reported as 30, 60, 90, 120 or 150 days late. Typically, lenders will send accounts to collections 3 to 6 months after a payment defaults. Other common statuses include: open, paid, closed, refinanced, transferred and foreclosed.
Date OpenedJul 07, 2019
The date when your account was opened as reported by your creditor.
Account TypeInstallment Sales Contract
The types of records appearing on your credit report, such as mortgages, student loans, auto loans, credit cards, charge cards and service accounts.
Credit Limit / Original Amount$1,700
For revolving accounts, this will indicate the current credit limit on the account. If the account is an installment loan, this will show the original amount of the loan.
Payment Information
Payment StatusCurrent, was past due 30 days three times
A brief message describing your payment history with a specific account.
Payment Status DateJan 2021
Date the creditor last reported information about the account payment status.
Past-Due Amount-
The amount currently past due as reported by the creditor. The past-due amount would only reflect the amount past due, and not necessarily the total amount owed. For instance, an account could have a past-due balance of $25 but a current cumulative balance of $50.
Monthly Payment$74
For installment accounts, this is the monthly payment amount agreed upon with your creditor. For revolving accounts, this is typically the minimum monthly payment due on the balance of your account.
Late PaymentsAug 2020
Dec 2020
May 2020
The dates associated with payments not made on time for the account.
Additional Information
ResponsibilityIndividual
This indicates your association with the account, such as individual, joint, cosigner or authorized user. Since authorized users are not responsible for making payments on an account, you may contact the creditor and request to be removed if you no longer wish to be associated with the account.
Terms24 Months
The length of an installment loan's term. Typically, payments are required on a monthly basis. If the loan is not of an installment type, a short description of the agreement may be shown. For example, "bank credit cards" or "revolving" may be shown if the account is a credit card.
Comments-
Comments or notes added to the account by the creditor or at the request of the consumer.
Your Statements-
This type of personal statement is an account-specific statement, which is linked to a specific entry in your credit history. Account-specific statements are deleted at the same time as the account. Account-specific statements can take one of two forms: "statement of explanation" or "statement of dispute." Both the consumer's and creditor's statements of the account status will appear on the credit report. This statement will display to anyone who reviews your credit information.
Contact Information
Contact180001 ALLEGHENY RIVER BLVD
VERONA, PA 15147
(412) 555-5555
This is the contact information provided by the creditor for this account. In some cases, there may only be an address available.
Payment History
The payment status shows whether it is current/on-time and the payment history shows whether it was late previously. Examples of payment status:

  • ND or dash ("-"): No data for this time period
  • OK: Current/terms of agreement met
  • 30 to 180: The number of days past due
  • CLS: Closed
  • BK: Chapter 13 bankruptcy
  • C: Collection
  • CO: Charge off
  • D: Defaulted on contract
  • F: Foreclosed
  • FS: Foreclosure proceedings started
  • G: Claim filed with government
  • IC: Insurance claim
  • PBC: Paid by creditor
  • R: Repossession
  • VS: Voluntary surrender

Collections

When an account becomes seriously past due, the creditor may decide to turn the account over to an internal collection department or sell the debt to a collection agency. Once an account is sold to a collection agency, the collection account can then be reported as a separate account on your credit report. Collection accounts have a significant negative impact on your credit scores. Here's how collection accounts will appear on your report:

Account Information
Account NameSW Credit Services
The name of the account holder. If you do not recognize the name displayed here, you can use other identifying information, such as the collection open date or original loan amount in order to identify the account
Account Number261114XXXXXXXXXX
The unique number assigned by a creditor to identify your account with them. Experian hides several digits of the account number to protect your information from identity theft.
Collection OpenedJan 23, 2021
Indicates the date the collection account was opened.
Account TypeCollection Department / Agency / Attorney
The types of records appearing on your credit report, such as mortgages, student loans, auto loans, credit cards, charge cards and service accounts.
Original CreditorNatural Gas Co.
Generally speaking, the original creditor is the company or agency that gave you the loan or credit. When a collection agency reports a collection account to your credit history, the name of the original creditor will be listed as well.
Payment Information
Original Loan Amount$541
The original amount owed on the account.
Balance$541
The current amount owed on the account.
Status DateJan 2021
Date the creditor last reported information about the account payment status.
Additional Information
Comments-
Comments or notes added to the account by the creditor or at the request of the consumer.
Your Statements-
This type of personal statement is an account-specific statement, which is linked to a specific entry in your credit history. Account-specific statements are deleted at the same time as the account. Account-specific statements can take one of two forms: "statement of explanation" or "statement of dispute." Both the consumer's and creditor's statements of the account status will appear on the credit report. This statement will display to anyone who reviews your credit information.
Contact Information
Contact100023 YORK RD STE 123
JENKINTOWN, PA 19046
By Mail Only
This is the contact information provided by the collection agency for this account. In some cases, there may only be an address available.

Public Records

Bankruptcy is the only public record that will appear on your credit history. Bankruptcy is a legal proceeding under which a person is provided relief from debts they are unable to pay. There are two primary forms of bankruptcy filed by consumers: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. They are called "chapters" because they are defined by chapters in the bankruptcy law. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you do not repay any of the debt owed. Under Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are responsible for paying back a portion of the debts that you owe through a debt repayment plan.

If your report contains public records, the Public Records section includes items from courts that Experian may have obtained through LexisNexis Risk Data Management Inc., a third-party vendor. You may contact them at LexisNexis Consumer Center, P.O. Box 105615, Atlanta, GA 30348-5108, or by visiting https://experianconsumers.lexisnexis.com.

Public Record - Bankruptcy
CourtUS BKPT CT IN INDIANAP
The name of the court in which the public record was filed.
Record TypeBankruptcy Chapter 7-discharged
The type of bankruptcy and whether it is a petition, discharge or dismissal.
Original Filing DateSep 15, 2017
The date the bankruptcy was filed on as reported by the court involved. A dollar amount may also be shown representing the amount discharged or the amount the bankruptcy was filed for. Chapter 13 bankruptcy will remain in the credit report for 7 years from the filing date. Chapter 7 bankruptcy remains on the credit report for 10 years from the filing date.
Latest Status DateMay 10, 2018
The last date when the bankruptcy status changed.
Reference Number9409625
The number that corresponds to where the public record was recorded at the court; for bankruptcies, it will be the docket number.
Your Statements-
Statements are typically added if you disagree with the outcome of a previous dispute. Statements will remain on your credit report for as long as the item appears on your report and will display to anyone who reviews your credit information. You can choose from preset statement options or add a personally written statement by mailing your request.

Credit Inquiries

When applying for credit or financing, or as a result of a collection attempt, a hard inquiry may appear on your credit report. Hard inquiries stay on your credit report for two years. Soft inquiries are usually initiated by others, such as companies making promotional offers of credit or your lender conducting periodic reviews of your existing credit accounts. Soft inquiries also occur when you check your own credit report or when you use credit monitoring services from companies like Experian. These inquiries do not impact your credit score. Soft inquiries are not disputable but are available here for reference.

Inquiries are not currently disputable online through the Dispute Center. If you believe an inquiry is the result of identity theft, the inquiry can be disputed by phone with the help of an Experian Specialist. You can find the support number at Experian's Dispute Center. Here's how inquiries will appear on your credit report:

Hard Inquiries
Business NameWorldwide Adjusters
Typically, accounts listed are the names of a lender granting potential credit initiated by you. There are other organizations that may have a permissible purpose to access your credit.
Business TypeOther Collection Agencies
Typical business types may include: automobile dealers or financing companies, all banks and mortgage reporters.
Inquiry DateJan 2021
The date or dates when inquiries were initiated. Multiple dates may show if multiple inquiries were made by the same lender or organization.
Removal DateFeb 2023
Inquiries are maintained for two years from the date of request.
Contact Info500008 S SEMORAN BLVD STE
ORLANDO, FL 32822
(407) 555-5555
This is the contact information provided by the creditor for this account. In some cases, there may only be an address available.
Soft Inquiries
Company NameDATAMYX/LOAN
Inquiry DateSep 2020
Contact Info20000064 TOWNE CENTRE DR
FOOTHILL RANCH CA, 92610
(888) 555-5555

Medical Information, Disputing and Your Rights

Medical Information

By law, Experian cannot disclose certain medical information (relating to physical, mental or behavioral health or condition). And while we do not collect or display medical information as part of your credit history, you may see the name of a medical provider listed as the original creditor on a collection agency account (such as "Cancer Center"). Although you can see the name of the original creditor that the collection debt was purchased from, it will display to your lenders and others viewing your credit report simply as "medical payment data." Consumer statements included on your report at your request that contain medical information are disclosed to others.

Disputing Information in Your Credit Report

If you feel that an item is being reported incorrectly, you may dispute it. We will generally process your dispute by sending it to the furnisher of the information or to the vendor who collected the information from a public record. The fastest and easiest way to dispute most information is online at Experian's Dispute Center. Be advised that written information or documents you provide with respect to your disputes may be shared with the creditor who is reporting the information you are disputing.

Learn more about How to Dispute Credit Report Information.

Know Your Rights

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a federal law that helps to ensure the accuracy, fairness and privacy of the information in consumer credit bureau files. The law regulates the way credit reporting agencies can collect, access, use and share the data they collect in your consumer reports.