Regulator clarifies credit amnesty

Johannesburg - The National Credit Regulator on Wednesday clarified the “credit amnesty”, a new regulation pertaining to the credit records of consumers which came into effect last month.

“The removal of adverse consumer credit information and information relating to paid up judgments... came into effect on 1

April,” the regulator's chief executive Nomsa Motshegare said in a statement.

“This meant that from April 1 all registered credit bureaux should remove adverse consumer credit information on their systems for a period of two months until the end of May 2014.”

Information that needed to be removed from profiles included the classification of consumer behaviour, such as “delinquent, default, slow paying, or absconded”, and enforcement action like “handed over for collection, legal action or write-off”.

The credit bureau also needed to remove details and results of disputes lodged by consumers, irrespective of the outcome.

Motshegare said paid up civil court or default judgments should also be removed from credit records.

“Where a consumer has paid the judgment debt, the credit provider must notify the credit bureau of this within seven days of receiving the payment,” she said.

“The credit bureau must remove that judgment from the consumer's credit record within seven days of receiving proof of payment.”

Motshegare, however, warned that consumers were liable for their debts despite receiving a clean slate.

After two months, it would revert back to how it was, the NCR said. - Sapa