|Posted:||May 12, 2020 10:07 AM|
|From:||Representative Malcolm Kenyatta|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Protecting Consumer Credit Reports during COVID-19|
|The novel Coronavirus has placed a new financial burden on countless Pennsylvania families, many of whom have had to, for the first time in their lives, look to new ways to make ends meet. Some families have endured the temporary lapse of a paycheck, while they waited for federal stimulus money, or for their unemployment compensation to start. Others have relied on credit cards, or sought unplanned loans from financial institutions, or even their friends.
Even as Pennsylvania begins to reopen, many hard-working Pennsylvanians still face an uphill battle to get their finances back on solid ground. Pennsylvanians are starting to re-evaluate their monthly family budget, and figuring out how to move forward with their regular family bills, while trying to find the extra money to repay their loans or extra credit card debt, with interest.
I am offering a proposal that would give all Pennsylvanians the assurance that they will be able to rebuild their lives and their finances, without suffering the consequences of COVID-19 for years to come.
My bill would amend the Credit Reporting Agency Act to require credit agencies to refrain from negative reporting of any missed or late payments, or other impacts from the financial hardships that have hit so many Pennsylvanians during the COVID-19 disaster emergency, and for 90 days after the end of the declaration.
A consumer’s credit report and their credit score will determine not only how much interest they will have to pay on a loan, but also whether or not they even can qualify for a loan, or a mortgage. Employers, insurers, and rental property owners also routinely check this information in making decisions on applicants.
Even a single missed payments can wreck the credit score of someone who has never been late on a payment for 10 or more years. And, it will take years for that consumer to rebuild their record and score.
No family has escaped the devastating reach of COVID-19, whether it was a personal loss of a close family member or friend, or trying to find creative ways to put food on the table and a roof over their family’s heads.
The next steps that we take with proposals like this one, will be the life-line that many Pennsylvanians need to be able to afford to put their family’s budget back on solid ground, and to ensure that they do not suffer the financial consequences of COVID-19 for years to come.
I ask for your support in asking are credit reporting agencies to be part of the solution.
Introduced as HB2554