Rights and options
Why is credit rating important?
Credit has become part and parcel of life
for many in Ireland. Wherever you look, on
television, radio or in the newspapers, adverts
urge us to take out loans to buy goods or
services. Often people use credit for daily
essentials such as buying the groceries or
running a car – as a result, not having access
to credit can affect our whole way of living.
You will often hear or see in adverts phrases
such as ‘terms and conditions apply’ or ‘loans
subject to status’. Though it often seems they
want to lend as much as possible, in reality
banks and financial institutions need to satisfy
themselves that potential borrowers will be
able to repay the credit offered to them. For
this reason, the majority contribute towards
an agency, the Irish Credit Bureau.
What does the Irish Credit Bureau do?
The Bureau keeps computerised records
regarding credit agreements involving member
companies and their customers. Around 40
financial institutions, mainly banks, building
societies and finance houses, are registered
members of the Bureau.
Do I have a right to credit?
No, nobody has a right to credit, but you do
have a right to know what information is held
about your credit standing by the Bureau and
other agencies, and to have inaccurate
information corrected. This leaflet explains
how you can go about this and how the
credit rating system operates.
What rights do I have with regard
to information held about me?
Your right to know what information is held
about you and to correct inaccurate information
varies depending on whether the information
is held on computer or not.
All Irish Credit Bureau records are kept on
computer. When you enter a credit agreement
with a bank, building society or finance
company, a condition of such agreements
(normally contained in the small print and often
on the loan application form) is that you agree
that the financial institution may use the data
supplied for the purpose of credit checking.
As a result,