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When will personal information that was included on an individual’s credit report before 12 March 2014 be removed?

The new credit reporting laws (the new laws), which commence on 12 March 2014, regulate what personal information can be included on an individual’s credit report, and how that information can be handled. This includes how long that information can be retained on an individual’s credit report.

From 12 March 2014, any personal information permitted to be included on an individual’s credit report must be handled in accordance with the new laws. This includes personal information that was in a credit report before that date. This means that the new laws will determine how long that information can be held on an individual’s credit report. 

How long information is permitted to be kept on an individual’s credit report varies depending on the type of information. Under the new laws, some of the retention periods have been shortened, while others are unchanged. Importantly, once the relevant retention period ends, the personal information must be removed from the individual’s credit report within 1 month.

Where the retention period has been shortened, the new shorter retention period applies. Importantly, the new retention period will apply from the date that information was first included on the credit report, and not from the 12 March 2014. This means, for example, that any information included on an individual’s credit report prior to 12 March 2014, for which the new retention period has expired, must be removed by 12 April 2014, even if the old retention period may not have expired. 

As well, personal information that does not meet the criteria in the new laws for inclusion on an individual’s credit report or is not covered by the transitional provision in paragraph 5.1 of the new credit reporting privacy code cannot remain on an individual’s credit report after 12 March 2014. An example of this would be defaults of less than $150.

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