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Privacy fact sheet 36: When will the information on your credit report be deleted

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May 2014

Credit reporting ‘know your rights’ series no. 11

This fact sheet is the eleventh in a series that outlines what you need to know about how your personal information can be handled in the Australian consumer credit reporting system. It contains information about how long personal information can be included in your consumer credit report. There are lots of technical terms used in the credit reporting system and we refer to some of those terms in this series. You can find more information about these terms in no. 2 (Privacy fact sheet 27) of this series.

How long can personal information be included in your credit report?

The table below outlines how long each type of personal information can be held in your consumer credit report. A credit reporting body (CRB) must remove personal information within 1 month of the end of the relevant period.

How long can personal information be held in my credit report?
Personal information in your credit report Retention period
  • your full name
  • your date of birth
  • your sex
  • your current (or last known) address and previous 2 addresses
  • the name of your current (or last known) employer
  • your driver’s licence number
No limit provided the CRB holds at least one other type of personal information that can be included in your consumer credit report
  • the name of any credit providers that have provided you with consumer credit and whether they are licenced by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
  • the type of consumer credit provided by those credit providers
  • the day on which that consumer credit was made available to you and (if relevant) terminated
  • the limit on that consumer credit
  • certain terms and conditions of that consumer credit, including limited information about your repayment and interest obligations
2 years starting on the day the contract for consumer credit ends
  • repayment history information
2 years starting on the day that the consumer credit payment was due to be paid
  • that a credit provider has requested access to information held in your consumer credit report in connection with an application that you have made to that credit provider for consumer or commercial credit
  • the type and amount of consumer or commercial credit that you sought in that application
5 years starting on the day that the credit provider made the request
  • that you have defaulted on a consumer credit payment of $150 or more, this means that you are at least 60 days overdue in making the payment
  • a statement that you have since paid an amount that was recorded as default in your consumer credit report
5 years starting on the day that the credit provider disclosed the default to the CRB for inclusion in your consumer credit report
  • the fact that, as a result of a default, you have agreed to a variation in the terms and conditions of consumer credit or you are provided with new consumer credit
2 years starting on the day that the credit provider disclosed the default to the CRB for inclusion in your consumer credit report
  • any court judgements made against you in relation to credit
5 years starting on the day that the court judgement was made
  • a bankruptcy

Whichever is later:

  • 5 years starting on the day you became bankrupt, or
  • 2 years starting on the day that you were no longer bankrupt
  • a debt agreement proposal that you have given

The period ending on the day that:

  • you withdraw the proposal
  • the credit provider refused the proposal
  • the acceptance of your proposal was cancelled, or
  • the proposal lapsed under s185ED of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • a debt agreement

Whichever is later:

  • 5 years starting on the day the agreement was made, or
  • 2 years starting on the day that the agreement:
    • was terminated,
    • ends under s185N of the Bankruptcy Act 1966, or
    • an order was made declaring the agreement void
  • a personal insolvency agreement

Whichever is later:

  • 5 years starting on the day the agreement was executed, or
  • 2 years starting on the day that the agreement was terminated or a certificate was signed under s232 of the Bankruptcy Act 1966
  • a direction or an order under s50 of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 to take control of your property
  • the day on which the control of property ends
  • an authority signed by you under s188 of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 authorising a third party to take control of your property
  • the day the property is no longer subject to control
  • the opinion of a credit provider that you have committed a serious credit infringement
7 years starting on the day that the credit provider disclosed the opinion to the CRB for inclusion in your consumer credit report

What about information created from personal information included in your credit report?

At the same time that the CRB removes the personal information, it must also remove any assessment of your creditworthiness (including an assessment of your eligibility to be provided with credit) that it has produced using the personal information that is being removed.

This would include, for example, a credit score that was calculated using personal information that is no longer permitted to be held in your consumer credit report. A CRB would need to calculate a new credit score without using that information.

What if a correction request or complaint has not been finalised?

A CRB must not destroy personal information that is the subject of a correction request or a complaint until that request or complaint has been resolved.

When will personal information that was included in your credit report before 12 March 2014 be removed?

The credit reporting laws determine how long personal information can be held on your consumer credit report. This applies irrespective of when the personal information was first included in your consumer credit report. For more information please see Privacy Topics – Credit and Finance.

For further information

telephone: 1300 363 992
email: enquiries@oaic.gov.au
write: GPO Box 5218, Sydney NSW 2001
Or visit our website at www.oaic.gov.au