The Entitlement Society Goes After Free FICO Scores

iStock_000008416722XSmallIs there anything we aren’t entitled to these days – especially if we have a low income? Month by month, Congress is adding to the list of services that citizens can have for free.

Right now FICO scores are the target. Senator Mark Udall (D-Colorado) wants them provided to certain individual free of charge.

Never mind that credit score requirements are highly proprietary and expensive to determine. Never mind that the credit scoring companies must employ trained personnel to compile the scores. Apparently, companies like Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax have joined the ranks of those “big bad companies” who make too much money and should thus perform their services for free.

Senator Udall introduced the FACS Act, or Fair Access to Credit Scores Act, as an amendment to the far-reaching Wall Street Accountability legislation now in Congress. It has passed the Senate and is awaiting final approval.

He states that any time a person is turned down for credit, he or she is entitled to know the credit score that was used to determine the denial. At present, thanks to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, individuals who are turned down can request a copy of the credit report used in that determination, but not the scores.

Under the FACS Act, consumers will not even have to make the request. The credit report and the score will be sent to them automatically. In many, if not most cases, the score will be the FICO score, since it is the one most often used by banks and other lenders.

Does this place an unnecessary expense on the creditor? Of course it does. But apparently, that’s OK, because the creditor probably makes “too much money” anyway.

In arguing for his amendment, Senator Udall aks, “Would a doctor say that someone’s blood pressure reading is their information and not their patient’s?”

And of course they would not. But… the patient (or an insurance company or welfare agency) has paid the doctor to take that blood pressure reading, determine its significance, and convey the information to the patient.

Consumers who apply for mortgage loans are generally given their credit scores by their mortgage lenders. These consumers have paid in advance for their credit report. If their scores are low, their mortgage lender offers advice on raising the scores so they can qualify for a home loan. This is similar to the doctor who advises patients on ways to improve their blood pressure ratings.

When making application for credit cards and other kinds of loans, consumers generally do not pay. I believe that makes them ineligible to receive the scores, but under the FACS Act, it will become a “privilege.”

Author: Marte  your resource for the Credit FACTS…..

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