CREDIT AMNESTY

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Mike asks:

How do I ap­ply for credit amnesty?

City Press replies:

The credit amnesty was a one-off event in 2014. Ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional Credit Reg­u­la­tor (NCR), the ef­fect of the credit amnesty was to re­move all ad­verse in­for­ma­tion from a con­sumer’s credit record held at the credit bureaus as at 1st April 2014 by 1st June 2014.

All judg­ments that had been paid up from a con­sumer’s credit record with the credit bureaus had to be removed. At no point did the credit amnesty re­move the obli­ga­tion to re­pay the debt.

Although the credit amnesty pe­riod closed in 2014, there are pro­vi­sions which re­main in place, in­clud­ing amend­ments to the Na­tional Credit Act (NCA), which re­quire that all ad­verse in­for­ma­tion and judg­ments which had been paid up now must be removed from the records of the credit bureau within seven days of re­ceipt of con­fir­ma­tion of such paid-up sta­tus from a credit provider.

The NCR says that prior to the credit amnesty, when a con­sumer had an ad­verse list­ing or a judg­ment which they set­tled, the list­ing would re­main on the con­sumer’s credit record at the credit bureaus un­til the re­ten­tion pe­riod set out in Reg­u­la­tion 17 of the NCA had ex­pired or, in the case of a judg­ment, the con­sumer was obliged to go to court and re­scind the judg­ment at their own cost.

One of the other amend­ments made to the NCA, was to Reg­u­la­tion 17 – the max­i­mum dis­play pe­ri­ods of con­sumer credit in­for­ma­tion – in terms of which the pe­riod of dis­play of ad­verse in­for­ma­tion was amended from two years to one year. The im­por­tant point is that ad­verse in­for­ma­tion can­not re­main on your record if the debt is fully re­paid.

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