Press Releases

Republicans Fight Democrat Proposals to Impede Credit Access, Increase Cost
Democrats push through four partisan bills that would significantly impact access to credit for all Americans


Washington, July 12, 2019 -

WASHINGTON – House Financial Services Committee Democrats brought several pieces of legislation before the full committee for a markup. In all, ten bills were considered, six of which addressed diversity and inclusion and housing, receiving bipartisan support.

However, the remaining four bills to amend the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), received solely Democrat, partisan backing. Republicans expressed concern with the legislations’ lack of clarity and its potential negative impact on access to credit as well as the cost of credit for all Americans. Despite efforts by Congressmen Tom Emmer (MN-06) and Barry Loudermilk (GA-11), who offered amendments to improve the legislation, committee Democrats chose not to accept input from Republicans and passed the partisan legislation, ensuring it will not be signed into law.

Republican leader of the committee, Patrick McHenry (NC-10), opened the hearing by highlighting the rushed nature of the FCRA reform legislation. Watch here or by clicking on the image below.

Ranking Member McHenry: “This committee has held one hearing on the topic of credit reporting, and that was back in February. And when I say ‘on the topic’ I say that in the loosest form possible … not necessarily on the contents of reforming the Fair Credit Reporting Act. However, there was just one discussion draft of a bill attached with a hearing notice, yet, this draft, was not discussed once during the hearing. Not once. Now, six months later, without further discussion, we’re considering these bills that would make significant changes to the Fair Credit Reporting Act.”

H.R. 3618, the Free Credit Scores for Consumers Act of 2019:

  • Creates a complex process by which furnishers will be required to provide each previous credit score in a consumer’s file.
  • Requires furnishers to erase any previous consumer credit scores within a two-year period, necessary data to determine the creditworthiness of borrowers.
  • Ultimately restricts access to credit.

H.R. 3614, the Restricting Use of Credit Checks for Employment Decisions Act of 2019:

  • Allows credit checks in limited circumstances, including when authorized by a federal, state, or local law requiring an employer to obtain a report.
  • These exemptions do not encompass the universe of employers where an employee’s financial history may play a role, specifically the financial services space, where employees have access to the personal and financial information of millions of Americans.
  • Ultimately exposing Americans’ information to workers with a high potential for fraud or embezzlement.

H.R. 3622, the Restoring Unfairly Impaired Credit and Protecting Consumers Act:

  • Makes fundamental changes to the underwriting necessary for consumer lending.
  • Mandates the expedited removal of debt, which undermines the safety and soundness of financial institutions and our financial system, which will result in unintended consequences for less-than-pristine borrowers. 
  • Provides no evidence to support the arbitrary new timelines.

H.R. 3642, the Improving Credit Reporting for All Consumers Act:

  • Alters the credit reporting dispute process by creating a new reinvestigation and appeal process for reinvestigations.
  • The new processes are cumbersome and time consuming, both for the consumer, furnisher, and credit reporting agency; ultimately benefitting the trial bar more than the consumer.
  • Adds layers of bureaucracy on credit reporting agencies and furnishers, ultimately leading to diminished underwriting standards and a reduction in credit availability for Americans.

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