Press Releases

McHenry Reintroduces Bill to Preserve Americans’ Access to Credit

Washington, March 11, 2021 -

Ahead of today’s Consumer Protection and Financial Institutions Subcommittee hearing on helping consumers during the pandemic, Republican leader Patrick McHenry (NC-10) reintroduced legislation to support Americans’ access to credit. H.R. 1645, the Protecting Consumer Access to Credit Act, would make commonsense reforms to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) to ensure accurate and secure credit profiles—a necessity for Americans’ continued economic recovery and future financial success. 

“Access to credit can make the difference between being able to purchase a home, car, or send a child to college—and not,” said Ranking Member McHenry. “An accurate and secure credit profile is the best way to ensure Americans can achieve these goals. My legislation would remove certain adverse credit information incurred at no fault of the consumer, including paid, non-elective medical debt. H.R. 1645 would also secure Americans’ most personal information at a time when cybersecurity risks are at an all-time high. These commonsense reforms to FCRA are needed now more than ever as we exit the pandemic and work to ensure all Americans can take part in our nation’s recovery.”

Specifically, the Protecting Consumer Access to Credit Act:

  • Removes all paid, non-elective medical debt from a consumer’s credit report to help those who have been impacted by illnesses.
  • Ensures a consumer found to have been impacted by predatory mortgage or student lending or financial abuse, as determined by a court of law or through a settlement agreement, will have the negative information removed from his or her consumer report.
  • Prevents credit reporting agencies from using Social Security numbers for verification purposes.
  • Grants the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) authority to oversee the cybersecurity efforts of the credit reporting agencies.
  • Addresses the inefficient process used by credit reporting agencies for a parent to request a security freeze of their child’s credit.

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