Post # 1
I’m 24. I don’t have any credit cards. My total debt is a $2,500 student loan and $600 left to pay on a $1,000 bank loan. I make my payments on time, and I almost always pay more than the minimum. I got a forebearence on my student loan last year, but I’m having that lifted, because I can now make at least the minimum payments.
When I was 19, someone stole my driver’s license and took out a credit card in my name and charged a bunch of things on it. I didn’t find out about it until two years later. I’ve been fighting the collection agencies ever since…but it’s gotten me nowehere.
And there really does not seem to be much I can do myself. I’ve sent copies of the police report, I’ve disputed the debt, I’ve talked to person after person. I don’t have the money to hire a lawyer, and I don’t want to do as my father suggested–leave it alone and let it go away on it’s own in a few years. But I also don’t want to do as my husband suggested, which is pay the debt. To me, that’s admitting guilt.
My credit is destroyed–hovering around a 600. According to my family, it’s because of the ID theft. My sucky credit score is apparently what’s keeping me from getting a job. I’m at my wit’s end.
Does anyone have any advice? I’m open to any suggestions.
Post # 3
Well its not what is keeping you from getting a job because I’ve NEVER heard of a potential employer checking credit scores (I have a feeling it would be illegal for them to do so).
It sucks what you are going through and I definitely agree that you shouldn’t just pay the debt as it really isn’t your debt to pay. I’ve never dealt with this so I can’t really advise other than to keep fighting and hopefully it will all get straightened out soon!
Post # 4
Thanks for replying!
It isn’t illegal for a potential employer to check credit scores if it’s part of the background check. It’s in the fine print of the application–that they won’t even look at if you don’t sign.
I’m so going to end up hiring a lawyer.
Post # 5
Many companies look at credit scores as part of the applicant background check – especially if the company is in the financial or insurance business.
I’m sorry to hear this, you should be able to get resolution through the fair credit/reporting bureaus!
Post # 6
It’s not illegal for potential employers to check a job candidates credit score as part of the background check. They have to get consent from the candidate first, so you will definitley know if they are doing this.
I’ve worked for 3 different companies and all 3 have checked my credit score. It’s to protect themselves against hiring an employee who may potentially try to steal from the company and in general they like to know they are hiring someone responsible.
What happened to you really sucks. If you can pay off the debt, I would pay it just to get rid of the problem fast. I don’t know anything about hiring a lawyer to help with this issue, but if you think it will help then go for it. And you should definitely sign up for those credit monitoring services offered by freecreditreport.com, etc. so you can notice right away if something happens.
Post # 7
Ditto at the previous posters who have had their credit scores checked. I know prior background checks I have consented to have mentioned that they reserve the right to check your credit score. As to whether or not they actually have, I am not sure.
I am so sorry you are going through this, this makes me sick for you. As much as you probably don’t want to, I would hire an attorney.
Post # 8
There are companies that will check your credit score, especially if you are in a postition where you have information other people want. They don’t want someone to be tempted to sell information as a way to get out of personal financial trouble.
As far as what to do about identify theft, I don’t know how to get creditors to stop calling you and how to get it wiped from your name. Are there any fiancial lawyers or anything that could help you out?
Post # 9
What companies do background checks before hiring you? None of my background checks have ever taken place until after I’ve accepted an offer. They just then have the right to revoke it if something bad came up in the background check.
So unless you are having offers revoked after the background checks occur, I still stand by my previous statements that I don’t think this is the reason you aren’t finding a job.
Post # 10
Thanks for all the replies, ladies!
I’ve pretty much decided to just pay the debt. I am going to call the collection agency to see if they’ll bring it down some, but even if they won’t, it’s going to get paid. Filing fees and such for a lawyer would cost me more money.
@Mrs.KMM: Before hiring someone? None that I’m aware of. I always thought they did the background check after the interview. And you’re right, it may not be the reason I have not found a job yet. Could be that another candidate was available to work more than I am or the interviewer just thought I wasn’t a good fit for the job. But from what I’ve read and heard from other people, my credit score isn’t helping any.