If you've just divorced, you know that there are a million different things to worry about. Aside from the emotional pain, financial stress and the children – you must worry about your credit. Do you have any lingering bills that are in your name and your ex spouse's name? Does he or she have the means to ruin your credit at all? This article discusses how to protect your credit after your divorce.
Cancel any Cards Your Ex Spouse Has Access To:
If your spouse has any cards that could adversely affect your credit, you need to cancel them right away. If there are any bills in your name that your spouse promises to pay on, cancel them right away. It doesn't matter if he or she swears up and down to pay the payment – there could be an accident, a mistake with bills or leftover bitterness that could end up ruining your credit. Make sure that you cancel all of your bills or payments that you do not have control over – this includes utilities or anything else. As long as you have total control of your bills, you know what's happening with them and you're in control.
Obtain a Free Credit Report:
Get a copy of your credit report and monitor everything that is on it. By keeping a close eye on your credit report, you will be able to notice any strange occurrences immediately and dispute them. It's also important for building your credit up, so make sure you take this step. You can get a free credit report at freecreditreport.com or by writing the three major credit bureaus. These are Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. If you notice anything on your credit report that does not belong there, dispute it right away. You can do this by sending a letter of dispute to all three bureaus, including all of the information about the bill as well as why it shouldn't be on your credit report or proof that it's not your bill. If it's a bill that's been paid already, send receipts to all three credit bureaus so they can take the bill off of your credit report.
Don't Let Your Bills Go Into Default:
Make sure that you are paying on all of your bills that could go against your credit report. Even if you're only paying the minimum payment at first, it will keep them from going against your credit. As you're able to get things straightened out, start paying more than the minimum payment – at least on the higher interest rate bills. This will help you dig out of any existing debt so that your credit will remain good and will not be damaged. If you need help keeping your bills off of your credit report, call the companies and talk with them. The worst thing you can do is avoid them. By talking with them, you can work out an easier payment plan or get an extension.
By monitoring your credit report, you can keep it in good standing and protect it. Use the above tips and suggestions for protecting your credit report after your divorce.