If you apply for credit and are denied, you will now get your credit score as well as access to your report.
Consumers have long been entitled to free access to their credit reports if they are rejected in an application for credit. This is the law, according to the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Under this statute, if you are denied credit, you can request a free copy of the report the creditor used to evaluate your application for credit.
Now, due to changes in the FCRA as amended by the “Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act,” (download full act text) consumers will also be given their credit score for free.
You will be entitled to a free credit report & score under various conditions, including a denial of credit. You’ll also get this disclosure if the creditor takes “adverse action,” which includes approving your credit application, but charging you a higher rate and/or fees due to your score. Any adverse action triggers this provision; if your current creditor raises your rate because of your score, you are entitled to request that score for free, even though you didn’t apply for new credit.
These new provisions apply to insurance companies as well, if they use your credit score to justify a higher insurance rate.
The Dodd-Frank bill also amended the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to provide creditors with specific disclosure requirements. That means the creditors have to include the disclosure in their adverse action letter, using specific language set out by the Federal Reserve Board. That means you won’t have to take extra steps to request your score; it will be provided automatically by law.