What is credit discrimination?

Discrimination can happen any time and for just about any reason. In Illinois and across the country, it is not uncommon for people to be denied credit based on their race, age, sex or other factors. This is known as credit discrimination. It is harmful not only because it is blatantly offensive and perpetuates illegal activity, but it can also affect someone’s financial wellbeing.

Under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, as the Federal Trade Commission points out, no one can deny you credit based on any of the following: 

  •        Sex
  •        Race or national origin
  •        Color
  •        Marital status
  •        Religion
  •        Age

Also importantly, the law protects someone from giving you credit based on whether or not you receive public assistance.

Do not be alarmed if a creditor asks you for any of this information. It is legal for an agency to collect that data in some situations, but, as the FTC states, it cannot make a decision about your credit based on these factors. Instead, it should only take into account factors like your debts, expenses and income.

If you do believe that you have been discriminated against, the FTC encourages you to contact the Illinois Attorney General. The AG can determine whether or not the creditor violated any laws. You can also report the issue to a government agency. The FTC states that the agency that denied you credit is responsible for giving you the contact information for the organization you can contact to with your complaint. When illegal activity does occur, it is possible to sue the creditor and recover certain damages.

While this information may be useful, it should not be taken as legal advice.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Need Help With A Specific Issue?