How Long Things Can Stay on Your Credit Report

how long does things stay on your credit

By Brandon Cornett | © 2014, all rights reserved | Duplication prohibited

Summary: Do you have questions about how long certain items can stay on your credit report? If so, you've come to the right place. Below, you'll find a comprehensive list of negative items and how long they are permitted to stay on your reports.

The Purpose of This List

How long do negative items stay on my credit report? This seems to be one of the most common questions among consumers these days. It's also a topic that brings a lot of people to our website every day. For example, in January 2009 we published an article to explain how long a foreclosure can stay on your credit report. That page is now one of the top ten pages on our site, in terms of traffic (out of more than 2,000 articles).

According to the author, Brandon Cornett: "When I was researching that article, I realized that people

are very concerned about negative information on their credit reports. My piece focused on foreclosures, but that's one of many negative items. People want to know how long all of these items can stay on their credit reports -- charge offs, bankruptcy, civil judgments, you name it."

How Long a Negative Item Can Stay on Your Report

Let's start off with the easy part, the 7-to-10 rule. After that, we will discuss all of the negative items one at a time. Here's the general rule. Aside from your personal information, most items on your credit report have an "expiration date." This is the maximum period of time they can stay on your credit reports, according to federal law .

Most things have a time limit of either seven or ten years. That's the easy part. So now the question is: Which items come off after seven years, and which ones can stay for ten? Here's an easy way to remember:


Category: Credit

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