Checking your credit report prior to your divorce may help you get your finances in order before hitting the courtroom, but you may also want to get your credit report ready for outside parties to examine. You might be the parent responsible for paying child support, and your credit report may play a role in figuring out how much you will pay.
To understand why your credit report may become a factor in your child support, you should know the facts about how your credit report works and who can access it.
The parties who may access your report
Nerdwallet explains that the only people who generally can call up your credit report besides yourself are parties who have a legitimate business reason to examine your credit. Common examples include banks and creditors that you would owe money to. However, a government agency may also pull your report if there is a legitimate reason for the agency to have the information.
Additionally, a person or organization may go to court and secure a court order to get a look at your credit report. If your divorce becomes contested, it is possible your spouse may gain access to your report with a court decree if your finances become an issue. This might happen if your spouse claims you are hiding assets, but it may also occur if the court wants to know how much you could pay in spousal and child support.
What your report may show
Your credit report may offer a variety of information that could help a government agency figure out how much you should pay for child support. A credit report lists bank accounts and payment history, which may give the agency an idea of how much money you can spend. A credit report also lists past-due amounts. Few or no outstanding amounts on your report may indicate that you are in strong financial shape.
Also, your report may list assets that you do not know about or have forgotten, such as unclaimed income or other assets. It is important to learn about these assets since a government entity may also discover them and count them towards your child support. In addition, you may want to correct mistakes on your report so that it does not overstate your assets.