What Does “Derogatory” Mean on Credit Reports?

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The word “derogatory”, in reference to credit health, refers to negative information on a credit report. This notation on a credit report may impact the ability to get new credit or increased credit because it might indicate a higher credit risk to lenders. The phrase “key derogatory” indicates information that has a more severe negative impact on credit. 1

Common reasons for a derogatory credit remark include collection accounts, bankruptcy, foreclosure, tax liens and civil judgments. 2

Negative credit information and derogatory remarks on credit reports may prevent being approved for credit, or result in higher rates or less favorable borrowing terms. It is possible for negative information to stay on credit reports for seven years or longer in some cases. 1

How is derogatory different from delinquency?

One key difference between the two terms would be the amount of time that negative information has been reported on a credit report. Derogatory usually refers to negative information that’s been on credit reports for more than 180 days, while delinquent refers to negative account information of less than 180 days. 2

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