Budgeting Managing Your Debt Public Records and Your Credit Report By LaToya Irby LaToya Irby Facebook Twitter LaToya Irby is a credit expert who has been covering credit and debt management for The Balance for more than a dozen years. She's been quoted in USA Today, The Chicago Tribune, and the Associated Press, and her work has been cited in several books. learn about our editorial policies Updated on June 16, 2022 Reviewed by JeFreda R. Brown Reviewed by JeFreda R. Brown Facebook Instagram Twitter JeFreda R. Brown is a financial consultant, Certified Financial Education Instructor, and researcher who has assisted thousands of clients over a more than two-decade career. She is the CEO of Xaris Financial Enterprises and a course facilitator for Cornell University. learn about our financial review board Fact checked by Lakshna Mehta In This Article View All In This Article Public Records That Appear On Credit Reports Credit Reporting Time Limit Removing Public Records From a Credit Report Photo: katleho Seisa / Getty Images A credit report public record is the section on your credit report reserved for public records. These are entries that are also on file with a local, county, state, or federal court. After a serious delinquency, your creditor may take legal action against you. If the court finds in favor of the creditor, the action will become a matter of public record, and, in some cases, the action will find its way to your credit report. Which Public Records Appear On Credit Reports? Public records that could appear on your credit report include bankruptcy, a judgment, or a tax lien. In some states, foreclosure and repossession are also public records. These entries are also the worst types of entries to appear on your credit report because they show a serious delinquency. However, since 2017, only bankruptcies can appear on your credit report. Credit Reporting Time Limit for Public Records Most bankruptcy records can remain on your credit report for seven to 10 years. Chapter 7 bankruptcy, however, can stay on your credit report for up to 10 years. A foreclosure can stay on your report for seven years. Removing Public Records From Your Credit Report If a public record is on your credit report in error, you can use the credit report dispute process to have it removed. You also have the right to dispute the error with the court that provided the entry if the credit bureau doesn't remove the error. Improving Your Credit After a Public Record While public records severely damage your credit score, especially when the item is first placed on your credit report, it's not the end of the world. As the record gets older, it hurts your credit score less. Paying all your other accounts on time and keeping your debt levels low can also minimize the impact on your credit score. Key Takeaways A credit report public record is the section on a credit report reserved for public records, which are also on file with a local, county, state, or federal court.After a serious delinquency, a creditor may take legal action against you, which may become a public record and, in some cases, appear on your credit report.Most bankruptcy records can remain on a credit report for seven to 10 years, while a foreclosure can remain on a report for seven years.If a public record is on your credit report in error, you can use the credit report dispute process to have it removed.If a credit report error is not removed by a credit bureau, you can dispute the error in court. Was this page helpful? Thanks for your feedback! Tell us why! Other Submit Sources The Balance uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. "The Equilibrium Effect of Information in Consumer Credit Markets: Public Records and Credit Redistribution," Page 3. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "A New Retrospective on the Removal of Public Records." myFICO. "What Are the Different Types of Bankruptcy and How Is Each Considered by My FICO® Score?" Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "If I Lose My Home To Foreclosure, Can I Ever Buy A Home Again? What Impact Will A Foreclosure Have On My Credit Report?" myFICO. "How to Fix Errors on Your Credit Reports and How They Occur." myFICO. "What Is Payment History?"