By Dr. Barbara O’Neill
A service member’s security clearance has been revoked due to financial problems. What can Personal Financial Management Program staff do to assist?
Start by pulling the service member’s credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com. This can also be done free of charge through FINRA if you have an educator code. Once the credit report is pulled, go through each item and assess the type(s) of outstanding debt and the delinquent amount. If a negative item is a school loan, you can get the loan current by placing the service member in a Federal Loan Repayment Program through the loan guarantor, not the servicer. If other items are negative, such as credit card or cell phone bills, the service member will have to make arrangements with the creditor(s) to start paying on those items.
Refer to Department of Defense (DoD) instruction Number 1344.09, Indebtedness of Military Personnel, for guidance. Any item found on the service member’s credit report that is not correct should be disputed with all three credit agencies: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
This post was published on the Military Families Learning Network blog on January 14, 2013.