Minimising the impact of COVID-19 payment freezes on business credit files
Equifax, in conjunction with other business credit reference agencies, has developed lender
guidelines to minimise any adverse effects of emergency payment freezes on UK business credit
files. This is part of the company’s ongoing collaboration with peers, regulators, government,
credit providers and trade associations to support both consumers and businesses impacted by
As the government continues to evolve its package of COVID-19 business support measures,
lenders have an important role to play in assisting any business struggling to make their regular
repayments. Lenders can offer businesses an emergency payment freeze, with each case
assessed on the circumstances of the individual business.
The guidelines developed by Equifax and the other business credit reference agencies are
designed to minimise the impact of any emergency payment freeze on a business’s credit file,
while maintaining the integrity of credit data. The principles echo the guidelines already in place
for UK consumer credit files.
Patricio Remon, President of Europe at Equifax, said: “The financial industry has an essential
role to play in supporting businesses through the COVID-19 crisis. There is a major focus on
providing new finance to businesses, but it’s also important that sensible measures are in place
for those struggling to repay existing debt. Managing cash flow is of the utmost importance to
UK businesses right now. We want to help businesses minimise worries about the impact on
their credit files, and access to credit in the future, from being on an emergency payment freeze.
“We are working closely with all relevant parts of the financial industry to manage payment
freezes for business and consumers appropriately, and to support lenders to develop the right
measures for when these freezes come to an end.”
It is important that borrowers do not cancel debt repayments without first consulting with their
lender to identify the options available to them.
Equifax Inc., “Equifax” is a global information solutions company that uses unique data,
innovative analytics, technology and industry expertise to power organisations and individuals around the world by transforming knowledge into insights that help make more informed business and personal decisions.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., Equifax operates or has investments in 24 countries in North
America, Central and South America, Europe and the Asia Pacific region. It is a member of Standard & Poor (S&P) 500® Index, and its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. Equifax employs approximately 11,000 employees worldwide.
Equifax Ltd is one of the Equifax group companies based in the UK. Equifax Ltd is authorised and
regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.