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VERIFY: Unemployment and your credit score

A viewer asked us to verify whether unemployment from COVID-19 can impact your credit score.
Credit: Glegorly
Unemployment application (Getty/Glegorly)

There's all sorts of confusion out there about the pandemic. The Verify Team is here to bring your questions to the vetted experts to get you the truth.

A viewer asked us to verify whether unemployment from COVID-19 can impact your credit score.

Our sources here are Experian, one of the three major credit bureaus, and Credit Karma.

They say, no, losing your job by itself won't ding your credit score.

"Being unemployed does not impact your credit score directly, whether you are currently employed or not is not part of a credit report," said Rod Griffin, Senior Director of Consumer Education and Advocacy at Experian.

A credit report doesn't show if you've applied for unemployment. Nor does it show your employment history. All it shows is who your employer was when you applied for new credit.

"If you get a car loan you might have that car loan for on average and 5 to 7 years, if you change jobs during that time and that's the only new credit you apply for, we wouldn't have that new employer reported to us, so its not updated with us, its only shared when you apply for a new account," Griffin said.

Here's the catch: Losing your job can indirectly impact your credit score.

If you're skipping payments on credit cards or loans or if taking on more debt, your credit score could take a hit.