From 31 March 2018, lenders, both regulated and unregulated, are obliged to collect and report information in relation to credit advanced to non-consumer borrowers, including companies, limited liability partnerships, industrial and provident societies, clubs and associations. The requirement on lenders to provide personal and credit information relating to any qualifying credit application or agreement to the Central Bank of Ireland (the "Central Bank") for the purpose of populating the Central Credit Register (the "Register") has been introduced on a phased basis. The proposed timelines set by the Central Bank provide that all in-scope lenders must report data on non-consumer credit to the Register by 30 September 2018. Given these impending deadlines, this note will focus on phase two ("Phase Two") credit reporting.
The Register is a central database for credit and personal information established by the Central Bank. It was introduced under the Credit Reporting Act 2013 (the "Act")1 as part of the EU/IMF Programme of Financial Support for Ireland.
From 30 June 2017, the Register became operational and all lenders (with the exception of local authorities and moneylenders) were required to submit personal and credit information on consumer loans of €500 or more existing on 30 June 2017. A "consumer" for the purposes of the Act is defined as "a natural person acting outside his trade, business or profession".
From 31 March 2018, Phase Two commences, and lenders are required to provide credit information to the Register for business loans of €500 or more existing on 31 March 2018 and any new business loans of €500 or more taken out from 31 March 2018. The below provides a summary of the key dates relevant to Phase Two credit reporting:
What types of borrowers are covered?
A credit information subject (a "CIS") is a person who for the purpose of the Act:
- has made a credit application;
- has made a credit agreement for the provision of credit to the person; or
- is a guarantor.
It is important to note that a credit application or credit agreement will only be subject to the Act where:
- the applicant, or the person for whom the credit is provided under the credit agreement, is resident in Ireland at the time when the credit application or credit agreement is made;
- the law governing the credit agreement made pursuant to the application is Irish law; and
- the amount of credit applied for or agreed to be provided is €500 or more.
1 The Act means the Credit Reporting Act 2013 and all other applicable laws (statutory, common law or other) enactments, orders, legislation, regulations, regulatory policies, codes of practice and guidelines.
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