Thursday, January 17, 2008

Wireless Contracts and Credit Ratings part. 1

Do you have a bad credit rating?

In this modern world, an undesirable credit history can make life difficult. You will find it hard to take out a loan or be approved for a credit card application if your credit rating is terrible. Now, the effect of bad credit also extends to the mobile phone industry.

The wireless contracts of many cellphone networks have certain policies when it comes to dealing with customers with bad credit. Some contracts may ask for a considerable down payment or other kinds of penalties from a customer. Wireless phone service providers may also demand a credit check to ensure that their customers maintain good credit.

Let us take a look at the contracts of some cellphone service providers to see what they say about the credit history of potential customers. Let us begin with Alltel, one of the top mobile phone carriers.

The Credits and Deposits section of Alltel's Terms and Conditions states that,
You authorize us to ask credit-reporting agencies for credit information about you. We may, in our discretion, require you to submit a deposit as security for payment of charges. An additional deposit may be required if either the amount or number of Services is increased or your credit rating changes. Simple interest will be paid on the cash deposit for the period it is held by us and will be refunded if satisfactory credit has been established or upon termination of service. We reserve the right to apply the deposit to any amount due and unpaid. We may require a guarantee of payment by an individual or entity approved by us.
As you can clearly see by this statement, having a good credit rating is a great advantage when getting a plan from Alltel. You will need to authorize them to access your credit records before you can use their services. They may also ask you for an additional deposit if your credit rating changes or if the amount of services you use increases.

Let's check out Sprint's policy on credit rating. Their online Terms and Conditions states that,
We agree to provide you Services on the condition you have and maintain satisfactory credit according to our standards and policies. You agree to provide information we may request or complete any applications we may provide you to facilitate our review. We rely on the credit information you furnish, credit bureau reports or other data available from commercial credit reference services, and other information (such as payment history with us) to determine whether to provide or continue to provide you Services. The Services we offer you can vary based on your credit history. We may at any time, based on your credit history, withdraw or change Services, or place limits or conditions on the use of our Services. You agree to provide us updated credit information upon request. We may provide your payment history and other account billing/charge information to any credit reporting agency or industry clearinghouse.
Sprint makes it clear that unless a customer maintain a rating that satisfies their standards, they will not provide services. You have also to provide them with the required credit information so that they can decide whether they will allow you to use their services.

Sprint customers will also be required to provide updated credit information when their carriers request for it. The company may also provide credit reporting agencies or industry clearinghouses with your payment history so you have to keep up with your bills.

That's it for this post. I will tackle the credit rating policies of other wireless carriers on my next post so that my current post will not bore you. I hope that this blog post has provided valuable information and that your credit history will improve or remain immaculate.

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