Why is a Credit Check needed?

A credit check is carried out to establish the credit worthiness of a business or an individual. The main body of the report refers to the credit history of the subject. It summarizes how credit has been managed and may include payment history. Bank accounts that have not been managed properly may also be flagged. In addition, other irregularities will be reported, such as bankruptcy or compulsory winding up orders and some civil proceedings.

Whether you are a lawyer or an investor needing to better know your client or customer (KYC), a credit check can help provide peace of mind.  Equally, if you are a business owner considering a joint venture, taking on new suppliers, vendors or large customers, a credit check is advisable.  In the long run, if your customers do not pay their bills,  your cash flow and ultimately credit rating may be affected.

Basic Credit Check

In essence, there are two types of credit check. You can get a credit check on an individual (usually with a signed release letter) or on a company. 

Companies can also register with the main credit agencies.  This makes them more open with their credit history (viewed by potential investors as a positive thing), and if they have not registered, there may be no report available in certain countries but not Hong Kong.  Potential investors could view this negatively.

We can get both for many countries through partner credit agencies.

Basic and Enhanced Credit Check Comparison

However, to better meet the requirements of numerous clients, we developed an Enhanced Credit Report on companies/ businesses. This is not only more comprehensive but provides good value for money.  While a basic credit check is often sufficient, it may not be suitable for compliance purposes or does not necessarily provide the full picture of the subject.

Our Enhanced Credit Report is based on a regular credit check but supplemented with additional research, and occasionally investigations. This gives the client a more customized report in line with requirements.   

CREDIT SCORE: Typically, with a basic business credit report, a company is rated with a score from 0 – 100.  Anything above 70 is good and but below 30 is an indicator that the company may be failing or filing for bankruptcy.

FINANCIAL ISSUES: The basic check can reveal details of bankruptcies, judgments, business liens and other signs of financial trouble.  

VERIFYING BASIC CHECK: Through complementary research, as part of an Enhanced Company Check, we are able to cross-check and verify much of this information.  This is important especially if a company has not reported findings accurately to the appropriate authorities. 

SUPPLEMENTING BASIC CHECK: We can also provide additional information. For companies, this might include more details of directors, shareholders and addresses.  In effect, our Enhanced Credit Reports provide a system of checks and balances with the added benefit of identifying information that credit reporting agencies omit.

Can you get an Enhanced Credit Report for an individual?

No, we do not provide enhanced credit reports on individuals.  However, clients sometimes ask us to conduct individual background screening that includes a credit report—particularly as part of the pre-employment process.   Most credit reporting agencies require a signed release letter from the subject of the check although, it should be noted, that individuals can get checks on themselves.

Rating methods depend on the agency involved but as with company checks, the higher the score the better.  Aside from an individual’s loan and repayment history, accounts in joint names may also be checked.

Worldwide Turn-Around-Time (TAT)

Through our work with international credit agencies we can cover much of Europe (including Italy, France, Spain, and the UK), the Americas and, of course, SE Asia. An Enhanced Credit Report takes approximately 14 working days with a basic check being around 10.

We can give you a quicker TAT but the service is more expensive.

Reasons for Failing a Credit Check

Did you know question

In Canada, it is possible to fail a Credit Check if you have not bothered to pay library fines or parking tickets and if you owe money to the tax man!