Japan: Know if you have a dirty name and how to avoid the "blacklist"

Common issues like delays in paying the mobile phones accounts can negatively affect the user

The procedures to negatively affect someone in Japan are not very different from the procedures in other countries. In Japan, there are three main credit institutions that keep the data of individuals who have a credit card, have applied for a bank loan or have made a loan.

When bills accumulated without payment, negative information is recorded in these institutions. To the letter, this process is called accidental information (Jiko Jouhou / 事故 情報) that are inserted between the trusted information (Shinyou Jouhou / 信用 情報) of the user.

The blacklist is like a deep well, in which you may fall by accident or slip, but you will not get out of there so easily. Unlike in other countries, where it is possible to clear the name in a few days after the settlement of the debt, the credit information companies in Japan do not facilitate the life of the indebted so much.

In most cases, you can seek a lawyer, negotiate the debt and pay it in a few months or years. However, even after the full settlement of the amounts, the negative information remains recorded for at least five years. That is, if you pay back the payment in three years, you will still have the dirty name for another two years.

Only in the case of financial loans is there the possibility of clearing the name earlier. If you get it right you can have the negative information taken from your record after one year from the end of the payment. However, if the debt is credit card, forget that because your name will remain dirty in the next five years or more, depending on the case.

There is no unified system for the user to check their own credit information. There are three institutions that should be consulted by those who want to know if it is or it is not with a dirty name. The JBA (Japan Banking Association), the CIC (Credit Information Center) and the JICC (Japan Credit Information Reference Center) keep the detailed data of who has debts in all kinds of services.

Each body allows the user to query their information, but the process is not easy. It is necessary to make a registration, prove that you will access the information itself and still pay a fee in the range of ¥1 thousand. Procedures vary by institution and in most cases you can follow all steps online.

However, it is possible to have an idea of the situation without having to verify any records. If you have the dirty name, you will be unable to borrow, issue a new credit card or make any type of financing. If any banking procedure is was denied then you can assume that your name is dirty, especially if you know you have failed to pay any kind of services.

ATTENTION to mobile phones
If you barely use a credit card and have not made any loans or financing, it is common to think that there is little chance of going blacklisted. However, minor oversights may not be forgiven and having the dirty name in Japan is fast to happen than many people imagine.

If you barely use a credit card and have not made any loans or financing, it is common to think that there is little chance of going blacklisted. However, minor oversights may not be forgiven and having the dirty name in Japan is fast to happen than many people imagine.

In 2010, the number of mobile phone users who ended up negated increases from 210,000 to 1.4 million. The reason? Delay in payment of the installments of the unit phone. The possibility of paying the mobile phone in monthly payment have attracted thousands of people to this type of purchase, but also facilitated the indebtedness.

For those who do not want or can not pay the smartphone in cash, the operators close the contract deal of the device and give  the smartphone in the hands of the customer at low prices. However, the value cost of the smartphone is billed monthly, along with the costs related to the chosen plan. By delaying payment for three months, the customer is placed to the negative list and no agency informs about this.

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