How long do negative items stay on a report?

Negative credit report items are automatically removed from your report. When? It depends.

When it comes to your credit health, thinking positively can go a long way. But to truly understand how your credit report affects your credit health, it’s also important to focus on the negatives. That’s because the fewer negative items on your credit report, the healthier it may appear to those evaluating it.

The first thing you should know is the national credit bureau (TransUnion, Experian or Equifax) producing a given report must remove negative items after they’ve been on your report for a certain amount of time. The questions are these: what kinds of negative items and when? The answers are not as straightforward as you may think.

Late Payments

If your report shows a late payment, that payment must be removed 7 years from the day you missed the payment.

Collections / Charged-Off Accounts

If you have an account that has been sent to collections or charged off, it will drop off of your credit report 7 years from the day you missed your first payment, not 7 years from the day the account was sent to collections or charged off.

Bankruptcies

For bankruptcies, the mention of the bankruptcy will generally remain in your credit report for up to 10 years from the date you filed. A completed or dismissed Chapter 13 bankruptcy remains on your file for up to 7 years from the date filed.

Regardless of which type of bankruptcy you file, the actual accounts included in a bankruptcy remain on your file for up to 7 years from the date of closing / last activity.

Inquiries

Though inquiries generally don’t have too much of a negative impact on your credit health, they can be seen as a drag on your creditworthiness if your report lists too many of them in too short of a time frame. Inquiries usually fall off your credit report 2 years after the date they were made.

Public Records, Generally

Civil judgments, foreclosures, forcible detainers, garnishments and attachments generally remain on your report 7 years from the date those actions are filed in a legal proceeding.

Public Records: Tax Liens

Tax liens are a little trickier. Paid tax liens will stay on your report for up to 7 years from the date it’s paid off. Unpaid tax liens, on the other hand, remain on file for as long as they remain unpaid.

To sum up, most negative items remain on your report for up to 7 years. Bankruptcies can remain on your report for up to 10 years and inquiries drop off your report after 2 years. Though the best course of action is to avoid having negative items on your report by paying your bills on time and avoiding too many credit applications, it’s a good idea to know what the rules are. That way, if you have some negative credit report items, you’ll know what to expect and what you can do to work toward healthier credit.

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This article was originally published on truecredit.com.

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Be OK Financially: Living Well After Divorce

Originally posted by Sandra Hughes on silvernest.com Apr 13, 2017 8:58:10 AM

Going through divorce is challenging on so many levels: mentally, emotionally and financially. Having a plan and support systems in place is critical in getting through each of these challenges. When you are dealing specifically with the financial realities of divorce, you may be wondering, “Will I be ok financially? Will I be able to live well after the divorce?” The answer to both of those questions can be yes—with thoughtful planning on your part.

The reality of divorce is that at least one of the parties will have a standard of living less than the marital standard of living, or what you were used to. From a completely practical standpoint, you may have never been involved in the financial planning, tax or estate planning aspects of your marriage. It will be useful to have sound advice to guide you through these conversations, as you get used to dealing with even more “new” things.

Divorce has a decidedly “business perspective” that may feel like foreign territory. And thinking about it just that way can take some of the emotion out of the break-up and focus you on the details of the next stage of your life. Following are three key suggestions to give you the support and comfort you need:

1) Put the right “business” team in place.

Ideally the team would consist of your divorce attorney, financial adviser, accountant, and estate planning attorney. If you can’t have all of these, a good attorney or mediator and a financial adviser is a good starting point. The best way to find all of these people is by referral. Talk to people that you know who have been through a divorce. Find out who they used and whether they would recommend that person, then interview the person before you start working with him/her to see if you get along well. It is very important for you to respect your adviser as well as having him/her respect you. A financial adviser will make sure you are clear about what you have now, and also that you budget and plan wisely for the income and assets you’ll have when the divorce is finalized. Finally, a good estate planning attorney is critical because there are all sorts of the issues surrounding your estate and beneficiaries once you are no longer partnered.

2) Create a budget immediately.

In order to get a sense of what you have and what you will need, do a current budget, as well as a projected post-divorce budget. If you have the ability to work with a certified financial planner or even a certified divorce financial planner, that is really beneficial. In any event, understanding what you have to work with and creating a current budget, highlighting your income and expenses, and also listing your assets and debts is a great starting point. Projecting your post-divorce budget is key as well. Figure out what financial information you have and what you need to find. Most important, you need to think about what you will need to live on, where you are going to live, and what you need to keep in mind regarding children, if you have them. Do a preliminary inventory of your assets so you have an idea what you will have when you and your spouse eventually divide them up.

3) Formulate your plan.

Know what you have to work with now helps you formulate a realistic plan for what you want to have at the end of the divorce negotiations. Once you have a sense of that, then the next step is figuring out what you will need to do to achieve that end. Setting realistic goals, and having your team in place goes a long way to creating a focused plan.

Having a structure, a plan and support will alleviate some of the stress and worry that is center of a divorce. That is what I want for each of you – the peace of mind that comes with knowing you will be financially ok, and the knowledge that you can live well after your divorce.

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Are Background Checks Necessary For Businesses?

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Background checks are becoming more common, with businesses using them now as a part of the final stage of their hiring process, but are they necessary, why do businesses conduct them and do you have to ask permission?

What is a background check?

A background check is the process of finding and reviewing a person’s criminal history, their recruitment history and occasionally their commercial history and financial records. The details of these checks can vary from country to country and state to state and so it’s important to reference the laws regarding background checks where you live. The service of conducting a background check is typically outsourced to a company such as Checkr who will find the person’s information and raise any red flags.

Why do businesses conduct background checks? 

Businesses may conduct a background check for many different reasons. Some roles especially those within government or finance may require them to do so. Other employers may opt to do one as a safeguarding measure and to help them gauge the character of a person and their suitability for a role. 

It has been estimated that up to 40% of people lie on their resume and a background check can help employers to find out if an applicant has made false claims regarding their employment or education history. Even the process of ringing up a persons references could be classed as a form of background check and is just a way for a potential employer to gauge the fit of a prospective employee and to check that they have not been dishonest in order to be considered for the role. 

A background check can also highlight any issues that may make someone unsuitable for their role for example it could highlight driving offences which could make a person unsuitable for a role as a delivery driver. Background checks can also highlight any criminal records and any time spent in jail, and although a person should not be disregarded for their criminal history alone this should be taken into consideration when trying to maintain a safe working environment. For example, a candidate with a violent history may not be suitable for a high stress working environment as they may pose a risk to other members of staff. Background checks are also often performed for roles in which the individual is responsible for money as a means of additional security and protection against theft. 

Do employers have to ask the candidates permission?

Yes, as a potential employer you must ask and receive written permission from a candidate in order to conduct a background check, otherwise this could be a breach of a person’s privacy. An employer is also required to offer a copy of the finished report should you wish to query anything stated within it. 

The laws around background checks and what can and cannot be done change from place to place, so be sure to read up on the laws for your location if you wish to conduct one or believe one is going to be conducted on you. 

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Critical Areas To Think About Before Launching Your Business

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It may seem like there are a million and one things to do when you are trying to start a business, and you’re partially right. However, you needn’t try to tackle every task simultaneously. There are, of course, some areas that are more critical to consider than others from the offset. With your concept in hand, it’s recommended that you take time initially to think about the structure of your business. Also, to take a look at your intellectual property rights. And last but not least, to labor over market research to ascertain whether there is a gap in the industry you are hoping to compete in.

Structure Of The Business 

Assessing the structure of your business may require help and guidance from a legal expert. Are you the fully-fledged CEO of your new company, or are there other business partners that have contributed to the business concept to? Also, what will be each of your roles in the company? A specific purpose for each person ensures you all have direction and maximize your individual strengths. Perhaps, if you are headstrong and want to take control of the majority of the business process, and your accomplice is happy for you to do that, they may prefer the role as a sleeping partner – someone has little to no input in the business decision making. Creating your business structure now shall avoid any issues in the future with management, essential decisions, and whether someone you are in business with wants to sell their part in the future.

Intellectual Property Rights

In every turn you take in business, back-up and protection should be at the top of your priority list. From business insurance to back-up servers for your data, to security measures for your company premises, protection of your company is a never-ending necessity. Initially, your protective efforts should be cast upon souring advice and guidance from ip consulting firms on the issue of intellectual property rights. This subject covers patents, trademarks, and copyrights. You want to establish whether your idea is original and if so, you want to protect it from being snapped up by another entrepreneur.

Gap In The Market

You can’t escape the necessity of research when you are starting a new business. In fact, it’s vital throughout the process of your business to continue to research to ensure your product or service adapts to the changing market. Initially, however, you want to gather enough information that indicates to you a gap in the market is present. Seeking an opportunity within the industry you are aiming to enter is essential, it’s a step you can’t afford to skip. It means your business has the potential to attract buyers, grow, and stand in good stead against its competitors. While searching for your gap, you shall want to research existing competitors, buying behavior within the market and your target market. 

The critical areas mentioned throughout this post are something all-new startups should consider. In doing so, they can prevent issues occurring during the business’s journey. For instance, stunting the company’s growth due to an unclear business structure. And perhaps lack of direction of who is responsible for what. Other issues include that concerning intellectual property, such as another competitor using your idea as their own.

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What is a Certificate of Analysis (COA) (and How to Read)

in CBD NEWS

What is a certificate of analysis coa

CBD is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get unless you do a little reading. With CBD oil, it should be as easy as checking the box, but there’s an unfortunate problem of mislabeled products. Protect yourself from fake or low-quality products by doing your due diligence —always check the Certificate of Analysis. If there isn’t one, steer clear. 

What is a Certificate of Analysis (COA)? 

A Certificate of Analysis, or COA, is a document from an accredited laboratory that shows the quantity of various cannabinoids in a product. 

Manufacturers should send every batch of every product they make to a lab for testing, to protect their customers and prove that their products have as much CBD as they advertise. 

Always check the COA before using a CBD product 

COAs aren’t always easy to get your hands on before buying a product. You may need to reach out to the company to request it. 

However, once you receive your product, there should be a QR code on the label that you can scan and be taken to a webpage with the product’s COA. Most iPhones can scan QR codes through the regular camera, just open the camera app and point it at the QR code (don’t take a picture, just hover over the QR code) and a notification should pop up with a web address. For Android or older iPhones, simply go to the app store and search for a “QR code scanner”. There are free options to download.

cbd qr code coa

Not all states require QR codes on CBD products, but it has become a common practice anyway as reputable companies want this information to be readily available to all of their customers. 

If you can’t get a COA from the manufacturer’s website, customer service, or the product label, that’s not good. A quality CBD company will always get their products lab tested. After all, a COA is as much for the customer as it is for the company to double-check the quality of their work for quality assurance purposes. 

🚩 4 red flags to watch out for in a Certificate of Analysis

Once you get a Certificate of Analysis, inspect it thoroughly. Here are a few things to watch out for. 

1. Too much THC

To be considered hemp oil, by law, it cannot contain above 0.3% THC. If it contains more, then it’s considered marijuana and may not be legal in your state. 

Also, if your product is advertised as containing no THC, then reading the COA is a good way to verify that claim. 

2. Less CBD than advertised

This one is obvious, but for good measure, we’re mentioning it. It’s very important to make sure the Certificate of Analysis reflects the advertised CBD content on your product’s label. 

3. Missing cannabinoids

If a CBD product is marketed as full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or PCR, that means it contains a variety of cannabinoids. The COA should show the product contains at least small amounts of CBDa, CBG, CBC, CBN, and/or other cannabinoids, in addition to CBD. 

4. Tested in-house

When buying a car from a stranger, you don’t take their word for the condition they claim the car is in. You check it out or bring someone with you that knows what to look for. 

That thought process is similar when it comes to testing CBD products. If the Certificate of Analysis came from the company themselves, meaning they tested it in-house, they might be telling the truth —but it’s not as reassuring as an unbiased professional performing the test. 

Unless you really trust a company, it’s a good idea to make sure their COAs come from an accredited third-party lab. If they don’t, ask if they can provide one as they may have both available. 

How to read a COA lab test 

COAs are not always easy to read, and there are many different formats. 

Typically, you’re going to see COAs that show the results in one of the following three ways: 

  • Milligrams (mg) of CBD in the full product 
  • Milligrams (mg) of CBD per gram (g) 
  • Milligrams (mg) of CBD per milliliter (ml) 

Note that we are using CBD as an example, but the same goes for all other cannabinoids in the COA. 

That first type of result means you don’t need to do any work or calculations, as it already shows you the total amounts of each cannabinoid in the product. However, for the others, you will need to know one thing about the product in order to make your calculations. 

Before explaining those two test result formats, we should refresh our memory on units of measurements. A milliliter (ml) is a measurement of volume. So even though most liquid CBD products will show the size in ounces (oz), you can convert that. 1oz will always equal 30ml. However, grams (g) is a weight. Two 30ml tinctures will not weigh the same in grams, as the weight is affected by each ingredient in the product’s unique formulation.

MG per G 

If the results show the amount of cannabinoids per gram, then you need to know the total weight of the product in grams. The weight does not include the packaging, just the product itself. Most products do not show their weight in grams on the label, so you may need to ask or check if the COA contains that information. 

For example, a product weighing 25 grams with an advertised 300mg of CBD should have 12mg of CBD per gram. 

MG per ML 

If the results show the amount of cannabinoids per milliliter, then it’s a little easier. However, this type of measurement only (easily) works for liquids. Simply take the total milliliters of the product and multiply it by the amount of CBD per milliliter. 

Liquid tinctures will always tell you their size, such as 1oz (30ml) or 2oz (60ml). 

So, for example, a 1oz (30ml) tincture with an advertised 300mg CBD should contain 10mg of CBD per milliliter. 

Other types of lab tests 

In addition to the standard cannabinoid profile, it’s also common to find full-panel lab tests. These show the cannabinoid profile and terpene analysis, as well as checking for any molds, pests, or heavy metals that could be harmful over certain levels. 

Checking COAs on Made by Hemp 

At Made by Hemp, we make sure COAs are not only easy to access, but they’re also easy to read. Go to any product listing in our CBD store and click the “lab test results” link below the product title to review the results in PDF format. 

Our test results are all from a third-party lab. However, our results are in milligrams of CBD per gram so, to assist with reading our COAs, the weight in grams of the product is included in the COA and the calculations are performed to immediately show you the total CBD in the product. 

As a bonus, the percentage of each cannabinoid is included in the results, which is especially helpful to see that it contains 0.3% or less THC per the legal limit. 

Contributed Post. Article originally posted on https://madebyhemp.com/

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What To Do If You Need To Get A Police Accident Report

Photo by Matt Popovich on Unsplash

In the unlikely situation that you need to file a police report, you need to be sure you are as prepared as you can be. Although it can be an incredibly unpleasant situation, being prepared will help you stay calm and ensure you go through the process as quickly as you possibly can. 

With that in mind, here is a guide on what to do if you need to get a police accident report: 

  • Make Sure You Contact The Police Straight Away

The first thing you need to do if you need to get a police report is to contact the police right away. If you don’t, you will be asked why you didn’t do this when you’re attending your interview at the station as it can be seen as a way of tampering with evidence. During your phone call, you need to ensure you’re giving as many details as you can about the situation you are in. Although it may be difficult, try not to panic at this stage. 

For guidance when it comes to calling the police, you can visit this site here. 

  • Take Photos If Possible

If the situation you’re in has physical evidence, you need to ensure you’re taking as many pictures as you possibly can. Not only will it help when they’re compiling your report, but it may help when it comes to their investigation following the event. 

  • Ensure You’re Writing Down As Many Details As You Can About The Accident

Although it may not be the first thing on your mind after the incident has happened, you need to ensure you’re writing down as many details as you can. Talking to the police can be incredibly intimidating and if you’re feeling nervous, you may find that you forget key details. The best way to ensure this doesn’t happen is to write down as much as you can about the incident, handing those details over to the office as soon as you arrive at the station. For details about what you should be included, you can visit this site about how to get a accident report here. 

  • Take Someone With You For Support

If you’re feeling nervous about the whole situation, you may want to consider taking someone with you to offer support. Even if they were not there when the accident occurred, they will be allowed to join you throughout the interview process

The most important thing to remember is that the officers are there to help and they may come across as stern as they’re just trying to do their jobs. 

  • Give Them As Much Detail As You Possibly Can

Finally, you need to ensure you’re giving the officers as much detail as you possibly can. Give them any notes you have taken and any photographs you have, helping them build the best case they possibly can. Everything you give them will be used in the police report, meaning the more information they have the better. 

Are you worried about giving a police report? What can you do to help the process go as smoothly as possible? Let me know in the comments section below. 

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How To Ensure Your Employees Are Safe At Work

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If you run a business where you hire other people then one of the most important thing to realise  is that you’re responsible for their health and safety whilst they are under your supervision at work.

However this can be quite overwhelming for employers to figure out what kind of rules and regulations they should be following in terms of keeping their employees safe, so in this post we’re going to share with you some of our top tips for how to ensure your employees are safe at work.

Keep things comfortable:

Most people don’t automatically think that comfort and safety go together, but it’s important to understand that for example if your employees have to work outdoors, for example on a building site and they’re working during winter or when conditions are particularly harsh, or even if they’re working in the middle of summer then the temperatures and the environment in which they are working depending on what they have to wear can make them less or more comfortable, so for example if it’s very cold outside then you may want to consider renting a generator so that you can perhaps keep things a bit warmer for them as this will enable them to not focus so much on being cold, but be able to focus entirely on their work which will in turn impact their safety.

Analyze the working environment:

Every working environment is going to be different, so for example you may have an office where employees work for you and their safety is just as important as someone who works on a building site, although the things that you need to have in place to ensure their safety are going to be different, so for example, you could be responsible for ensuring that all computer screens are at the optimum height, at the right brightness, and that all desks and chairs are suitable for people so that they don’t suffer any kinds of headaches or repetitive strain injury.

Have regulations in place:

All employers are required to have health and safety regulations in place that they have to follow so it’s important that you have these and that you make sure that everyone is on board, understands them and is following them, so you should have them for example, printed out in common areas and also they should be part of the on boarding process when you hire new people.

Perform regular reviews:

Keeping up-to-date with your health and safety regulations is key as is making sure that your employees also feel safe and protected when at work, so performing things like regular reviews, checking things over, checking equipment and making sure that everything is functioning as it should be and also asking people how they feel working there.

We hope that this post has been helpful in helping you to identify some of the things that you can do to make your workplace a bit safer for the people who work for you, and also to help you understand what kind of things that you might need to have in place and what things that you don’t have to really think about as well as tips for ensuring that health and safety can be an ongoing thing but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

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