The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) published a final rule for when a veteran's debt, like a medical debt, can be reported to the credit reporting agencies.
Under the new rule, the VA will only report debts to credit reporting agencies under all of the following circumstances:
- The debt is classified as currently not collectible. A debt is considered "not collectible" if the VA has exhausted available collection efforts, including, as appropriate, referrals for administrative offset and enforced collection.
- The debt balance is over $25.00 (or a higher amount as the VA may, from time to time, decide).
- The debt is not owed by an individual that the VA determined to be catastrophically disabled or that has reported to VA a gross household income below the applicable geographically adjusted income limits that would entitle a VA beneficiary to cost-free health care, medications, or beneficiary travel. (38 C.F.R. § 1.916).
The VA said that this new reporting threshold will result in a 99% reduction in reported debt.
However, the VA will continue to report debts to the bureaus in cases of fraud, misrepresentation, or bad faith.
Effective date: March 4, 2022