FICO® Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling (C&FC)

FICO® Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling (C&FC) Program

FICO® Score Open Access for Credit and Financial Counseling (C&FC) is a valuable program that enables credit and financial counseling providers in the U.S. to share FICO® Scores already purchased - for the purpose of providing financial counseling and/or financial educational services - with their customers with no additional score fees or program fees.

Since 2015, qualified CBA members have been able to share FICO® Scores with their clients in order to enhance the credit coaching process and credit building outcomes.

Program Perks

  • Disclosure of previously purchased FICO® Scores and the top two key factors that impact the score using the FICO® Score Summary Report Generator
  • Score generator available in English and Spanish
  • The only authorized way to share the FICO® Score with customers
  • No additional score or program fees from FICO
  • Access to FICO’s educational materials

Why use FICO® Score Open Access for Credit and Financial Counseling?

There are many reasons that sharing FICO® Score with your clients can enrich your credit building program. Some key benefits include: 
  • FICO® Scores are powerful financial capability tools that can help to ensure that credit education and coaching programs resonate and are relevant to the unique situations of each individual client.
  • Sharing FICO® Scores with clients can help them stay accountable to their credit building goal and understand how financial decisions can affect their progress.
  • Viewing FICO® Score progress with your client can help to leverage successes by learning and accessing new products and services.
  • FICO® Scores are used in over 90% of lending decisions in the U.S. By sharing a FICO® Score, you are helping consumers understand how they are viewed by lenders.

Get started with FICO® Score Open Access for Credit and Financial Counseling!

Fast and easy to use, the program increases consumer understanding of FICO® Score and their importance in everyday financial decisions and may be the tool necessary to engage long-term retention. 
  1. Determine eligibility
  2. Sign the Program License Agreement and return with application* to FICO
  3. Receive access and download program materials
  4. Inform staff and counselors/coaches of the program
  5. Start sharing FICO® Scores

*Ready to sign up? On the Program Sign-Up Application and Requirements Questionnaire, add “Credit Builders Alliance” as an Affiliation (Q6). CBA and FICO work closely to support CBA Members with the program.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can participate in FICO® Score Open Access for Credit and Financial Counseling?

Qualified non-profit organizations that are already purchasing FICO® Scores from one of the three big credit bureaus or, in some cases, credit data resellers for the purposes of financial counseling. All CBA Access members may be eligible for the program. Learn more about the specific criteria here.

If eligible, how long does it take to get approved for the program?

The typical turnaround is two weeks or less. In order to ensure the smoothest process, be sure to provide all documentation requested to FICO.

What are the program requirements?

On a quarterly basis, FICO® Score Open Access for C&FC users will be asked to disclose via email the quantity of FICO® Scores disclosed during the prior quarter and qualitative feedback about program impact from an organization and/or customer perspective.

Why can I not share the credit report with the client/customer?

The ability to share the credit report with your client/customer is a bureau decision. This program does not alter that status. Refer to your agreement with the bureaus to determine this eligibility. View this CBA Tipsheet on the Do's and Don'ts of Sharing Credit Report Data for more details.

How does this program change things if we already share the FICO® Scores with your customers?

Some underwriting reports may allow you the access to share the credit report and score, but that is agreement dependent. Prior to this program, there was no authorized way for credit and financial counselors to share the FICO® Score with their customers. This program does not alter any prior agreements.

How do I purchase the FICO® Score?

This program does not provide a new way to pull FICO® Scores. Contact the CBA Membership Team to learn about CBA Access, which provides an avenue for purchasing FICO® Scores through the various credit bureaus at a lower cost.

How do I share the FICO® Score through the FICO® Score Open Access for C&FC with the client?

FICO® Scores can only be shared using the FICO® Score Generator tool. You can share this tool in person during a coaching/counseling session, via encrypted email in some cases, as long as you are using a mainstream email server (such as Apple Mail, Microsoft Outlook or Mozilla Thunderbird that provide native support for S/MIME secure email), by printing and mailing it to the client, or over the phone if you follow the authentication guidelines set forth by the by the bureau that provided the score to your organization.

Additional Questions?

 Contact CBA 

 Contact FICO 

Join CBA's FICO Group Forum

Already a member? Join CBA’s Group Forum, a private group in the FICO® Score Open Access for C&FC online community. Monitored by CBA staff and FICO experts this forum is a place to get your questions answered.

 Request access to this group 

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