Minimizing Legal Risk and Litigation Costs through Tatua Center

5.0 Causes of CIS Disputes

Since July 2010, when the CIS mechanism was formally introduced in Kenya, we have witnessed a large number of disputes originating from consumers challenging their CRB listing status. Some of these have been high profile matters that have challenged the constitutionality of CIS while numerous others have not attracted wide publicity despite raising similarly weighty concerns affecting individual consumers.

5.1 Common causes of CIS disputes

CIS disputes commonly arise out of errors or blatant non-compliance with the Regulations.

Common pain points include;

  • Failure to agree on loan balances 

  • Fraud incidents especially arising from identity theft

  • Failure to reconcile balances where accounts are outsourced to debt collectors 

  • Re-submission of erroneous data that the bureau had deleted after resolution through the dispute process provided in law

  • Failure to ensure that the amendment notices are adopted by all bureaus (partial submission of corrections)

  • Lack of internal capacity to handle CIS disputes effectively, leading to: 

    • Failure to respond to customer correspondence​

    • Use of threatening language that hardens positions and aggravates simple complaints into disputes

    • Absence of a clear complaints escalation process

Commonly breached Regulations include failure to:

  • Issue Notice of Intention, Pre-listing, Post-listing and Adverse Action Notices. (Reg 26 )

  • Update customer information. (Reg 34 (7))

  • Abide by the dispute resolution process and particularly to respond to CRB’s. (Reg 36(8) )

  • Provide a dispute resolution officer to handle the matter. (Reg 58(7) )

 

5.2 Dispute mitigation

In order to avoid escalation of CIS complaints, all the players i.e. subscribers, CRBs, and the borrowers are advised to do the following:

  • Invest in a robust IT system that ensures a 360-degree view of the customer. 

  • Keep proper records and maintain customer documentation.

  • Respond to customer correspondence in a timely manner.

  • Continually train staff to ensure a clear understanding of the impact of inaccurate credit information on a customer profile, and capacity to resolve disputes.

  • Establish a dispute resolution process with clear escalation lines.

  • Ensure a review process prior to data submission.