Translating Credit Refusals For Non-English Speaking Clients

Even today, some lending institutions aren’t entirely as prepared as they should be when it comes to serving non-English speaking clients.  In other instances, some lenders have started using forms that maybe easily translated into a number of languages when refusing credit applications.  Here’s one example:

Dear ________________________________

Your application for (type of credit is noted) has been acted upon.

Reason(s) For Adverse Action Concerning Credit:

( ) Credit application incomplete

( ) Insufficient credit references

( ) Unable to verify credit references

( ) Excessive obligations

( ) Inadequate collateral

( ) Unable to verify income

( ) Temporary or irregular employment

( ) Length of employment

( ) Unable to verify employment

( ) Insufficient income from employment

( ) Delinquent credit obligations

( ) No credit file

( ) Too short a period of residence

( ) Temporary residence

( ) Unable to verify residence

( ) We do not grant credit to applicants on the terms and conditions you request

( ) Other ________________________

Although such forms are convenient, The Marketing Analysts Translation Services Company suggests that they cannot fit all cases, they lack individuality and they do nothing to retain goodwill.  Companies using these forms must weigh the costs against the benefits.  Many firms use individualized letters instead, realizing that although they’re refusing someone credit, the gain goodwill if they can persuade the person to buy with cash until credit purchases are possible.

More so than other types of refusals, credit refusals must be handled tactfully.  According to a Houston Translation agency, credit denial limit a firm’s ability to do business and implicitly questions its business sense.  An individual denial is often taken as an attack on the applicant’s reputation.  To avoid leaving the wrong impression, you must be sure to explain the refusal.  Also you must abide by the Federal Equal Credit Opportunity Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, or marital status.  Lastly, you should never use a person’s character as the basis for denying credit; you could be sued for libel.

Whenever possible, show what the applicant can do to improve credit.  Such advice demonstrates your willingness to help lessen the impact and creates some optimism.

A well written credit refusal that will be translated by legal translation workers, should embody these guidelines:

  1. It is polite and tactful in tone.
  2. It begins with resale to show the dealer that he has made a wise choice.
  3. It explains why credit can’t be approved.
  4. It avoids hiding behind company policy.
  5. It offers a counter-proposal.
  6. It avoids negative language.
  7. It avoids a patronizing tone.
  8. It suggests buying on a cash basis.
  9. It doesn’t apologize for the refusal.

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