Let’s get this straight – your credit report will not tell you if you had PPI. It simply doesn’t contain that piece of information. But it can help you know where to check if you did – given certain conditions.
Your credit report goes back six years, so any lender you’ve had a credit account with in that time – eg, a loan, a credit card or car finance – should be on there. If you took out the agreement longer ago than that, it might still be on your report – though only if the account was still technically open at some point within the last six years.
When an account closes depends on the lender and product. A fixed-term loan would close when the final payment is made, for instance. A credit card however would remain open until you close it.
So in short, use your credit file to find out which lenders you may have had PPI with, but its limited history means you shouldn’t rely on it alone. See the Reclaim PPI for free guide for full tips and template letters.