Collections on a Credit Bureau

A collection on a credit bureau can be very hurtful to ones credit score. It could be the difference between getting a car loan for good credit and a car loan for bad credit . Collections will go on a credit bureau when an outstanding bill is not paid and the company feels they have no option but to hire a collection company to do the collecting on a bad debt. I have seen in many cases that a person can claim bankruptcy and have outstanding debts included and paid through bankruptcy, but still show up on their credit reports as a collection, well after the bankruptcy was discharged. Here’s how is works: When you claim bankruptcy, and include a debt in your bankruptcy, fulfill the bankruptcy and get discharged, all debts are to be considered paid. In my opinion, it would wrong to have one of those debts still show up as a collection. If this were to happen I would call Equifax and open up a dispute. To do this you will need to have records that the specific debt was paid in bankruptcy.I would also call the collection company responsible for the collection and have them remove it from the bureau. A lot of collection companies will tell you that they can only “put on” a collection, and cant “remove” a collection. Listen folks, this is not true, in my opinion. If a company put a collection on your bureau by mistake then they can certainly make the recommendation to both credit bureaus(Transunion and Equifax), to remove it as well. Please make sure when you are dealing with a collection agency to be polite and to the point. We always want to be logical when dealing with businesses. Keep in mind that they are humans as well, and can make mistakes. When asking them to remove the collection from your bureau you will want to ask them to “manually” and “electronically” delete from the bureau. “Manually” deleting will be when they send a letter(which you want a copy of), and “electronically” is when they do it through their system that feeds to the credit bureaus. You will want to document this and have all records. This all seems like a lot of work for something that wasn’t your fault, but keep in mind that this is your credit that we are dealing with. For me, I have gone to great lengths to have my credit bureau correct and true. Getting a false collection removed from your bureau can substantially change your score moving forward.

So to put this all in a nutshell. When a collection is filed incorrectly do the following

contact both credit bureaus and open a dispute. You will need to fax them your ID, a letter, and proof of the mistake. You will need to include all your contact information for them to process. Use this same letter for the collection agency

-contact the collection agency and have proof that it was falsely reported. You will want to speak to a manager of that collection company, not an agent. Ask them to “manually” delete and “electronically” delete from your bureau. Get proof that this was done via a letter or email sent to you from them. Get proof of the day they are sending request to both bureaus.

-contact the credit bureaus again and follow up with them that the collection agencies made the request to remove.

-If you are having challenges with the collection agency their is no harm in following up everyday, both through phone , fax and email. I always suggest email as it is always date stamped.

-Remember to allow 90 days for update on your bureau, once they confirm the correction.

-Paper Trail is key. Be logical, and be polite. We are all human

Just my 2 Cents

-M

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