If you have had credit challenges in the past, beware of unscrupulous companies that promise they can solve all your problems. Far too many take advantage of you. They typically will charge you an upfront setup fee and then a monthly charge for as long as you remain a client. Most of them just take the “shotgun” approach and dispute every negative item on your report, every month. The credit reporting agency is then required to go back to the original creditor and ask them to validate whether the trade line in question is legitimate. If they are owed money, they will always validate it because they know if they do, you will have to settle with them eventually if you want to remove the negative item. If you had late payments, they typically have an automated process in place to validate these. So, companies that take this “shotgun” approach, get you nowhere.
Legitimate credit repair firms will encourage you to settle your debts and give you tips on how to negotiate reduced settlements. Once you have the debt “settled and paid” they then go to work to dispute these negative items. Just because it is paid, doesn’t mean it doesn’t stay on your credit as a negative item, it does. But there is a very high likelihood that, if a collection agency has been paid and they receive a request to validate the negative item that has been disputed, they will not bother because they have no incentive since they have already been paid. If they do not respond to the dispute request, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the credit reporting agency must remove the negative item altogether. This is the best approach.
With late payments, the best chance to remove them is to call the creditor directly and ask them if they would be kind enough to expunge it from your record. If you have a decent track record with them and this is a one-time occurrence, they may just work with you. And remember, we work with folks all the time to offer tips and advice regarding their credit. Feel free to take us up on it!
Until Next Time!!