Remove Late Payments from Your Credit Report Legally
Jan 13, 2019
A late payment, however trivial, is a blotch in your otherwise perfectly normal credit report. It can stay on your report for several years, however, the significance of one default can be made up by consistent timely and positive payments.
The Federal Trade Commission has warned people to stay away from businesses that claim to fix all your credit problems, as these could very well be scams.
The mention of a delay in payment not only makes your credit score look bad, but it also gives creditors and other organizations an excuse to question your creditworthiness.
A prospect that is not worth it at all. Irrespective of what may have caused the delay in payment, the fact that credit card companies and reporting agencies will note is that, the late payment was because of your fault and not theirs.
Creditors are expected to report accurate information to credit report agencies, and can remove a negative late payment only if it was proved to be entered erroneously by the credit agency. Erroneous entries of late payment can be made because of miscalculations during generating the report and when the client doesn't receive his statement on time or at all.
Removing Late Payments Legally
Disputing Erroneous Late Payments
☛ You must make it a point to apply for a copy of your credit report from all three major credit agencies, and check for discrepancies such as charged-off accounts, late payments, and judgments.
☛ As per Federal law, you are allowed one free credit report every 12 months, which can be issued from the three major credit report bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian.
☛ Keeping a tab on the entries made in your credit report can help you detect flaws before anyone else does.
☛ If you suspect that the late payment has been entered wrongfully, contact your credit bureau and have them reevaluate the report.
☛ You will need to send a request to the credit bureau asking them to investigate items in your credit report, that you deem are erroneously entered. This investigation is free of cost.
☛ The credit bureau will have 30 days to report their findings to you in writing. They will also need to send a copy of the altered report to you. If the items questioned by you cannot be verified, they shall be removed from your credit report.
☛ You must also ask the credit reporting company to send a notice of the corrections made, to all those who received a copy of your credit report in the past few months. This may include, potential employers, banks, landlords, and loan agencies.
☛ If the investigation does not alter the outcome of your credit report and finds no faults, you must request that a copy of the dispute statement be attached with your file for future reference.
Ways to Avoid Late Payments
Initiate Automatic Payments
☛ Another tougher way to get late payments removed from your credit report is to initiate a negotiation with the creditor, requesting that you be allowed to sign up for automatic payment.
☛ The advantage of availing automatic payment is that, you don't have to worry about being late in payment, etc., since the money will be deducted without you having to be personally involved in the transaction.
☛ The problem with using this method will arise only when there is insufficient funds in the account to carry out the deduction.
☛ Some may find this process intrusive to the extent that it may eat into their savings or monthly expenses, if they do not have sufficient finances to pay the bill at a certain point in time.
The Seven-year Wait
☛ late payment will stay on your credit report for seven years, however, that does not mean you're doomed for that many years.
☛ Even though this information reflects on your credit report, it does not negatively impact your creditworthiness if you have paid your dues.
☛ On the other hand, having delinquent outstanding payments for items showing up on your credit report will severely hamper your chances of requesting for loans in the future.
☛ As long as you are paying your bills regularly and on time, your positive data will count for more in your credit score as compared to your past negative data. Which means, that the older a negative entry gets, the less significant it becomes as compared to recent and consistent positive credit behavior.
Meanwhile, you will need to ensure that you are paying your bills on time and clearing out your debts.