How to delete late payments from credit report

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) enables the consumer to challenge and delete any information on his or her credit report for "completeness and accuracy." Anytime a consumer files a dispute, the credit agencies are required by law to contact the creditor and confirm that the information is verifiable, accurate, and not outdated. In some scenarios, the credit bureau must exceed a simple verification of the creditor's record. If the credit bureau has not received verification from the creditor within 30 days, then, the credit bureau is required to promptly remove the disputed credit listing.

A recent settlement between the State of New York and the three largest credit bureaus will give consumers a grace period of six months before medical debts appear on a consumer's credit report. The credit agencies will be required to remove a medical debt/collection once it is reported as paid or settled.

The first step in removing bad credit is to obtain a copy of your credit report. Everyone is entitled to a free credit report from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion at your request, once every 12 months. Unfortunately, the credit agencies are not required to provide you with your credit score. The agencies will provide you with your credit score for a fee.

After obtaining your credit reports. Carefully compare the credit reports. It is possible that bad credit is reported on one report and not on another. If you believe that the bad credit is in error, dispute it with the credit agency.

How old is the bad credit?

The time period is seven years for delinquent and unpaid credit accounts. Chapter 7 bankruptcies take 10 years to fall of a credit report. Unfortunately, seven or ten year time period is not always observed because collection companies buy and seller delinquent accounts. The start date for the seven-year credit report clock is the date of delinquency with the original creditor.

Many creditors wants to continue to do business with you, and may remove derogatory credit listings in order to continue that relationship. The industry term is "goodwill adjustment". It can’t hurt to ask the creditor to remove the late payment.

Be careful with charge off accounts

You might be tempted to payoff a charge off to improve your credit score, however, if the debt is paid off, the account will be updated and consequently, the seven year clock on the debt may start all over again. The only exception would be if you could get the creditor to agree in writing to remove the delinquency from your credit report.


How to remove credit card information from your iPhone

Pay to delete credit report

If you have an iPhone, then chances are you have a credit card tied to your device in some way, shape, or form. Whether you’re using it for downloading apps with your Apple ID, linking it to use for NFC-based Apple Pay payments, or saving it to make payments through Safari with AutoFill, then you’ve got your credit card information stashed with Apple.

Because credit card information is one of those things you probably try to keep safe from identity thieves and malware threats, it’s understandable that you might have a conscience about removing them from your tech. In this tutorial, we’ll show you three different ways to remove your credit card information from your iPhone.

How to remove a credit card from your Apple ID

The first and most common place for a credit card to reside for use with your iPhone is in your Apple ID settings. This is the credit card that will be billed any time you buy apps, in-app purchases, movies, music, and more from Apple’s digital content stores.

To remove a credit card that’s already been associated with your Apple ID, follow these steps:

1) Launch the App Store app and scroll all the way down to the bottom of the app.

Pay to delete credit report

3) In the pop-up menu, tap on the blue View Apple ID button.

4) Enter your password, or authenticate with Touch ID to continue.

5) Now that you’re in the Account Settings page, tap on the Payment Information button.

Pay to delete credit report

6) If you see your credit card information here, tap on the None option under the Payment Type header.

After selecting None, your existing credit card information will be erased from your Apple ID. You can confirm this by tapping on your old credit card vendor, and you’ll notice that you’ll have to re-enter all of your old credentials again.

7) Once satisfied, leave the setting to None and tap on the blue Done button at the top right of the app.

After following these steps, you have successfully removed your credit card information from your Apple ID!

How to delete a credit card from Apple Pay

Another place where your credit card could be residing is in your Apple Pay settings. This is the credit card that gets billed any time you make an Apple Pay-qualified purchase through a supported app or when you make an NFC purchase at a retailer that supports near-field communication payments at the register.

To delete a credit card that’s associated with your iPhone for Apple Pay, follow these steps:

1) Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.

2) Scroll down and tap on the Wallet & Apple Pay cell.

Pay to delete credit report

3) Next, tap on the credit card you want to remove from Apple Pay.

4) Scroll all the way down and tap on the red Remove Card button.

Pay to delete credit report

5) In the pop-up prompt that appears, tap on the red Remove button to confirm your choice.

Now the selected credit card has been removed from Apple Pay on your iPhone!

How to delete a credit card from Safari AutoFill

The other place a credit card might be residing on your iPhone is in your Safari settings, where you might have trained iOS to automatically fill out your personal data in web forms that require payment information to complete a purchase.

To remove a credit card that’s associated with your iPhone’s Safari web browser, follow these steps:

1) Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.

Pay to delete credit report

5) When asked to authenticate with Touch ID, use your fingerprint to verify your identity.

Pay to delete credit report

6) Tap on the credit card you wish to remove from your AutoFill settings.

7) Tap on the blue Edit button at the top right of the page.

8) Tap on the red Delete Credit Card button at the bottom of the page.

Pay to delete credit report

9) Confirm you want to remove the credit card by tapping on the red Delete button one more time.

And that’s all there is to it for removing a credit card that has been associated with your iPhone’s Safari AutoFill settings!

Have you ever needed to remove or change credit card information on your device before? If so, let us know why in the comments below.


I Heard I Can Pay to Delete Things on My Credit Report. Is That True? – Lori

Pay to delete credit report

Hi, I have quite a few accounts in collections that are delinquent. I am a young adult and have recently became more concerned with my credit score/history. I have heard many things about a pay-to-delete that can be sent to a creditor. I have some small inquires like $125 cable bill, $225 AT&T, and $147 to a gym. The big debt is my old apartments. For some reason they have charged me twice for the complexes and Experian refusses to delete the doubled account. ($3000) What is the best way to go about taking care of my debt? I am willing to pay of some other debt but I don’t see a point when it won’t be deleted off of my credit. What can I do.

How can I fix my credit?? Is there a such thing as Pay-To-Delete?? HELP. :'(

Thank you for your question. Pay-for-deletes are very rare at the creditor level, but are sometimes possible with collection agencies.

In your situation, the cable bill, the apartments, and the gym are more than likely being reported by a collection agency rather than the original creditor. So, you may find success with pay-for-deletes on these particular accounts. Although, aside from the apartment account, your balances are very low and may not be enticing enough to the collection agencies to agree to a pay-for-delete.

If the AT&T account is for a cell phone, it is probably being reported directly by AT&T and you’ll experience a lot more resistance to your request for deletion.

As far as the Experian situation is concerned, I would wait to tackle that if you intend on settling these accounts. The reason why is if you attempt to clean up the dispute now, you will be demonstrating your intentions of resolving your credit, and subsequently your debts. This will weaken your position if you intend on negotiating settlements. As the collectors will become more confident in their ability to collect from you, because you have made your intentions known by attempting to clean things up first.

So the steps you should take are…

  • Figure out a way to generate the funds to resolve these accounts as soon as possible. If your future credit is your concern, you want to resolve these accounts as soon as you’re able. So your clock of rehabilitation will start ticking.
  • Initiate your negotiations with the collection company that is handling the apartment account. Are you familiar with the breakdown of their charges? Are they charging you for carpet or any items that may need to be pro-rated? A lot of apartment complexes will attempt to charge for carpet at its full value. When in reality, carpet has a 7 year life expectancy, and if you moved out when the carpet was 6 years old, you should only be held liable for 1 year of its value.
  • Once you have become comfortable with the balance that they’re claiming, if you prefer to settle the debt, make the pay-for-delete request part of your offer. If you would rather pay the account in full, make the pay-for-delete request contingent on full payment. If they work with you on the pay-for delete request, that should resolve your issue with the double reporting. Assuming it’s the same agency that is appearing twice. Is it? If they won’t agree to the deletion, then once you pay or settle the account, make a request to them to remove the duplicate item.
  • In respect to the other accounts, they’re all small balances so you’re better off paying them in full. Call the other collection agencies and offer them pay-for-deletes in exchange for full payment. As mentioned earlier, any accounts that are reported by original creditors and not the agencies themselves will be far more complex to have deleted.

Lori, it sounds like you have read a lot of the hoopla the internet has to offer. It’s a very common misconception to think that since the delinquent accounts remain on your credit, and the fact that your credit score doesn’t change directly due to the resolution of collection accounts and charge offs, that you’re doomed.

That couldn’t be further from the truth. I have written an article about charge offs and credit scores that will help you understand how your rehabilitation works.

Please feel free to follow up with any questions in the comments. Good luck to you.

Pay to delete credit reportI was formerly one of the best debt collectors in the country and since 2002 I’ve been helping people settle their delinquent debts right away. – About Jared Strauss

Don’t worry – I wasn’t the huffy-puffy type. 🙂

Since 2002, we’ve been the only organization in the country that limits our debt assistance service to consumers who can settle their debts right away.

Jared is a debt industry professional who has volunteered his time to help answer reader questions.

If you have a debt related question you’d like to ask our team, just use the online form.


Credit Repair Strategies: How to Write a Pay For Delete Letter and When to Send It

Disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer, so please don't construe this as legal advice. I'm simply sharing my research and experience in credit repair.

While it's true that you can survive without credit, building wealth is incredibly difficult without a healthy credit history. For most of us, there are some items which are simply too expensive to purchase outright. These types of purchases, such as a new home or automobile, generally require some sort of financing. Without a decent credit score, you'll end up paying a higher premium on the money borrowed to pay for these big-ticket items. This is especially true in the wake of the 2008 market-crash, which has caused lenders to be increasingly risk-averse in the new economic climate. Having a debt in collections is one of the highest-impact factors to your credit score. Whatever your reasons for getting to this point, you need to be strategic about your next move. A pay for delete letter can be an effective tactic if utilized correctly. A goodwill deletion letter (also known as a clean credit letter) can also be a useful tool in repairing your credit. In this article, I'll go over how and when to write each of these letters, the difference between them, and their relationship to each other in an overall debt collection removal strategy. Where possible, I'll offer my own personal experiences with this.

Before you begin the process of credit repair, it's important to know the rules. Although it's too dry to read in its entirety, you should familiarize yourself with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). This document regulates the extent of what debt collectors can do and imposes rules on their interaction with you. If you have documented evidence of a collections agency violating these laws, it can be tremendous bargaining leverage and potentially grounds to have a debt removed altogether.

You are also actually entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the three major reporting agencies once per year. But BEWARE! There are a lot of "free credit report" scams out there. In general, if a site is asking for billing info, it's probably a bad sign.

Timing is Everything: Debt Validation and The Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations on the reporting of a debt is typically around 7 years. However this can vary between states and types of debt. Unfortunately there's really no substitute for research in this area. I've heard stories of people walking away from debts but, in my opinion, this seems incredibly risky. If you're down to your last resort, this is something that can be examined further, but I never considered outlasting the statue of limitations as way to clear to my credit report. However, if you notice your credit report shows adverse items older than the statute of limitations, you do have the right to have these removed.

Another useful tactic is debt validation. The FCRA provides 30 days for any collections agency to provide evidence that the debt is actually yours. During this period, they must cease contacting you until they can validate the debt. If 30 days elapses and they can't validate the debt, they need to remove it. If you believe the debt collector is contacting you in error, you absolutely should enter the debt validation process. Some recommend that this process is used in every collections situation as a stalling tactic, but I'm of the opinion that once a collections agency has hard evidence of your debt, that you've lost some bargaining leverage when trying to settle. Again this is a strategic choice and highly dependent on your personal situation.

There are lots of websites that offer a form letter to send. The tone of this letter is often very formal, filled with legalese and, in my opinion, a bit threatening. It's important to understand that under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, if the debt is verifiable, the debt collection agency is not under any legal obligation to delete your account rather than reporting it as settled. Settled is better than delinquent, but what we're really after is removing any adverse report completely. Therefore, what you're requesting is a favor for a favor. However, Your letter should strike the balance between legally protecting yourself and requesting some assistance. This is done by avoiding any implicating language but having a semi-personal tone. I was able to have some degree of success by modifying an existing form letter and adding a human element. Here's what I wrote, offering to pay

70% of what I owed in return for deletion:

Dear Sir or Madam,

The Result: I ended up having to pay the full amount, but the collections agency did delete the report. Perhaps coming in closer to the full amount may have gotten me a discount. It's also important to consider the nature and amount of the loan. Mine was a school loan in the thousands. Considering that student loans can't even be discharged through bankruptcy, I'm chalking this up as a win.

This letter should be sent only after a debt is settled. In it, you're essentially asking the agency to stop reporting your debt as settled to credit bureaus and delete it altogether. While the pay-for-delete letter is trying to use some amount of money as leverage to gain a favor, this letter is strictly a request for a favor. When writing this letter, keep in mind that the collections agency has already settled their debt and therefore has no vested interest in helping you out. The tone of this should be a bit more personal and humble. While I haven't written one of these, in the examples I've seen, it tends to help if its an older debt and you've since established some good credit history.

Credit repair is a tricky thing and at times it can feel like walking a tight-rope. Many collections agencies use fear-mongering tactics and rely on information asymmetry to apply pressure. The best way to make it through the arduous process of credit repair with your sanity in check is to be informed.


How to Remove Collections from Your Credit Report

A collection is when your overdue bill is sold from the original creditor (such as a credit card company or doctor’s office) to a collection agency. The debt is usually sold for just pennies on the dollar, but the creditor would rather bring in a fraction of the bill than spend the human resources and capital it takes to continually try and collect it. After buying the debt, the collection agency then reports the account to each of the three credit bureaus and begins to seriously attempt to collect the full owed balance.

Pay to delete credit report

If you already have a collection on your credit report, you know this is bad for a couple of different reasons. First, you could be subject to aggressive phone calls and letters from the collection agency. Secondly, your credit score will take a huge drop. Just how much depends on the size of the balance. Plus, it will remain on your report for seven years from the original default date, even after you’ve settled with the collection agency. However, there are a few instances in which you can have the collection removed entirely from your credit report. We’ll show you four methods that are worth giving a try.

A collection on your credit report won’t last forever, but it helps if you can expedite getting rid of it. Here are four ways to remove a collection so that you can begin the credit repair process immediately.

According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, all of the information contained in your credit report must be both accurate and complete. Anything else is legally required to be removed. That means your best shot for success in having a collection deleted is to scour your report for any type of error in the way it’s been documented. First, make sure that the collection actually belongs to you. With such a large amount of data being constantly analyzed by the three credit bureaus, it’s not completely unheard of to have accounts and collections mixed up.

If the collection does belong to you, check all of the information listed with the account. Look at the default date associated with the account. Make sure it’s the same date it went into default from your original creditor, not the collection agency. Some less reputable collection agencies try to report the wrong date to give them a longer time frame to collect the debt. Also, review how much time has passed since the original date of default. If more than seven years have passed, the collection should have completely dropped off your report. If it hasn’t, you have the right to request that it be removed.

When any of these red flags appear on your credit report, you must open a dispute with each individual credit bureau. They are required by law to investigate and respond to your complaint within 30 days of receiving your request. If the accuracy of the debt cannot be verified by the collection agency, then the credit bureaus are required to have it removed from your report. It may take a few weeks to see the change on your credit report, but once you do, you should also notice a huge jump in your credit score.

A popular notion surrounding the removal of a collection is that you can pay to have a negative item deleted from your credit report, also known as “pay for delete.” Some credit experts frown upon this method because legally, the credit bureaus can list a collection for the full seven years. However, some debt collectors use pay for delete as a collection strategy. Whether or not it’s a good idea for you could depend on a few different factors.

Typically what happens is that if you consent to pay your owed amount in full, the collection agency may then agree to have the collection removed from your credit report, since they are the ones who originally reported the information. The downside to this tactic is that you usually need to pay the full amount owed. That means there is little to no room for negotiating a settlement as you can often do with a collection agency. Depending on how much you owe, this may or may not be a practical idea for you.

Also, pay attention to the timing of your collection and your future financial goals. If the collection is six years old and set to drop off next year, you may not want to bother paying the full amount. This is especially true if you don’t foresee having any major financing needs before then. On the other hand, if you are planning on buying a house and can’t wait until the next year, your chances for approval and your interest rate could potentially benefit from getting that collection removed as quickly as possible.

When you do decide to negotiate for a pay for delete, be sure to get every single detail in writing before you sign anything or send in your payment. You don’t want to fall for a bait and switch where you think you’re going to have the collection removed and then come to find out it was never included in your contract.

The next best thing to do when you have a collection on your credit report is to avoid adding any other negative items. Even though your collection could stay visible on your report for a full seven years, it won’t actually impact your credit score that entire time. In fact, your credit score naturally begins to repair itself as time goes by. If a few years have already passed, your score might not even be that hugely affected by the collection. So get started with other healthy financial behaviors to avoid damaging any progress that is currently underway.

That primarily means you should pay all of your bills on time each month. Just a single 30-day late payment can cause a big dip in your score and it will continue to drop for every extra 30 days you are late. Imagine what a few of those a year could do to your credit score! Avoid hurting your score anymore by being diligent with your bills. Any easy tip to stay on top of your due dates? Sign up for autopay — just be sure to still review the amount due each month to make sure the total is accurate.

Next, work on paying down existing debt, particularly those accounts with high interest rates. We’re not talking about your mortgage or even low-interest student loans. Instead, focus on credit card debt or maybe an expensive car loan. By lowering your debt amount, particularly with revolving credit like credit and retail cards, you’ll also help out your credit score. Then once the collection comes off, your score will already be in a strong position. All of these actions also lead to long-term financial health because you’re spending and saving in a way that truly works for you. Once that behavior becomes a habit, you’ll be on a positive trajectory throughout your future.

4. Get Help from a Credit Repair Company

When you have several negative items on your credit report, including collections, it might be worth your while to find a reputable credit repair service to help. The best ones employ staff lawyers and paralegals who know credit law inside and out and are professionals when it comes to the art of negotiation.

Not only will you likely see better results by hiring a credit repair company compared to taking on creditors and debt collectors on your own, you’ll also save yourself a significant amount of time and effort. Disputing just a single negative item on your credit report can take hours on the phone over the course of several calls. A credit repair company does the work for you.

Before signing up, most companies offer a free consultation to review your specific situation. If they don’t offer this service, it could be a potential red flag. Together you’ll review the items on your credit report and you’ll receive expert advice on which ones to target for removal. If you just have one or two items, the company may not recommend hiring them. But if it looks like several negative items are impacting your report and have the potential to be removed, it’s worth scheduling that call.

You can also receive advice on the best way to negotiate with your creditors and what kind of settlements, if any, to agree to. And since you’ll be dealing with seasoned professionals, you don’t have to worry about saying the wrong thing on the phone to your collectors. The stress and squeamishness are taken away by someone who fully understands the law and your rights.