04-02-2010 02:49 PM
Need someone's help please.... I have an AT&T account that is showing still negative on my credit report. However, there is also a collection agency for AT&T. My question is do I pay the OC, then debt validate with collection agency to remove? Or should I just pay the Collection Agencyy and then let AT&T know that it's reporting incorrectly? Any advice please let me know! Anyone have a contact for AT&T please IM me that as well!
Thanks for the help!!!
04-03-2010 03:04 PM
I'd talk to AT&T and see if they would still accept payment for the account and if upon receipt of payment would then recall it from the CA. If they still own the debt, they have the ability to do this. Also use restrictive endorsement on your certified check to AT&T.
If AT&T won't accept payment, DV the CA before you PFD...I had an ATT debt reporting on my report as well but the CA was unable to validate the debt and AT&T couldn't give details on the suspect debt due to many company aquisitions (ATT was NOT reporting to my report).
04-03-2010 08:12 PM
Whether an OC will accept payment once they have contracted with a CA is hard to predict. It depends on a lot of internal business decisions on their part, and it may simply not be to their benefit.
Once your debt is sold to a collection agency, the original creditor is out from under any further ownership of rights to, and thus acceptance of, the debt.
However, if the OC merely contracted with a CA to collect on their behalf, they still retain legal ownership of the debt.
Then it gets real complicated. Once they contract with a CA, the OC can then do a tax writeoff of the bad debt for internal tax purposes. This is called a charge off.
Some OCs will routinely do a CO before collection referral, and also report a CO to your CR. But just because they did not report a CO to your CR does not mean they have not done such an accounting transaction with the IRS.
If the CO then accepts your payment, then they lose this loss - a loss that previously helped to offset any taxes that they might have paid. That involves a lot of account dept shuffling in their next tax return. Are they willing to undergo this internal business expense?
By accepting your payment, that might undercut potential CA profits, so it might not help them in future business relationships with the CA. All things the OC considers.
This is a bit simplified, but my opinion is that the original creditor is unlikely to take your money unless it is for, or very near, the full amount owed.
If your account is with an in-house collection agency of the OC, that is an entity that is owned or part of the original creditor, then I would try first to pay with the original creditor. While such in-house collection activities are still considered “debt collectors” under FCRA 803(6), and thus subject to all of the provisions of the FDCPA, they are nonetheless not third-party collection agencies. You may have better luck with them.
Either way, there is no provision of either the FDCPA or the FCRA that requires, once a legimate collection is reported to your CR, that any removal of that reporting is ever required, regardless of whether debt payment is accepted by the OC or CA.
04-03-2010 10:09 PM