I have about $10K in collections items (about 15 items in total), and want to pay them off in full. I have a few questions about this before I start the process.
1) How do I go about ensuring that I get the items listed as paid in full?
2) Paid in full is the best listing for an item that was in collection, correct?
3) Will there be a change in my credit score once they are all listed as paid in full? Current score is about 525.
Also, none of these items are medical, and all are within the SOL.
Thanks in advance for all of your help.
A paid collection doesn't help your score - that's a stupidity of the "system". You'll wind up with zero balance collection items and your score will only go up as time passes and they age.
What you need to do is offer a "Pay for Delete", you'll see it as PFD in the forums. Get their written agreement that upon receipt of payment they will delete all Credit Reporting. They may claim they can't but they can.
Here's a letter I wrote for someone, no response from the CA but they're jerks...
City, State, Zip
RE: <Creditor> <Acct> CA Registration <CA's number> $xx.xx
Via Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested
Month, day, year
Dear Collection Agency:
This is an offer for payment of debt asserted by you in exchange for terms set forth below relating to deletion of items from my credit file. This is not a request for debt validation under FDCPA 809(b), or a dispute under FCRA 611(a) or 623(a)(8) of items reported by you to the credit reporting agencies.
I deny I owe this debt.
In the spirit of compromise, I am willing to pay this account IN FULL if you agree to immediate deletion of this account from any and all credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) previously reported, and that no subsequent reporting will occur to any credit reporting agency. The purpose of this settlement is merely to have this item removed from my credit files. It is not to be construed as an acknowledgment of liability for this debt in any form.
If you agree to the terms and accept this agreement, payment in full by money order in exchange for full deletion of ALL references regarding this account from my credit files, full satisfaction of the debt will be mailed within ten days of receipt of your written agreement.
NCO Financial Systems agrees to delete ALL information regarding this account from the credit reporting agencies WITHIN TEN CALENDAR (10) DAYS following receipt of payment as specified above and will not discuss the terms of this settlement with anyone, excluding your client on this account. If contacted by any third party, including credit-reporting agencies, NCO Solutions will not acknowledge that any settlement offer was made, accepted or executed and will, in fact, deny knowledge of any such account.
If you agree to the above terms, please prepare a letter on your company letterhead explicitly agreeing to the same terms as the above settlement offer and have it signed by an authorized representative of NCO Financial Systems. It is intended that this letter shall constitute a legally binding contract, enforceable under the laws of my state.
This is to direct you to contact me only by mail at the above address regarding this matter. Based on this instruction, any other form of contact is in violation of FDCPA 805(c).
A couple of observations and comments. Simply paying any collection will not help your score. It doesn't matter if the balance due is $1 or $10,000. However paying off debt looks better to anyone looking at your report at some point in the future.
Have you sent a DV (Debt Validation) letter to the CA's involved in all this? I would do that first and if by chance a CA isn't able to validate then they must ask the CRA's to delete the negative entry. You don't say how old these collections are and generally you have a 30 day time limit to ask for DV after receiving a dunning notice from a CA but some people have had success with a DV sent even after the 30 day time period. A CA never has to respond to a DV request but until they do all collections efforts must stop.
If you happen to live in Texas there is no 30 day limit and a CA must respond to your DV request within 30 days.
Here is a good thread to read about What Steps Do I take?
From a BK years ago to:
EX - 9/09 pulled by lender 802, EQ - 10/10-813, TU - 10/10-774
"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they've made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem".