Hi, community. My first post - be gentle.
Despite reading all of the advice, for some reason, I picked up the phone and called a CA about an item on my CR that appeared just 4 months ago. I don't know what got into me but I was in the midst of cleaning up my credit and feeling pretty confident so the next thing i knew, my fingers were dialing.
I got a really nice seemingly sweet girl on the phone from (name withheld just in case) and we went over a few negotiations about a 35% discount if I made payments and she would update my CR to Paid. Well, I told her that would not help me and I needed it deleted because it dropped my score by like 40 points.
Well, she said that if I paid it in full (even making payments) with no discount, then she agreed to delete it. She said they do it all the time and she would send me the letter as well as the CRA.
So I started making payments and got it paid down about 50% over two weeks, then I got nervous from reading so many horror stories, and I called back and asked if she could send me the PDF agreement in writing, and she said that they don't do that, but that she was giving me her word (haha) and it was being recorded and they were forbidden by law to say things that were not true. Well, she's recording it but I wasn't! She comes off as really nice but I know, I know, she's still a collector!
Now I'm worried. I'm planning to pay off the rest over the next two weeks and I really need this deleted but I'm afraid that she might just mark it Paid after getting my money. What should I do?
Should I just call back and record her verbal agreement myself?
Should I make my last payment by check and state our agreement on the check, like, your acceptance of this check is our agreement type of thing?
I can't sleep now, thinking that I've been bamboozled.
Thanks in advance for replies!
I really wouldn't worry too much. You've already started paying on it so you pretty much have to finish. I called a CA I couldn't find any info on here, and I asked for the agreement before and she told me the same thing, that they don't do that, she did say she'd send me a letter after though. It was actually deleted before I got the letter (of course I didn't tell her that).
Just finish paying it off and if they will not do what they said, then you can try to dispute it with the CRA's and hopefully they will not respond since it's already been paid. IF THAT doesn't work.... I'm sure if she was nice enough you could manage a GW from someone there.
I don't think you have a reason to worry, you will probably be ok. GL!
The caveat to always get written confirmation of any PFD acceptance is not, in my opinion, caste on a tablet of stone.
If they wont provide prior, written confirmation, you are faced with no agreement.
If its a show-killer, sometimes you just have to take them at their word.
They dont want FTC and/or BBB complaints, and could also face a breach of oral contract action.
If it comforts you at all, your story will stop me from calling. I totally know what you mean, though. I got so excited getting on here and reading about a real strategy that brought success. My fingers were itching and I just didn't want to wait. I had the money in my bank account and I was so ready to feel some measure of success. I was able to stave off, but I sooooo wanted to make that call. I understand you completely.
I'll keep my fingers crossed for you (with brief breaks so I can finish writing all my letters!).
Also the other thing I want to mention.... is I think that it's important whether it's outside of SOL or not. If it is, then I would NOT pay it without a written and I would tell them FINE you won't be getting my money and they may change their mind.
If it IS NOT out of SOL.... this was the case with mine... only a year or two old. I took them at their word only because I was going to pay it anyway and it was a small amount so I figured I'd dispute or file BBB like Robert said if they didn't do what they claimed.
The CA that I have been working with has not sent one letter even stating that my debt has been paid but they have kept their promise to delete each item that was paid within a week or so of paying them. So that works for me as long as its gone.
Thanks for the responses! I'll keep my fingers crossed and hope that not all collection agents are evil liars, as you sometimes get that feeling the more you read these horror stories and experience it yourself! She sounded really nice and sincere, lol.
Chances are, they will keep their word on it. Once paid they generally don't want to mess with it anymore.
Just to update this - they kept their word! I made the final payment last week and she promised me verbally that it would be deleted. They update weekly so I waited on pins and needles and even got up early to check, lol. Sure enough, its gone. So not ALL CAs are scum! Still better to at least strongly attempt to get it in writing, but sometimes you have to go on your gut because that's all you have.
The one deletion didn't move my FAKO score at all though, surprisingly, and it was a new collection, so I expected SOMETHING. I'm using CreditKarma and also paying EQ directly for access to the reports/scores - is that considered FAKO too? At any rate, it didn't move, going from 5 collections to 4.
Gonna wait a couple more weeks for the total fruits of my recent labor to pay off, then buy FICO.