Your first post is found here:
I am also moving this one to Rebuilding Your Credit as well and someone will help with the CAs and PRs.
What lead to the increase?
For your collections, DV the CA. If they present info you agree with (OC name and balance), then PFD the CA and ask them to remove the judgment off your CR. They don't have to, and I'm certainly no expert on legal reporting, but it is worth a shot if they are listed as a plaintiff.
If the CA is at $0, then send a GW to the CA asking for the same.