How Long will a collection account stay on my credit report

by Jim B.
(Las Vegas,NV)

I have several unpaid collection accounts on my credit report that are 7 yrs old in 2011. Will these drop off of my report and can the collection agencies refile them indefinitely?

Comments for How Long will a collection account stay on my credit report

Click here to add your own comments

Dec 14, 2010
How long will collection accounts show up in my credit files?
by: Mary

Thanks for sharing your collection story with us.

The federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) limits the amount of time that negative information can remain in your credit reports. For example, a collection account can only be reported for 7 years and 6 months after the date that the account first became delinquent.

If you anticipate that the collection accounts in your credit files are close to reaching this deadline, I would do two things. First, I would order copies of your three credit reports -- your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit reports -- and review each of them to make sure that the date that each collection account first became past due is listed in all three reports. If that information is missing, dispute the accuracy of the report/s with the appropriate credit bureau/s and ask that the missing information be added.

Second, once the date for when a collection account should no longer be reported passes, review each of your credit files again to make sure that the information has in fact dropped off the reports. If it still shows up in one or more of your credit reports, dispute the accuracy of the report/s with the appropriate credit bureau/s and ask for a correction. If the information in one of your credit files is corrected, it's a good idea to wait a month or two and then check the report again to make sure that the out of date collection account has not reappeared, which sometimes happens. If it has, you'll have to dispute the accuracy of your credit file again.

By the way, you are legally entitled to obtain one free copy of each of your credit reports every year. To obtain the free reports, go to www.annualcreditreport.com. You will have to pay a small fee to obtain additional copies of your report in a given year.

Also, when you correspond with a credit bureau about a problem in your credit file, make a copy of your letter and send the original via certified mail with a return receipt requested. Sending it this way provides you with proof that your letter was received and the date of receipt, which is important because by law, a credit bureau must respond to you within 30 days of receiving your letter.

Hope this information helps.

Jun 26, 2014
Collection Accounts
by: Anonymous

I thought when the original account gets closed and goes on your credit report as collections can collection agencies continue to move the original date closed and sent to collections continually
example a Visa Account went to collections closed date 1-1-06, then it is repurchased by another collection agency I thought the original date starts the seven year process and can't keep moving forward in the future.

Reply from DebtCollectionAnswers.com

As we explain in detail in our free ebook Debt Collection Answers: How to Use Debt Collection Laws to Protect Your Rights (download here), collection accounts may be reported for seven years plus 180 days from the original date of delinquency - the date you fell behind with the original creditors. That date may not be "moved forward" to keep the debt on the credit report longer. We recommend you read our ebook, as well as our pages on how to dispute credit report errors.

Jun 26, 2014
Collection Accounts
by: Anonymous

I thought when the original account gets closed and goes on your credit report as collections can collection agencies continue to move the original date closed and sent to collections continually
example a Visa Account went to collections closed date 1-1-06, then it is repurchased by another collection agency I thought the original date starts the seven year process and can't keep moving forward in the future.

Reply from DebtCollectionAnswers.com:

That is correct. It can't be moved. The 7 years plus 180 days it can be reported is based on the original date of delinquency. Even if a new collection agency buys the debt that date must apply to the new account. We discuss this in more detail in our ebook download free here and on our page that describes what you can do about collections accounts on credit reports.

Click here to add your own comments

Return to Debt Collection Questions.

Learn how debt collection laws can help you!
This website does not provide legal advice.
All information is for educational purposes only.
Copyright 2007 - 2016 by Mary Reed and Gerri Detweiler.
All rights reserved.