Have you (or perhaps someone you know who got behind on bills) been charged an extra processing fee by the collection company? Have you been bullied by a debt collector? Has the collector blabbed your personal information to others?
In a report out today, the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) reveals that some collectors are guilty of the following:
- Charging a processing fee on the debt.
- Lying to consumers that if they don’t pay immediately their credit would be further harmed.
- Revealing information about the person’s debts to friends and family while trying to track them down.
- Failing to properly investigate and validate a disputed account.
As a result of these crimes plus illegal practices by some auto loan servicers and student loan servicers, the CFPB has recovered $11,000,000 in damages. This money is to be distributed to 225,000 consumers who have been harmed.
If this is you (or possibly someone you know), contact the CFBP here. Please feel free to post this on social media to help get the word out. You never know who among your acquaintances might be due a nice rebate check.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act includes Statutes of Limitations on how long negative credit can remain on your credit report. Here is a quick list for your reference.
Late Payments: 7 years from the late payment date
Collections, Charge-Offs: A late account becomes a collection or charge-off after it is 180 days past due. It must be removed 7 years after the last date of delinquency.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: 10 years from the file date.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy: 7 years after the file date.
Judgments: These are more complex. They have a Statute of Limitations of 7 years; however, they may be revived at any time by the judgment holder, making them last indefinitely until paid.
Unpaid Tax Lien: Forever, no Statute of Limitations.
Paid Tax Lien: 7 years from the date of release.
Word of Advice: File the release with your courthouse so the 7-year clock starts.
Hot Tip: If an IRS tax lien is less than $25,000 and paid, you can use IRS Form 12277 to have it removed within 90 days.
Heartfelt thanks to Chad Kusner, President of Credit Repair Resources LLC, for this information.
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