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    Collections Agency Advice

    Somehow, one of my accounts has ended up in collections. I had thought I had long paid it off, but apparently I still owed 80 cents or something. From that point on, many late fees later, I owe 300 or so.
    Now I get a call from a collections agency, and sure enough, I have a collections account.
    I dont mind paying the whole thing off. But what's the best way to deal with this situation?



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Check your PM. I work in the mortgage industry and see it all the time.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    They came after you for an original amount of 80 cents? I would contact the company that turned you in and see if you can work it out that way. Start there first. The collection agency might actually tell you to do this as well.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    I owed 3 cents on a credit agency account 1 time. I blew the heck up on the oporater and found out who turned me in for 3 cents since they were reporting it on my credit. Needless to say when I got a hold of the company the 18 year old kid got an ear full. It was actually a credit card account where I moved money from one account to the other. It was with the same company. I spoke to a supervisor who wiped out the 3 cent credit balance that they did not move over. Then I cancelled my credit card immediatly.

    The advice I have is to call the company that sent you to collections and let them know that 80 cents has turned into $300.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by gogagig View Post
    Somehow, one of my accounts has ended up in collections. I had thought I had long paid it off, but apparently I still owed 80 cents or something. From that point on, many late fees later, I owe 300 or so.
    Now I get a call from a collections agency, and sure enough, I have a collections account.
    I dont mind paying the whole thing off. But what's the best way to deal with this situation?
    One of the things you can do is hire a firm that does "credit repair". They will negotiate down the debt and will fix your credit score at the same time. It will cost a little, but the negotiation of the payoff will probably pay for most if not all of it.


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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    The only problem with negotiating settlements is that it doesn't always help your credit. Maybe with the credit repair firm it could help but if you just negotiate a settlement it won't help your credit at all.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Go with Constanza's "Krueger no live here". That'll distract them for a little while.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    The thing is, I dont mind paying off the full account without even negotiating. I am more concerned about how I can salvage something in my credit report



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmNro6z_OkQ"]YouTube - Free Credit Report Rap[/ame]


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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    I had a collection come after me after I closed my US Bank account...I didn't have any problem paying it but the bank had no idea where it came from and once it went to teh collection firm they couldn't do anything about it. So I argued the heck out of it, and all I got was them to lower it from 400 dollars to 212 which was nice...but I had no idea where it came from as I closed out that account with 0 in it.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    I had that happen to me once on an old cable bill. I sent a courteous and professionally worded letter via certified mail to the collection agency requesting a detailed billing history and if they were unable to provide me with one or were otherwise unable to give me any kind of proof that I owed this debt, I would consider the matter closed. I never heard anything further.

    They buy these closed debts for fractions of pennies on the dollar and if only a few people actually pay, they make money.



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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by djkent01 View Post
    One of the things you can do is hire a firm that does "credit repair". They will negotiate down the debt and will fix your credit score at the same time. It will cost a little, but the negotiation of the payoff will probably pay for most if not all of it.
    99.9% of "credit repair" companies are a complete and utter rip-off.

    I'd be very, very cautious in approaching one of these.

    The correct approach is to go to the entity that owned the original account. With a lawyer. (Lawyer's letters are typically relatively affordable and have a way of getting people's attention.) I would bet money they've violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act, or are afraid they may have and can be convinced to STFU and recall the account.

    BTW - You don't owe them jack for "fees and penalties".

    Whatever you do DON'T let this slide.


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  13. #13
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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Thanks for all the suggestions guys. So the original bill was from a doctor's office. Turns out, after 6 months with the collections agency, the account goes back to the doctor. Am I better off waiting for it to go back to the doctor's office and then paying them?



  14. #14
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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by gogagig View Post
    Thanks for all the suggestions guys. So the original bill was from a doctor's office. Turns out, after 6 months with the collections agency, the account goes back to the doctor. Am I better off waiting for it to go back to the doctor's office and then paying them?
    Actually, doctor's offices are the easiest to deal with.

    Go to the doctor himself. Negotiate whatever deal you can get; have him recall the debt and pay them off.

    Do not waste your time talking to the lady at the desk. (Unless it's a small office and the lady is his wife. I know, it happens...)

    It's complete b.s. that the debt "goes to collections and cannot be recalled". They can get it back if they want to bad enough.

    A lot of times, doctors offices will have "gotcha!" bills. For instance, you paid off the bill for the doctor's visit, and the doctor's fees, but the "thingamajig tests" bills separately, and they never billed you correctly, and you had no idea you even owed that money to begin with.

    Therefore, you still owe the money, but they cannot legitimately make the bill "late" or have it "go to collections". BTW - There will be all sorts of b.s. "fees and penalties" that don't really exist. Have them take those off.

    Once you've paid your legitimate bill, you can then contest your credit report, and the doctor's office will affirm that you paid in full and on time.

    And, obtw, always get the "paid in full" thing in writing and NEVER give them electronic access to funds.


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    Re: Collections Agency Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by scottie33 View Post
    I had a collection come after me after I closed my US Bank account...I didn't have any problem paying it but the bank had no idea where it came from and once it went to teh collection firm they couldn't do anything about it. So I argued the heck out of it, and all I got was them to lower it from 400 dollars to 212 which was nice...but I had no idea where it came from as I closed out that account with 0 in it.
    Do you know that there is an entire industry that just trolls for bad debt? Collectors who will buy an account for 1 or 2 cents on the dollar for Jeff Smith, and then call every Jeff whose last name begins with "S" and intimidates them into paying for money they don't even owe?

    This tactic is especially effective on the elderly and younger people, who don't keep good records, and/or can be intimidated into paying just to keep their credit score high.

    So basically, you gave $212 to a thief, and that was "nice", because he didn't steal the whole $400 from you?

    I know it's too late for you, but for public information, you need to keep a receipt for when you close an account, or pay a significant bill, and force THEM to prove that you owe the money.

    If they can't come up with that info within 30 days, you don't owe the money....


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