Credit Removal Request

Who can initiate a credit removal request?

A credit removal can be done by you, a parent, or the legal guardian. If the account is not yours and you’re asking for it to be deleted in the “dispute” section (which I’m going to show how further down), then you must make the request personally.

What kind of information can be removed?

Generally, there are 3 types of items of information that can be removed. If an account is inaccurate (which I will go further into below), and if you are the victim of identity theft and the information does not belong to you, and the other is paid off (paid in full or closed) so as to not show a balance.

When can it be done?

You should do a credit removal request immediately to the credit bureaus. You do not need to ask the company (ie bank, collection agency) first. That is the bureaus job once you dispute it with them. You need to make sure to highlight what is inaccurate in your dispute and to provide proof of that.

How do you make a request?

A removal request must be done by writing a letter explaining why you want it removed (of course, use your own words). You should also include your contact information (name, address, phone number, date of birth). Send it by certified mail with a return receipt so you can prove they received your letter. Provide a detailed explanation of why the item is inaccurate and supplement the dispute with any documents.

How long does it take?

The removal request will be processed within 30 days. If the company did not receive your letter or did not process it before the 30 days were up, they must send you a letter confirming that it was received and will process to remove it. It can’t take more than 45 days, but I suggest sending in your removal request at least two weeks before the 30 day period ends.

How fast does information come off a credit report?

Most companies (banks) report to each credit agency once a month. It takes anywhere from 2-4 months to see the result of your removal request, though it can take longer depending on which credit agency you are using.

How Do You Get Things Removed From Your Credit Report?

There are three major credit reporting agencies: TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax. It’s important to ensure all three credit reports are accurate before doing anything else. This can be done by ordering a free report from each one of the three credit bureaus every year or by going online at annualcreditreport.com. If the negative item is on all three reports then it could be harder to get it removed. Often times you need to hire a lawyer to file a lawsuit to get the item removed.

Once you have determined which credit report has the negative item, it’s time to contact the bureaus to try and have it removed. Unfortunately, creditors do not always cooperate and will fight with you to keep the negative item on your credit report. Contacting the creditor is not always easy either. They will often not respond to your requests for help or respond with confusing reasons why they can’t remove the negative item.  This is why it is important to dispute with the credit bureaus.  If you do receive a response from them it could be one of three basic types:

  • The creditor says nothing to you and just does not report
  • The creditor says they can’t remove the item even though it’s accurate because it helps them assess your creditworthiness to give you a loan or line of credit. This is known as a permissible reason for reporting negative information and means the creditor isn’t required to remove the negative report. 
  • The creditor says they can’t remove the negative item because it’s accurate, but they may still do so if you pay off the debt in full, settle for less than what is owed, or file bankruptcy. This is known as a permissible reason for reporting negative information and means the creditor isn’t required to remove the negative report.

Can A Collection Agency Remove An Item From My Credit Report?

Collection agencies are usually unable to remove items from your credit report unless the item is inaccurate or the agency agrees to pay for delete. You need to take the initiative by contacting the credit bureaus and disputing any erroneous information. Collection accounts can be disputed with a simple letter to the credit bureau explaining that you do not owe the debt and want it removed from your account. The bureaus will further investigate the claim and will remove any incorrect or unverifiable information from your report. You should take the initiative to dispute the item immediately after learning of its existence, as it can remain on your credit report for up to seven years.