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How To Get Closed Accounts Off Your Credit Report

Send A Goodwill Letter To The Lender

How to Remove Closed Accounts From a Credit Report

If you feel like going directly to a credit bureau isnt the right attack, then you can send the lender a goodwill letter directly.

This letter is a polite way to ask if a lender will remove the settled account from your credit history.

This differs from a dispute because you are asking nicely to have the settled account removed and not stating any inaccuracies.

Sending a goodwill letter is ideal for people that defaulted on a loan due to personal injuries or illnesses.

Keep in mind that creditors will look at the history of the account and try to see if you made any attempts to get caught up after one of these circumstances.

They may use this information to make a decision on your account.

At this point, you can offer to make the full payment or try to find amiddle ground.

With the lender by settling on an amount that is less than whats owed.

After finding a way to pay in full or at least some, the lender should remove the account from your credit report.

Keep in mind the negative effects of the account will be removed since it is considered to be paid, but the ragged payment history will still be available on your account.

Are Closed Accounts On Your Credit Report Bad

Closed accounts on your credit report are not inherently a bad thing. In fact, they can often be a good thing, as we will elaborate on below.

Closed accounts on your credit report, unless they are derogatory, are not bad for your credit. In fact, they are probably giving your credit a boost.

However, derogatory closed accounts can definitely have a negative impact on ones credit.

For example, if you had a credit card closed due to delinquency, meaning the creditor closed the account because you had stopped paying it, the account likely still has a balance owed.

Having a closed credit account with a balance on your credit report could really hurt your credit. According to some sources, closing a credit account removes its credit limit, so a credit card account closed with a balance would be considered maxed out or over-limit.

However, other sources say that a closed account with a balance will be treated as an open account until the balance is paid off, at which point you can expect some damage to your score, especially if you have balances on your other credit cards.

The specific way that closed accounts are treated may depend on which is used to calculate your score as well as other variables in your credit profile.

Open Vs Closed Accounts On Credit Report

In the tradeline industry, we often get questions about whether closed accounts have an impact on ones credit and, if so, what value they hold relative to open accounts.

It is possible to have a good credit score without having any open accounts. Photo by, CC 2.0.

This is an important question, because generally when you buy tradelines you are an active authorized user for two reporting cycles, and after you are removed from the account, it will begin to show as a closed account on your credit report.

Therefore, it is useful to know what impact the tradeline might have after it converts to a closed tradeline.

From what we have seen, closed accounts often can still be a very powerful influence on ones credit score.

Remember, the age of a closed account still factors into your credit, and accounts continue to age even after they have been closed. Age and payment history go hand-in-hand and together make up 50% of a FICO score, and since closed accounts can still contribute to these factors, this implies that closed accounts can still have a strong effect on your credit.

However, closed accounts may have a diminishing impact over time, since tend to prioritize recent events.

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Wait For The Information To Disappear On Its Own

Also, remember that closed accounts on your report will eventually disappear on their own. Negative information on your reports is removed after 7 years, whereas accounts closed in good standing will disappear from your report after 10 years. If you have tried to dispute incorrect negative information without success, or if your goodwill request went unanswered, its possible that youll just have to wait it out until your problem corrects itself.

If youre curious about which accounts are still on your reports or you simply want to monitor the information on your reports over time, note that you can get a free copy of your credit reports from all three credit bureaus via the website Where you could previously only get a free report from each bureau on this site once per year, you can now access a free report every week through April 2021.

Do I Need To Notify Credit Bureaus Of Paid Collections

How to Get A Closed Account Off Your Credit Report

If you pay off or settle a debt with a collection agency, the status of the collection account on your credit report should update to “paid” or “settled” within a month or two. You do not need to do anything to make that happen the collection agency should notify the three national credit bureaus to update their records.

If that doesn’t occur, you can file a dispute with each of the bureaus to have the records corrected. You’ll likely need to provide proof of payment, such as a cancelled check.

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Strategies That Wont Help Remove Negative Information

So now you know four strategies for getting negative entries off your credit file.

Sometimes, though, it helps to know what wont help remove negative information.

If youre searching for credit repair answers, know that these things wont help fix your credit:

  • Paying Off Old Stuff: A lot of people think debt collectors will remove negative information from their credit if they can just pay off the charge-offs, past-due balances, and collection accounts. In reality, paying off these accounts will not help your credit. Lenders will still see you had trouble paying off previous accounts.
  • Bankruptcy: Filing bankruptcy could help restore your financial health by reorganizing or dissolving old debts. But it wont help your credit score. In fact, the bankruptcy will pull down your score for up to 10 years. Plus, the road to bankruptcy is paved with late payments, missed payments, and collection accounts all of which will remain on your credit report along with the bankruptcy.
  • Closing Delinquent Accounts: A closed account wont look any better to prospective lenders than an open account. In fact, closing accounts could hurt your score since FICO places value on older average ages for credit accounts.

Rebuilding Your Credit Rating

Since the charged-off account will still show up on your credit report, it will continue to impair your credit score. But the good news is that as charge-offs and other negative information ages, its overall impact can lessen.

In the meantime, you can work on rebuilding a positive credit history by doing things like paying your bills on time, keeping your low, and limiting how often you apply for new credit.

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How To Remove Closed Accounts From A Credit Report

This article was co-authored by wikiHow Staff. Our trained team of editors and researchers validate articles for accuracy and comprehensiveness. wikiHow’s Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article is backed by trusted research and meets our high quality standards.There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 25,186 times.Learn more…

Incorrect information on your credit report can impact your credit score and can therefore affect your ability to secure a loan, mortgage, or credit card. Closed accounts, or accounts that youve fully paid, can stay on your credit report for up to 10 years. You might want to remove these accounts from your credit report as they can indicate to banks or other companies what your credit habits are. Removing them can be difficult, but is by no means impossible.

If A Credit Card Is Closed Can It Be Reopened

how do i remove closed accounts from my credit score – closed accounts || fast acting credit repair

In some cases, consumers may be able to reopen closed credit cards.

If your account was closed due to fraud or delinquency, banks typically do not allow these accounts to be reopened.

If it was closed voluntarily on your part or closed due to inactivity, however, you might have a chance to reopen the account if you dont wait too long.

Only some banks will allow this, and those that do have varying time limits as to when you can reopen an account, so check with your credit card issuer.

If youre within the time window and your account is eligible to reopen, heres how to reopen a closed credit card account:

  • Be ready to provide your personal information and answer security questions.
  • Explain why you closed the account and why you are requesting to reopen it.

Some issuers may require a hard inquiry before they can approve your request, which could cause a small, temporary drop in your credit score.

If your bank doesnt allow you to reopen the card, the next best solution might be to re-apply for the same card or apply for a new credit card altogether.

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How Long Will A Paid

It can take one or two billing cycles for a loan or credit card to appear as closed or paid off. Thats because lenders typically report monthly. Once it has been reported, it can be reflected in your credit score.

You can check your free credit report on NerdWallet to see when an account is reported as being closed.

About the authors:Bev O’Shea writes about credit for NerdWallet. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, MarketWatch and elsewhere.Read more

Lindsay Konsko is a former staff writer covering credit cards and consumer credit for NerdWallet.Read more

Wait For The Settled Account To Drop Off

Say you looked into the account and cant find any inaccuracies.

Or youve sent a goodwill letter trying to find common ground but the lender wont budge.

We hate to tell you, but if youve tried both of these approaches and the account wont be removed from your account, you will have towait it out.

7 years may seem like a long time, but its not forever.

In at most 7 years from the first date of your missed payment or the date you paid the account in full, it will drop from your report.

If the settled account isnt affecting your score in any way, it may just be best to wait it out instead of going back and forth with credit bureaus and the lender.

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Can I Get A Paid Collection Account Off My Credit Report

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In a Nutshell

A paid-off collection account will come off your credit report eventually, but it’s not usually possible to get this account taken off your credit report proactively. You can ask your creditor to take the account off your report – either as a condition of your full payment or as a matter of good will – but no creditor is obligated to honor this request. This article will go into detail about how an account that has been sent to collection can affect your credit score, how a “pay for delete” letter works, and what you can do if the collection account on your credit report is there by mistake.

Having a collections account noted on your credit history can have a negative impact on your finances. Maybe the negative item has dropped your credit score too low to get a good interest rate on a car loan, or maybe the reminder that you werenât always able to pay your debts on time is making new creditors hesitant to lend you credit at all. Having this account on your credit report isnât doing you any favors, but youâve worked hard and youâve paid off the collection account , so now what?

Understanding Why Its There

Get Closed Accounts Off Your Credit Report

All too often, people assume that by paying off a creditor in full this automatically means it is taken off their credit report right away. This isnt true at all, as your credit report will show all your credit accounts, no matter if they are open or closed. What this could also mean is that you can potentially have accounts that have been closed sitting on your report for months, even years before you realize and do something about it.

Now where this closed account sitting on your credit report can hurt you is if the account had any delinquencies on it. It is just sitting there bringing down your entire score, regardless of the fact you cleared it up and paid it all off.

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What Are Settled Accounts

Asettled accountis an account that has been fully paid or closed.

Types of settled accounts can be a loan that was paid in full or a closed credit card account.

Settled accounts can also be known as collection accounts.

These accounts can appear on your credit report for up to 7 and a half years from the date it was paid in full.

If you have any delinquencies or late payments, then the settled account will appear on your credit report for 7 years from your first delinquency or the original delinquency date.

Stage : An Uncollectible Bill

The process begins with an uncollectible bill . Each original creditor or medical office has a policy regarding what they will do with uncollectible debt.

A company might sell the account to a debt collector. It might turn the account over to a collection agency. It could even write the account off and make no further collection attempts, but thats not the norm.

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Common Credit Report Errors To Look Out For

According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, these are the most common errors consumers find on their credit history:

Mistaken identity

  • Wrong name, address or phone number
  • Accounts from someone with a similar name
  • New credit accounts opened by someone who stole your identity

Incorrect account status

  • Accounts wrongfully labeled as open, past due or delinquent
  • Accounts that wrongfully listed you as the owner instead of authorized user
  • Wrong date for the last payment received, date the account was opened or delinquency status
  • Same debt listed multiple times

Data management

  • Information that is not removed, despite already being disputed and corrected
  • Accounts that are listed multiple times, with different creditors


  • Incorrect credit limit

Get Free Credit Reports


Visit to order or download a free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus.

These reports wont show your credit score, but you can check them for inaccuracies and new credit applications you didnt make all of which affect your credit score.

Federal law gives you the right to one free credit report from each credit bureau each year.

Temporarily, because of the Covid-19 pandemic, you can get one free credit report from each bureau once a week.

This provision is scheduled to expire in April of 2021. After that, youll have access to a free credit report only once a year.

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How Do You Get A Collection Removed From Your Credit Reports

Lets begin with the honest truth. If theres an accurate collection account on your credit reports, odds are slim youll be able to get it removed before its been there the maximum allotted time seven years from the date of the original delinquency.

Typically, the only way to remove a collection account from your credit reports is by disputing it. But if the collection is legitimate, even if its paid, itll likely only be removed once the credit bureaus are required to do so by law.

Even so, there are a few steps you can take to try to get it removed faster. But be aware: theyre unlikely to work:

  • Check all of your credit reports to see where the negative item appears.
  • Determine whether the account is legitimate if its not, you might be able to get it removed from your reports.
  • Choose your plan of action. You have three choices dispute the account , contact the collection agency for a goodwill adjustment , or simply wait for the account to be removed from your reports in due time.
  • Acknowledge that you may not be able to remove a legitimate collection from your credit reports.

Submit A Credit Dispute Letter

Youll want to write a detailed dispute letter that outlines all the inaccuracies you have found.

You will send this letter to the credit bureaus asking them to correct the inaccuracies or remove the negative information altogether.

The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act requires credit bureaus to report only accurate information on your credit report.

Many times the credit bureaus cant verify each detail about the negative entry, so it has to be removed.

You will have to send the same dispute letter to all three major credit bureaus Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion if the negative information appears on all three of your credit reports.

If this sounds overwhelming, you might want to reach out to a credit expert. It costs some money but is far less expensive than you might think considering you are getting your own lawyer to fight on your behalf.

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