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How Do I Get Duplicate Accounts Off My Credit Report? – Tracey

“Dear Steve,

i’ve been paying off my old debts and monitoring my credit report. i’ve noticed that the orginal debtor and the collections agency are both on the reports. it looks as if i have more debt than i do.

is there anything i can do about the duplicate reports?

Tracey”

Dear Tracey,

This is a fairly easy matter to take care of. The first thing I would do is get a consolidated credit report. If you are going to invest some time to fix this let’s just do it all at once.

There are three major credit bureaus. They each don’t report the same information. That’s why a consolidated credit report is so important. If you use the consolidated credit report link, that’s the same one I get for myself when I check it.

Next step is to look over the consolidated credit report and identify which bureau is reporting the same account twice. The one that should remain is the one that reports the current delinquency the longest. A delinquent account can’t be reported for more than 7 years and 6 months from the date it first went delinquent.

So if Bank A is reporting you went delinquent on 11-2009 and Collection Company B is reporting the same account but saying it went delinquent on 4-2010. The collection company account should be removed.

The credit report you will get online and print will have information on how to dispute any incorrect information. Some take it online, some by mail.

I’d say the entire process using the consolidated credit report will take you less than an hour to complete and a few weeks for the individual credit bureaus to receive and process your dispute. After that they will send you a new corrected credit report for free.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.




About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

4 Comments

  • Technically the collection agency can only report the account on the credit report for 7 years and 6 months from the date the account originally went delinquent. So the start date begins back with the original creditor.

  • Steve, can this be done now or does one have to wait until the debts with the collection agency are fully paid? I have two duplicate accounts also. Original creditors charged off the accounts.

  • Steve, can this be done now or does one have to wait until the debts with the collection agency are fully paid? I have two duplicate accounts also. Original creditors charged off the accounts.

    • Technically the collection agency can only report the account on the credit report for 7 years and 6 months from the date the account originally went delinquent. So the start date begins back with the original creditor.

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