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Can the Original Creditor and Debt Collector Report the Same Account Twice on My Credit Report? – John

“Dear Steve,

Can the original debt grantor continue to report your debt to credit bureau’s after they have turned the debt over to a collection law firm. They show one balance the debt grantor and the collection company shows a larger balance.


money narrow

Dear John,

There are a number of issues here. The first is if the collection company is just acting as an agent of the original creditor or is actually the buyer of the old debt. For the sake of this post I’m going to assume they are just a third party collection company.

Debt collectors sometimes will list the original account as a new account to the credit bureaus. This is not permitted but happens a lot.

When they do they will adjust the balance and also the date of delinquency to make it look like a new debt and then try to leverage the entry to get a payment. Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act a debt collector cannot knowingly report false information to the credit bureaus. And the Fair Credit Reporting Act does not look at this favorably as well.

There are a couple of issues to consider here as well.

  • Has the debt past the statute of limitations in your state? If so they debt collector may not be able to sue you over the debt.
  • Is the balance the debt collector is claiming even an accurate balance?

If you do not believe the debt is being reported accurately then before you acknowledge you owe the debt you should dispute it and ask to have the debt verified. For a step-by-step guide on what to do, click here.

Let me know the results of your request to dispute and validate the debt and we can take it from there.

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

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About Steve Rhode

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.
  • bweb

    From the post I am guess the original creditor sold the past due account to a collection agency agency/debt buyer. When that happens the original creditor will report the account as charge off or sold to another lender. At that time the collection agency/debt buyer will report your account as a collection item. The collection agency/debt buyer buys the account, so they have the same terms and conditions as the original creditor, so unfortunately they have the same rights to continue to charge interest as outline in those terms and conditions. That is why the collection agency balance is larger.

    • Steve Rhode

      We just won’t for certain unless we can see a consolidated credit report and there is no way to know if the balance is misreported unless the debt is disputed.

      • mexada

        I disputed the debt from the collection agency and they showed me my payment history with them what they had given to RC Willey etc. I have made a settlement agreement as I had it down from 12K to 7K , Upon final payment Account Corp will erase all items they have reported to the credit bureaus . They will pay the $4,900 I have left to RC and the rest is their collection fee . Their will be no reports from their company left on my report .I have a letter from them so stating their commitment upon payment completion. How can I get RC Willey to remove their reports after I have them paid in full ?

      • Steve Rhode

        It would have to be part of the settlement agreement or a separate agreement at the time of settlement.

      • mexada

        Good morning Steve, First thanks for all you do . Account Corp who states they are hired by RC Willey to do their collections would only negotiate their part with me. I did not ask in the negotiation if they could include that R.C. delete their input . Should I do that ? I can send you the PDF letter ,for you to review . The total I am paying is the amount left to R.C.Willey and Account Corp’s collection fees .

      • Steve Rhode

        Use one of the contact methods to reach me at

        I’d be happy to review it for you.

      • Steve Rhode

        I got the copy of the letter. It is an offer from the collection company to remove listings from “all 4 credit bureaus” when the account is paid according to the settlement.

        A couple of issues. There are only three major credit reporting bureaus. So what credit bureaus are the talking about?

        Second, this agreement seems to only apply to any listing the collection company may have made and has no bearing on the original creditor.

        Then of course there is the issue of Acctcorp of Southern Nevada agreeing to a pay to delete strategy which would violate their reporting agreement with the credit bureaus. If the credit bureaus knew they were doing this it could jeopardize their ability to report items.

        And the letter is vague as to exactly what they will delete.

      • mexada

        Where do I go from here ?

      • Steve Rhode

        You could ask the collection company to clarify or you could make the settlement as agreed as full satisfaction of the debt without an expectation to pay to delete the entry.

        It’s really not an issue of paying to delete the entry as much as it is a need to satisfy and close this old outstanding account and get back to having good credit reported about you again.

        What is the primary goal you are trying to achieve?

      • mexada

        To pay the debt that I owe and am responsible for . The second and important to reacquire the 700 + credit score I use to have before I lost my health insurance and had this problem . The whole thing started when I had lost my health insuranse ,had to go to the hospital ,bill was $30K +, My old belief was you pay the Dr. first (wrong).Anyway get the debt I owe paid and rebuild my credit

      • Steve Rhode
      • mexada

        Steve, quick Question, These comments are ,or are not going on the public site ? Second , I have for 3 months now a secured Chase card started at $500.00 . I can afford to meet the terms of the settlement and that will be done. That is the last collection company I have on my report , everything else is now paid to 0 . Is there any good approach to the 3 Collections 2 others plus the R.C.Willey to ask if they will remove their collections ?

      • Steve Rhode

        The comments you see are public. I only provide assistance in public.

        The key to rebuilding credit is to deal with the old issues and then get back to rebuilding new good credit.

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