Sample Debt Validation Letter
If you’re reading this I’m guessing you have a bill that’s gone into Verizon Collections.
Before reading any further into this post you’ll need to find out whether this account is already on your credit report.
If you haven’t already done so, pull a current copy of your credit report and check it out.
If your credit report doesn’t include a Verizon Collections account, you can keep the account out of your credit history by paying the bill ASAP.
You should still be able to pay in your My Verizon or My Fios app if you want to clear up the matter as quickly as possible.
Once Verizon Wireless reports your delinquent account to the credit bureaus, it’s difficult (but not impossible) to remove the negative entry.
If your credit report already shows Verizon Collections, keep reading to find out how to stop this company from hurting your credit score.
How To Get Verizon Collections Off Your Credit Report
Here are the steps to remove Verizon Collections from your credit report. These steps can also stop this debt collector from contacting you.
- Verify That Verizon Is Handling The Collection
- Request A Goodwill Adjustment
- Offer To Pay For The Collection To Be Removed
- Have A Credit Professional Remove The Verizon Collection
Verify That Verizon Is Handling The Collection
Just because your Verizon Wireless account has gone into collections doesn’t mean Verizon itself is handling your account anymore.
Verizon has an internal collections department for past-due balances, but at some point, it tends to sell the old debt to third-party collections agencies.
This distinction is important because it’ll help determine your best actions to remove the account from your credit history.
You can find out who’s handling your debt by looking at your credit report.
Verizon will be listed as the creditor if the company hasn’t sold your old debt. A collection agency will appear as the creditor if it has.
The following steps to remove the collection from your credit report will depend some on the owner of the debt, so keep this in mind as you consider your next steps.
Request A Goodwill Adjustment From Verizon’s Collections Department
If Verizon still manages your account and you’d like late payments, collections notices, or other negative items removed from your account, you should contact the Verizon collections department and ask for a goodwill adjustment.
To request a goodwill adjustment, you’ll need to write a goodwill letter explaining why you couldn’t pay your bill on time. If you lost a job or if you got sick and couldn’t catch up on the outstanding balance, let Verizon know.
Don’t make excuses but accept responsibility, and share a few details about your personal finances to make your goodwill letter unique. Let the company know you don’t typically fall behind or make late payments, for example.
Make sure you also ask for what you need: Removal of the collections account from your credit report out of goodwill.
I know this sounds like a long shot, but it actually works quite often as long as the bill has been paid in full. If the bill hasn’t been paid, continue on to the next step.
Offer a Pay-for-Delete Agreement
This step works best if the collection has been sold to a third-party collection agency but it could also work with the Verizon Wireless collections department.
Also, this step works only if you haven’t paid for the collection yet.
In this step, you’ll want to offer to pay the debt in full if Verizon (or the collections agency) agrees to remove the negative items from your credit report.
This works only if you get the deal in writing first. An email is good enough, but I prefer a letter in the mail.
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This technique works amazingly well because it leverages the best card in your hand — payment to the creditor.
This works best with third-party collection agencies because their only source of income is payments from account holders.
Verizon Collections itself may not react as positively to your negotiation tactics, but if you find the right person in the right job this may still work even if Verizon manages your account.
Get Professional Credit Repair Help
When your goodwill letter and your offer to pay your balance in exchange for the deletion of negative information from your credit report, you may want to call in the pros.
For this, I suggest you check out Lexington Law. This credit repair company specializes in removing old collections accounts from your credit.
Lexington Law has several payment plans, but customers tend to average $80 to $100 a month for a few months while Lex Law’s team of attorneys works the case.
If you are interested in this kind of service, check out Lexington Law’s website.
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How Can My Verizon Account Hurt My Credit Score?
Most utility service providers do not report your ongoing payment history to the three credit bureaus. So why would Verizon, a cellphone and home Internet provider, be different?
It’s different only if you have a past due balance and your account goes into collections. That’s when your account tends to appear in your credit history.
A collections account will hurt your credit score. If you have excellent credit before the collections account appears in your credit history, your score could decrease by about 100 points.
Removing collection accounts from Verizon Wireless or Verizon Fios from your credit history can restore your credit score quickly.
What If Verizon Collections Appears By Mistake?
If you’ve gotten phone calls or letters from Verizon Collections and you’ve never had a Verizon account before, you could have inaccurate negative items in your credit history.
Inaccurate credit reporting happens more often than you may think. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act gives you the right to dispute inaccurate items.
First, you should send a debt validation letter. In the letter, demand that Verizon prove you owe the money. If the company can’t document your debt, it’ll have to remove its negative information from your credit history.
After you send your letter, follow up by checking your credit reports with all three credit bureaus — TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian — to make sure the negative information has been deleted.
You can get free copies of your credit reports at annualcreditreport.com. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, you can get a free credit report every week at this site through April of 2021.
Verizon Collections May Have Been Hired
It’s also possible you’re seeing Verizon Collections on your credit report because another service provider has hired Verizon to collect its old debt from you.
In this case, Verizon Collections would be serving as a third-party collection agency. You can still send a debt validation letter if you don’t think you owe the money.
If you do owe a past-due balance to a creditor that has hired Verizon Collections to collect your debt, you should consider a pay-for-deletion agreement. I described that process above.
In its role as a third-party debt collector, Verizon Collections should be more inclined to accept a pay-for-deletion agreement which would remove the account from your credit report.
Knowing Your Rights When Dealing With Debt Collectors
Whether it’s Verizon Collections or another debt collector, you shouldn’t deal with a collections agency unless you’re familiar with your consumer rights.
For example, Verizon Collections cannot:
- Call on a phone number you’ve asked the company to stop using.
- Call if you’ve asked to be contacted only by writing.
- Call at unusual hours or while you’re at work.
- Call your friends or family members about your debt.
- Threaten you with criminal action.
- Threaten to affect your other existing credit accounts such as credit cards.
If a debt collector violates your rights, let the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau know.
How Collection Agencies Work