How do I get a late payment removed from a credit report?
From writing a letter of goodwill to finding the right person to help you, here are eight answers to the question, “How have you successfully gotten a late payment removed from a credit report?”
- Write a Letter of Goodwill
- Explain It Was Due to Hardship Like Hospitalization or a Natural Disaster
- Set up Automatic Payments
- Provide Documentation for Previous Timely Payments
- Dispute the Late Payment
- Investigate All Three of Your Credit Reports
- Partner With a Credit Repair Company
- Find the Right Person Who Can Help You
Write a Letter of Goodwill
Generally, the only way to remove a late payment is when you believe it’s been inaccurately applied to your account. If so, you can file a dispute with the credit agency to have it removed. However, if the report turns out to be accurate, you can try writing a letter of goodwill instead. A letter of goodwill is simply a letter to the creditor requesting them to remove your late payment out of goodwill. In the letter, you’ll need to state your valid reason for why you had a late payment. Also, be polite and promise that it won’t happen again.
If the creditor decides that your reason is valid, then they’ll forgive the late payment and you can contact the credit agency to adjust your credit report. I have personally done this when I was 25 years old. I was on a trip outside the country and one of my payments defaulted because the gateway I was previously using became unavailable without notice. Hence, I told the creditor about it and after three days they forgave my late payment.
Explain It Was Due to Hardship Like Hospitalization or a Natural Disaster
If you’ve experienced a hardship, such as hospitalization or a natural disaster, and have missed making payments on time, there are measures you can take to have late payments removed from your credit report. Gather records of your payment behavior prior to the hardship, such as lease agreements, bank statements, receipts, and notices from creditors, proving that you had been paying regularly before the hardship occurred.
Review these credit reports for any errors that could be driving your score down. Then, either contact your creditor directly to discuss a settlement or dispute any incorrect information with one of the major credit bureaus, such as Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion. Staying mindful of this throughout the process is essential to ensure you successfully get a late payment removed from a credit report.
Set up Automatic Payments
I just had to answer this because I know you’ll get a lot of false information on how to get a late payment removed. The reality is that if the payment is truly late (not just an error in the reporting), your creditor is legally obliged to report the late payment to the credit bureau. There isn’t much that can be done about this other than being proactive. Unsurprisingly, setting up automatic payments is a great way to avoid a late payment.
If you anticipate that you won’t be able to pay a bill on time, reach out to your creditor right away and ask for a deferred payment. This will usually buy you some extra time to make the payment, or they will add it to your next billing cycle. I wouldn’t make this a habit, but it always looks better to be proactive and communicative than trying to fix it after the fact. As soon as you notice a late payment, reach out to your creditor anyway—if it hasn’t been reported, you may have the opportunity to make the payment before they report!
Provide Documentation for Previous Timely Payments
If you wait too long, the late payment may already be impacting your score. If you want it removed, you’ll need to dispute it. I sent a letter disputing the late payment, along with a copy of my most recent statement showing the negative mark on my credit. Since the payment was late, they informed me that I should begin the dispute process within 30 days of the mark hitting my credit report. I had documentation showing that I didn’t make the payment late, and I presented all the documentation within the time limit. Bringing those two factors together will give you a good shot at removing the late payment.
Dispute the Late Payment
The first step is to dispute the late payment with one of the three major credit reporting bureaus—Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. If the dispute is successful, the late payment will be removed from your credit report. If the dispute is unsuccessful, you can move on to the next step.
In the event you were unsuccessful, the next step you should take is to contact the creditor and ask for a goodwill adjustment. This involves asking them to remove the late payment from your credit report as a show of good faith. Be sure to explain your current financial situation and why you were unable to pay the bill on time. If they agree, the late payment will be removed from your credit report.
Investigate All Three of Your Credit Reports
Start by looking at all three of your credit files to see if there are any discrepancies if you think you may have an improper delinquency. You should make a note of the lender, account number, payment date, amount, and other information when you check for late payments.
Partner With a Credit Repair Company
Late payments might remain on your credit record for up to seven years, affecting your credit ratings. Late payments have the most impact when they initially show, and you may improve your credit while you wait for late payments to be removed from your credit reports. I, for one, used to have many problems with late payments.
Still, I was told to contact an expert on credit repair to assist me, so I started gathering information and looking for aid, and then I came across Solution Hub; the person I worked with helped me a great deal, and he really cared about my situation. My credit improved after working with the credit repair company for a time, and it’s currently at its best, thanks to repairing and minding my late payments.
Find the Right Person Who Can Help You
If your account is still active with the creditor, one of the strategies you can apply is to request/plead for a deletion of the late payment. A few years ago, I had a late payment on my Capital One credit card up to 90 days due to personal family circumstances, which was dragging my credit score significantly. Since my credit card was active with Capital One, I called the representatives and they told me “nothing could be done” about it.
Since I couldn’t just take “No” for an answer, I researched online and found the Head of Credit Department person’s email. I sent them an email directly explaining my situation and how it was affecting me during my home purchase process. It was definitely a Hail Mary, but it worked! I suggest that if you have late payments on your credit card, don’t close your card, speak to the lender and find the appropriate person in charge. You can then make an earnest plea explaining your situation and how the late payment is personally affecting you.
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