Did you see a sudden drop in your credit score? Are you unsure how much debt you owe and to whom? Do you know if you have any outstanding accounts? If you’re on a mission to increase your credit score, you need to know how much you owe and to whom. You need to get credit card debt information because debts make a direct impact on your credit score.
The question is how can you get the desired information?
One fine morning you might get a call from a debt collection agency regarding a debt that you aren’t aware of. What would you do in that situation? How can you find out the truth? Is it true that you owe money to the debt collection agency? How much do you owe? Who was the original creditor? There are so many questions that need to be answered. Who will answer these questions? Where can you get the credit card debt information? Let’s find out today.
Where can you get credit card debt details?
Well, there are a couple of ways of getting all the credit card debt details. Let’s talk about them one by one.
1. Credit report: You’re entitled to a free copy of your credit report once every year. Download your free online credit report from the website annualcreditreport.com. Check out all the sections in your credit report to get your detailed credit card debt information. You can get each and every detail of your open-ended and closed-ended accounts from your credit report. You will also know how much you owe and to whom. You can easily view the lender’s name, contact details, and the total balance on your account.
Check out the public record items minutely. You can find out if you have civil claim judgments or tax liens.
Once you get the contact details of the debt collector or the creditor, call him up and negotiate for a settlement.
You can call all debt collection agencies several times a day to complete the negotiation process. This won’t get reported on your credit report or affect your score. So don’t worry!
It’s best to get a copy of your credit report from all the 3 major credit bureaus – Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. This will give you complete information. Creditors are not legally obliged to report to each credit bureau. For instance, Bank of America might only report to Experian whereas Chase might only report to TransUnion.
If you owe money to Bank of America, it won’t appear on the TransUnion and Equifax credit reports. Likewise, if you owe money to Chase, then that won’t appear on the Experian and Equifax credit reports. If you wish to get a clear picture of your financial situation, then have a look at all 3 credit reports at once.
2.Credit card statements: What will you do if your creditor doesn’t report to any credit reporting agency? What if the debt doesn’t appear on your credit report? Old delinquent debts and collection accounts disappear from your credit report after 7 years (from the date of your first default). The collection account may not appear on your credit report but the collection agency can still pursue you for the debt. You’re still legally responsible for making the payments.
Check your credit card statements from the last few months or years (if possible). Have a look at the account statements. You’ll get tons of information.
Credit reports change on a monthly basis. If you make timely payments on your credit cards, then there is a great probability that the balance shown on your report is a bit out-of-date. Moreover, credit bureaus usually report balances as of your statement’s billing date, not the due date. So your last monthly payment may not appear in the total just yet.
If you wish to get a true picture, then check your total outstanding balance online.
3. Original Creditors: Account balances usually appear in your credit report. If they aren’t there or you have doubts regarding what you owe, then contact the original creditor associated with the account. You may have to do a little bit of research, specifically for an account you don’t recognize.
If you don’t have a credit card bill statement, then it might be tough to get the contact information of the creditor. However, you can get the mailing address of the creditor from his company’s website. Some credit card companies even have a separate webpage for customer service-related issues.
Wait and watch
When you don’t get any credit card debt information from the original creditor or the debt isn’t listed on your credit report, then all you can do is wait and watch. You have to wait till a debt collector contacts you. Sometimes, old debts are sold by one collection agency to another. You will need to wait until the new debt collection agency contacts you to get all the information.
If the new debt collection agency doesn’t cooperate, then you can ask them to validate the debt in writing. Under federal law, the collection agency is forced to give you the required information. You can ask the collection agency to stop contacting you if they don’t validate the debt.
Usually, debt collection agencies get a commission on the basis of the total amount collected. They will contact you regarding the assigned accounts (both old and new). This makes it easier for you to learn about debt collection accounts.
However, if you have relocated or changed your phone number recently, then it will be difficult for you to get the desired information. The debt collection agency might be calling you at your old number. In such a situation, contact the creditor instead.
If a judgment is filed against you, then it becomes a part of the public record. Likewise, if you file for bankruptcy, then that also becomes a part of the public record. Both judgment and bankruptcy appear on your credit report. You can view them in the “public records” section of your credit report. The judgment shows the plaintiff’s name along with the total amount you owe.