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When Collections Accounts are Removed from Credit Report

Dear Experian,

If you have a derogatory record on your credit report from a collection agency and you pay off the debt in full, will the debt be taken off of your report sooner? Or do you still have to wait the seven years?

– MSK

Dear MSK,

A credit report is a history of your accounts and your payments. Therefore, an account with a status of collection remains on your credit report for seven years from the original delinquency date. The original delinquency date is the date the account first became late, after which it was never again brought current.

When you pay off the account, the status will be updated to show that it is paid in full, or that it is a “Paid Collection.” Although it is not removed, a collection account that has been paid is usually viewed slightly more positively by lenders than if the debt was still outstanding.

Thanks for asking.
The “Ask Experian” team

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