Do you have a question about consumer credit? You may find an immediate answer by using the search engine. If you can't find what you're looking for, please fill out the form, being as specific as possible.
Please note: The Ask Experian team cannot respond to each question individually. However, if your question is of interest to a wide audience of consumers, the Experian team will include it in a future column.
The information contained in this column if for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. You should consult your own attorney or seek specific advice from a legal professional regarding your particular situation.
Please understand that Experian policies change over time. Column responses reflect Experian policy at the time of writing. While maintained for your information, archived responses may not reflect current Experian policy.
Topics addressed on October 3, 2007:
Original account and collection account will both be on a credit report
Is it legal for the original creditor and the collection agency to both show on my credit report?
Not only is it legal, it is exactly what should happen to accurately show the history of the debt.
Your credit report represents a history of your credit accounts. That history begins with the original account and its payment history. If it is sent to collections, the account continues with the agency or agencies that then own the account.
Each entry, beginning with the original account will show a status for that entry. The original account will show that it became late, eventually was charged off as a loss and then was sold or sent to collections. The status of the account entry will change through its life on your credit report.
It will begin as current, never late. Eventually, that status typically will go through 30, 60, 90 and 120 days late, and then will change to charged off and sold to collections. “Charged off” and “sold to collections” are both considered a final status. A final status shows that the account is no longer active, but it appears on the credit report as part of the complete history of the debt.
A new collection account will then be added to your credit history. It will show that the debt was bought or transferred from the original account holder. Its status will show that it is now the active account for the debt. If the debt is sold again to another collection agency, the status of the first collection account will be changed to show that it was sold or transferred. Again, that final status shows that the first collection account is no longer active, but it will continue to appear as part of the account’s history.
All of the accounts – the original account and any subsequent collection accounts – will be deleted at the same time, which is seven years from the original delinquency date. That date is the first time the original account was reported as late, and after which is was never again current.
Thanks for asking.
- The "Ask Experian" team