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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 15, 2008:
Never send a credit account payment to Experian
May I pay a debt directly to Experian if the original creditor is no longer in business? I am in the process of paying off debt that has been transferred to another company.
Your payments should always go to the current owner of the debt. You should never send a payment to Experian. Experian is not a creditor and does not collect payments on behalf of creditors.
Experian acts as a repository for account payment histories. It collects and maintains information from your creditors about how you have paid your debts, and provides that information to your creditors in the form of a credit report that they use to help make lending decisions.
Your payment should be made to the company to which the debt was transferred. It now is the legal owner of the debt.
The original account entry in your credit report should show that it was closed or transferred. Because the company went out of business, the account might have been removed entirely.
However, the new account owner likely will report the account, which will then appear in your credit report as the open, active account.
Thanks for asking.
- The "Ask Experian" team