So you’ve found a debt on your credit report from National Credit Solutions
What to Expect
If you see that NCS has reported something to your credit report this means that the account has been overdue for an extended amount of time and the original creditor has transferred your uncollected debt to National Credit Solutions for collection.
You may or may not have been contacted by the original creditor for attempts to receive payment before they handed over the account to a 3rd party collections agency. It is frustrating to find something on your credit without warning however once the account is handed down to a collections agency they have the right to report it to the Credit Bureau without notification (With the exceptions of 3 states). NCS is a certified and licensed collections agency and works continuously to stay in compliance with the changing state laws. They are also rated A+ with the BBB.
If your debt is not paid and the open collection appears on your credit report you might experience drastic changes in your credit score. A low credit score has many disadvantages including its affect on job eligibility, high interest rates, high insurance premiums, and difficulty acquiring loans or purchasing a house or car among other things.
NCS contacts the credit bureau ever Friday for updates. Many other agencies contact the credit bureau every month making any updates and clearing your credit a much slower and strenuous process. After NCS receives contact from you or contacts you personally, 5 days from this initial contact you will receive a letter stating your rights and the amount owed. If they do not hear back from you it is assumed that you have received the notice.
After receiving this first notification from NCS you have 30 days to send in a formal written request for validation. After these 30 days NCS is not legally obligated to send you a validation but may or may not as a common courtesy.
What are your options?
It is very important to resolve any issues with collections agencies in order to avoid increasing fees and most importantly to maintain a good credit score. Some people might say don’t pay, reporting to your credit is just a bullying tactic. This is bad advice because the longer you wait to pay your debt or if you do not pay it at all it only hurts you, your credit score, and costs more in the long run. In extreme cases your credit card may be cancelled, you may be refused a loan or unable to make any serious purchases.
Full payment, payment plan, settlement
There is a difference in each of these options and how it affects your credit report. Also keep in mind that the quicker you resolve your debts with the agency the better -- as the account sits in the system it accumulates interest fees and becomes more and more expensive with time. Stay calm and make an informed decision, but do not blow your payment off. This only costs you more in the long run.
Sometimes time is an issue. Payment in full is the quickest solution and fully restores your credit.
National Credit Solutions offers various payment plans over extended periods of time based on how much you are financially able to pay. This process takes longer to clear your credit but eventually does. They can set up automatic withdrawals according to the payment plan you have established.
On a case by case basis NCS may or may not qualify you for a hardship settlement after assessing your situation and financial standing. Different factors affect our ability to settle such as ownership of the account and what kind of account it is. If you choose this option your credit report will show that you settled for less than the legal amount owed. They can not guarantee to what degree your credit will improve however a paid or settled account is much better than an unpaid account.
Contact thier office by phone for the quickest response to any questions.
Best way of paying
They accept payments over the phone or by mail, from checking, savings, credit or debit cards, mail orders, or cashiers checks. (Discover, Visa, MasterCard only) They will encourage you to pay over the phone. This is beacuse lots of people say they will mail in payments but never do. Paying by phone is safe and a lot faster. Paying by mail can interfere with payment in full...( due to the amount the check was made out to verses the new total with the additional fees that accumulated in the few days that your payment was in the mail.)
They really will work with you and it is in thier best interest as well to close out the account.
After I pay how long will it take to get it off my credit?
NCS reports to the Credit Bureau with any updates to your credit every Friday. This ensures quicker updates than many other agencies out there. All that NCS can do however is notify the Credit Bureau and after that it is their obligation to make any changes as they see fit. The time that it takes to see any immediate results or removal varies.
Procedures: Request verification, cease and desist, dispute
Requesting a validation
If you do not remember the alleged transaction that has incurred debt under your name or you do not trust the agencies allegations you may formally request a validation. It is important that you send in a WRITTEN request that very clearly states your demand for verification. If you request validation over the phone you may hear from collectors that the agency is not obligated by law to give you validation unless they receive a written request. This is frustrating but it is the law. It is also important to save any documents you receive including any validation documents. The agency will have all interactions carefully document and once they have sent you one validation they will not send you subsequent copies.
When the agency receives your written request they have 30 days to respond with a validation letter. Validation includes an itemized statement of your transaction, contact information of the original creditor, and your last known billing address. Keep in mind a company such as National Credit Solutions handles over 3.5 million accounts. Employees at NCS are on the phone working with consumers up to 12 hours a day trying to resolve each case to best of their abilities. They are more than willing to send consumers validation documents in order to secure good faith and ensure a payment suitable for each individual but this process takes time. Once you receive validation this means that the debt is in fact under your name and the agency that you are dealing with has legal authority to collect the debt.
Cease and Desist vs. Dispute
Cease and Desist is a formally written request. Be advised, cease and desist does not make debt go away. Requesting cease and desist will simply terminate any written or verbal communication towards you from NCS employees. NCS respects these requests completely and without any exceptions. However, the debt will still show up on the consumers credit report, the account is still open, and the individual is still held accountable for the debt.
If you are disputing the debt it is best to file your dispute through Transunion.com or experian.com, or mail it directly to NCS addressed to Blake Taylor for the quickest response.
IF YOU ARE FILING A DISPUTE KEEP IN MIND:
1.) After a dispute is received by NCS they commence an investigation that can take up to 30 days
2.) You must provide proof
If you feel that this debt is not yours and you have legitimate proof to clear the account from your name then you should file a dispute. After NCS receives a dispute an investigation is taken up that lasts 30 days. After this 30 day period NCS has 30 days to contact you. This process takes time. They won't close out an account if you simply state that the debt is not yours and provide no proof. If for example you are disputing the debt on the grounds of identity theft you must provide a police report and the identity theft affidavit for that relevant period of time when the debt occurred, or if you were overseas at the time of a transaction that took place in the US send in proper documents.
How do I know this is a legitimate agency?
You know that an agency is legitimate and not a scam if they are willing to provide you with validation (after a written request) and if they are able to use credit reporting in conjunction with the Credit Bureau. Credit reporting capabilities are not available to everyone, a business goes through a lot in order to be able to report to your credit.
Contacting the original creditor
In most cases the original creditor does not have your account anymore and therefore they are not able to pull up your information. They will often refer you back to NCS and may be hard to get through to. However if you do receive notification from an original creditor that your account is able to be closed obtain a written statement personally and send it directly to the NCS office.
Filing a complaint
The easiest and quickest way for your complaint to be heard and the best way to warrant a response is by filing your complaint at http://www.acainternational.org/.
Professionals will investigate your complaint and respond back to you as quickly as possible.