I paid off several debts nearly six years ago, and they're still showing on my credit report. I've read online that it takes seven years for it to be removed, starting from the date the debt went into collection. Is this correct? Some people have told me the seven year period starts on the date of your final payment. I really need to get these removed to help my credit score and I know you'd be able to offer some advice.
See my answer when you read more.
Savvy says: Nice job turning your finances around! After years of waiting to get on with your life after a little money trouble, you've almost reached the end of the rough road and it's no wonder you're feeling antsy.
When you default on payments and the account goes to collections, it's reflected on your credit report for seven years. You aren't the only one confused about when this seven year time period starts; some people are under the impression that it begins on the date the account became delinquent, some think it's when the debt was reported to the credit bureaus, while others think it starts when the debt has been repaid.
According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, as of December 29, 1997, the reporting period runs 7.5 years (7 years plus 180 days) from the date of delinquency. Here is the section from the FCRA stating the seven year time frame starts 180 days from the first missed payment.
The seven year period, shall begin, with respect to any delinquent account that is placed for collection (internally or by referral to a third party, whichever is earlier), charged to profit and loss, or subjection to any similar action, upon the expiration of the 180-day period beginning on the date of the commencement of the delinquency which immediately proceeded the collection activity, charged to profit and loss, or similar action.