Are negative accounts required to stay on my credit for 7 to 10 years?

There is a statute of limitations on negative items reporting to your credit. But , the law doesn’t call for a minimum  length of time that a negative account must remain  on your credit report.  The credit reporting agencies can remove information well before the statute of limitations if they choose to. Creditors will often tell you that they can’t  remove negative accounts from your credit report and say the credit bureaus simply won’t permit such action. But this isn’t true , I’ve often seen creditors make arrangements with the credit reporting agencies to have accounts removed in exchange for payments.

If you take no action and wait for items to fall of after the statute of limitations, that typically doesn’t happen. Creditors are notorious for selling your accounts to other creditors and the new debt collector will report the account as a new account although it might have already been on your credit report for 6 years. So don’t count on time being on your side and just waiting it out.

According to Experian, here is a brief list displayed on their website, which shows the most common types of information found on a credit report and when it will be deleted

  • Late payments remain seven years from the original delinquency date. A single late payment is deleted at seven years. If there was a series of late payments (not paid at 30 days, or 60 days, or 90 days) and then brought current, the payments would be deleted seven years from the first one missed in the series. If the account was never brought current and charged off and placed for collection, the entire account will be deleted based on the date the account became late and was never again current. This is known as the original delinquency date.
  • Collection accounts remain seven years from the original delinquency date of the original account. Collection accounts are treated as a continuation of the original debt and are deleted at the same time.
  • Chapter 13 bankruptcy is deleted seven years from the filing date because at least a portion of the debt is repaid. Chapter 7 bankruptcy remains 10 years from the filing date because none of the debt is repaid.
  • Civil judgments remain seven years from the filing debt. A civil judgment is essentially a debt you owe through the court.
  • Unpaid tax liens remain 10 years from the filing date. Once paid, the lien will remain seven years from the paid date.
  • Inquiries: remain two years from the inquiry date. However, the impact of inquiries on credit scores is minimal and decreases rapidly.

Experience says that you should take note that, except for tax liens, making a payment or any other activity on a negative account will not impact these rules.

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