Missing a payment can hurt your credit score and lead to some frustrating phone calls.
If you’ve been contacted by 11 Charter Communications or noticed them on your credit report, a missed payment on a Charter Spectrum account is likely the culprit.
While an unexpected debt collection call can be stressful, dealing with the problem is actually simpler than you might expect.
Read on to learn more about 11 Charter Communications and see how you can get a collections account removed from your credit report.
What Is 11 Charter Communications?
If you’ve noticed a drop in your credit score tied to a collections account from 11 Charter Communications, you might be wondering what the entry is for.
While the “11” might throw you off, 11 Charter Communications is actually Charter Communications, Inc, the popular telecom and broadband services provider we’re all familiar with.
Charter is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, and is one of the largest providers of phone, cable, and Internet services in the United States.
While Charter does most of its business under its brand name Spectrum, 11 Charter Communications is commonly the name associated with its debt collection efforts.
If you are overwhelmed by dealing with negative entries on your credit report,
we suggest you ask a professional credit repair company for help.
4 Ways to Remove 11 Charter Communications from Your Credit Report
11 Charter Communications can severely hurt your credit report as long as it stays there.
Fortunately, getting a collection agency removed from your credit report is easier than you might think with the three tips below.
1. Send 11 Charter Communications a Debt Validation Letter
If you think there’s been an error and you don’t owe Charter the money, you should certainly dispute the debt.
But even if you do owe the money, you could use a dispute to remove 11 Charter’s negative entry from your credit history.
Sometimes, companies and debt collectors can’t fully document a customer’s debt.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) requires debt collectors to provide valid proof of your debt.
Though you must submit a validation letter within 30 days of being contacted by a company.
If Charter cannot provide the validation you’re requesting, they must remove the collection from your credit report.
Whether or not you pay the money you owe is a separate issue. We’re talking only about getting the negative items removed from your credit report.
And, by the way, simply paying the debt won’t remove the negative item from your credit.
2. Opt for a Pay-for-delete Agreement
If 11 Charter Communications can document your debt, you should try to negotiate a pay-for-delete agreement.
With a pay-for-delete deal, you’d be paying the balance (or a part of the balance due) in exchange for 11 Charter removing its negative item from your credit report.
Like I said in Step 1, paying the balance, by itself, won’t cause the deletion of Charter’s negative credit information.
Paying may stop their phone calls and letters, but the collections account will remain on your credit report for several years.
A pay-for-delete agreement works because you’re leveraging your payment of the debt as a tool to fix your credit.
For this to work, you have to get the deal in writing before you pay.
You can discuss the deal over the phone if you’d like, but don’t hand over your credit card number at the end of the conversation.
Make sure you get a written record of the pay-for-delete agreement before you pay.
Not only does a pay-for-delete agreement ensure the account is removed from your report, but it could also save you money.
You can negotiate to pay a far smaller amount than you owe to settle your debts.
Once an agreement has been reached and you’ve made a payment to Charter, you should see the negative entry removed from your credit report in the next 30 days.
If the entry is still there after that time, you should write to Charter again to make sure they keep their promise. At this point, you’d be glad you have the agreement in writing.
3. Write a Goodwill Letter
If you’ve already paid off the past-due balance, you no longer have your payment to use as leverage when you ask Charter for a deletion.
But that’s OK. You can still ask 11 Charter to delete its negative items as a gesture of goodwill.
You’d do this by writing a goodwill letter to Charter. Goodwill letters work especially well when you’re still a Spectrum customer with an account in good standing.
They also work best when your late payment, missed payment, or forgotten balance is an anomaly and not part of a larger pattern.
In your letter, explain how the company’s derogatory credit marks are hurting your personal finances.
It may seem like a pipe dream, but simply asking for a favor often helps.
4. Hire a Credit Repair Company
While negotiating with 11 Charter Communications and getting them removed from your credit report on your own is certainly doable, it can be a stressful task.
If you hate the thought of picking up the phone when Charter calls or drafting debt validation letters, you have other options.
They’ll also ensure that debt collectors don’t harass you or otherwise violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
Whether a lingering phone bill is hurting your credit score or you’re dealing with more severe credit issues like foreclosure or bankruptcy, a credit repair company can be well worth the cost.
How Does 11 Charter Communications Work?
Charter Communications offers a line of competitively priced telecommunications services through a massive network across the US.
In 2016 Charter merged with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, expanding its home Internet services under the Spectrum brand.
With so many customers, Charter provides a lot of customer support.
Sometimes subscribers forget to pay their bills or leave a past due balance when they disconnect their services.
During the hassle of a move or a change in service providers, it’s easy for final payment to slip through the cracks.
When that happens, Charter can report your past due balance to all three of the major credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
The resulting negative item on your credit reports will lower your credit score.
In many cases, companies like Charter hire debt collection agencies to recover debts from their customers.
Other times, agencies purchase the debt outright for pennies on the dollar.
They then report the debt to the credit bureaus and hound debtors until an agreement is reached.
A collections account entry from 11 Charter Communications, can stay on your credit report for seven years.
This can do substantial damage to your credit score.
When a collections account has appeared on your credit report, the lender or collections agency can frequently call you and mail letters regarding your unpaid debts as well.
Dealing With 11 Charter Communications
If you’ve dealt with a phone or cable provider before, you’ve probably had some level of frustration with customer support.
Charter isn’t a stranger to criticism from customers, particularly when it comes to collecting on late payments.
Customers have filed thousands of complaints against Charter with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), where the company holds an “F” rating, and with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, CFPB.
Many of these complaints are concerned with the same issues, including:
- Faulty reporting: Sometimes inaccurate reporting is to blame for collections accounts on credit reports. Many customers report being contacted by Charter regarding debts that don’t exist.
- Debt validation: Customers also cited complaints over Charter’s failure to present proof of the debt they claimed was owed.
- Harassment: Other customers complained about Charter’s communication tactics, claiming the company harassed them over the phone to collect debts.
In light of these complaints, it’s important to learn the basics of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
This act provides you with a list of protections, limiting how and when debt collectors can contact you.
For instance, this law restricts debt collectors from calling at unreasonable hours and communicating with your employers or relatives.
It also allows you to stop a debt collector’s calls altogether, choosing to communicate only by mail instead.
In fact, you should insist on written communication which ensures your case gets documented, including the specifics of any negotiations you make with the company.
Will 11 Charter Communications Sue Me?
This is the question so many account holders ask when they first hear from a collection agency:
- Could Charter sue me to force repayment?
- Could the company garnish my wages?
The law allows debt collectors such as 11 Charter Communications to sue you in civil court.
The company would have to win the lawsuit and then petition a judge to garnish your wages as repayment for a debt.
In most cases of consumer debt, a huge company like Charter will not sue for a small amount.
But to answer the question: Yes, the company could file a lawsuit against you.
It’s more helpful, I think, to know what 11 Charter Communications can’t do. It can’t:
- Prosecute you in the criminal justice system
- Have you arrested
- Visit you in person about the bill
- Call phone numbers you’ve asked reps to stop calling
- Call you if you’ve asked for only written communication
- Talk to your employer about your debt
If 11 Charter or any other debt collector violates your rights, let the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or your state’s attorney general’s office know.