It can only take one missed payment on your car loan, credit card, or phone bill to harm your credit score and wind up on a debt collector like Northland Group’s list.
Since your payment history constitutes 35% of your credit profile, and the longer a debt goes unpaid, the more damage it does, having a debt collection agency account can be devastating to your score.
Fortunately, an entry from a debt collector is one of the most easily reversible marks, as long as you know how to confront them.
If you’re ready to stop Northland’s calls and see a quick boost in your score as reported by the three credit reporting agencies, keep reading for a few strategies to get the collections account removed from your credit report altogether.
What Is Northland Group?
Before you consider making a payment to a company, it’s essential to know who they are, making sure it is not a scam.
If you’ve gone up against Northland Group Inc before, you might be questioning whether or not it’s legit.
A Minneapolis based agency, Northland Group, Inc., is a certified national debt collector. While they aren’t a household name, they collect for some well-known service providers. Here’s a little more information, including their contact information.
Founded in 2006, the agency operates out of Edina, Minnesota, at the following address:
- 7831 Glenroy Road, Suite 250
Bloomington, MN 55438 (Glenroy Rd is an approved substitute as well)
- Phone number is (425) 585-7573
- Website: www.northlandgroup.com
- Based on recent posts, there are 451 complaints filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (or CFPB).
- Typically the BBB.org keeps complaints over the past three years, but Northland Group is not currently accredited with the Better Business Bureau.
Today Northland Group Collection has merged with Radius Global Solutions LLC, so you could see that name on your credit report as well.
Northland Group collects for businesses in a few industries focusing on accounts receivable management, such as:
- Automotive loans
- Credit cards
- Student loans
- Telecommunication and utilities
Northland works for LVNV Funding, LLC., collecting on debts that the company buys.
3 Ways to Remove Northland Group from Your Credit Report
As a general disclaimer, the information in this article should not serve as legal advice. Please seek legal counsel with a law firm or law office should your situation warrant it.
Dealing with Northland Group’s frequent calls and letters can be a headache, but the three steps below could provide you with a quick solution to all your collections problems.
This review can also be helpful if you’re asking yourself, “Could Northland Group actually sue me or bring a default judgment against me?” After all, attorney fees and court costs can grow rapidly.
1. Ask Northland Group for Evidence of the Debt
The first step you should take to have a collections account deleted from your report is always to ask for validation.
Under the FDCPA, a debt collector is legally required to show you evidence that the debts they’re attempting to collect are legit.
They also have to follow certain “best practices” such as not contacting family or co-workers about your debts, following the statute of limitations, or use vulgar and intimidating language.
All you have to do is mail them a debt validation letter within 30 days of their first contact, asking them for validation.
This strategy could be successful even if you do actually owe them a debt.
Since Northland isn’t the original provider of your loan or services, sometimes the documentation can get lost in the shuffle.
If the collection agency cannot verify your debt in a timely manner, it should be omitted from your report promptly.
You should see an improvement to your credit score and stop getting calls from the agency within a month.
2. Negotiate a Pay-for-delete Agreement
Sometimes debt collectors are able to validate your debt. Whether that’s the case, or you missed the 30-day window to dispute your claim, you still have options to get Northland off your credit report and out of your life.
Your next best bet is to seek what’s known as a “pay-for-delete” agreement.
As its name suggests, this strategy involves paying the agency to have their collections entry deleted from your report.
Here’s the deal: Simply paying a debt collector whatever amount you owe them may stop their calls, but it won’t do your credit report any good.
Instead, you need to get them to consent, in writing, to report your payment to the credit bureaus and have the entry deleted completely.
Otherwise, it will keep hurting your score for seven years.
The best part of a pay-for-delete agreement is that you can probably get the collections agency to agree to a payment that’s only a portion of what you owe.
Try negotiating to pay 50% of what you owe Northland to see the best results.
Once an agreement has been reached, in writing, you should see Northland Group deleted from your credit report quickly.
If it’s still there after 30 days’ time, contact Northland to move the process along.
3. Hire a Credit Repair Service
While you can certainly DIY your way through credit repair, it can sometimes be a tiresome task.
If you have a complicated credit situation, with liens, bankruptcies, or several debts in collections, you don’t have to face them alone.
Credit repair companies offer reasonably priced services often free case evaluations to help you get your score on track.
Even if your credit issues have a simple fix, a credit repair service can perform a case review, saving you from having to call and write to a collections agency.
They’ll handle it all, from disputing your debt to negotiating a settlement, all while ensuring debt collectors don’t infringe on your rights under the FDCPA.
Just be aware, prior results do not always guarantee the same results in your particular case.
Our list of recommended credit repair companies is affordable, highly rated, and results-driven.
Whether you want to hire one of these companies or confront Northland Group on your own, you can improve your score in no time.
How Does Northland Group Work?
Companies like LVNV Funding specialize in purchasing debts from lenders and service providers.
After a debt has gone unpaid for a month or longer, your service provider or creditor may sell it to a debt buyer.
These companies swoop in to purchase your debt at discounted rates, profiting when you make a payment.
Hired by LVNV, Northland may contact you by phone or mail until you settle your debt. They might even threaten to garnish your wages, depending on where you live.
Worse still, a collections account entry will be placed on your credit report, which could drop your score anywhere from a few points to hundreds depending on your debt.
A collections entry from Northland could remain on your credit report for years to come. Though its impact on your score diminishes over time, it can still do long-term damage.
Fortunately, you can remove a collections account from your report with a few simple strategies.
Dealing with Northland Group
Between its two names, Northland Group has racked up hundreds of complaints from consumers, which you can find with the Better Business Bureau and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
However, it is worth noting that Radius is BBB-accredited and holds an A+ score on the Better Business Bureau website, suggesting the company is committed to settling complaints with customers.
People contacted by Northland Group have complained about their inaccurate reporting and their inability to validate debts when requested.
When you deal with Northland Group, you should be aware of your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
This law is designed to protect consumers like you from unethical debt collection practices, limiting the hours during which a collections agency can contact you and keeping them from threatening illegal actions.
One of its biggest perks is that it allows you to choose how to communicate with Northland Group.
Whenever you have to talk to a debt collector, you should always do it in writing. That way, your agreement is clearly documented, and you’ll have all the evidence you need if there’s an issue getting the account taken off your credit report.