No, you have bought into an old urban myth. Unless you have offered to pay 100% of the debt owed, plus interest and any legal fees, you still owe the debt. Furthermore, even when you pay off the debt, it will not remove it from your credit report but will only say that a delinquent debt has now been paid. A credit report is a history of how you have used credit and the history remains open for a long long time. Hope this perspective helps!
I can't add anything to the advice given to you by Ms. Bunce. She is, as usual, absolutely correct.
I often take cases other attorneys won't, so call me for a free consultation. My number is 727-712-3333, or you can view my website at www.TampaConsumerLawyer.com
You probably have to tender payment but you may also want to try and get the trade line removed as part of a resolution. Also, if it is disputed (I have represented a lot of individuals who thought the repossession was kosher but upon analysis by me, I was able to defeat a deficiency and get some money in the client's pocket), you may want to ensure you do not receive a 1099-c from the creditor if you settle for less than full balance. A 1099-c is given for discharge of an indebtedness and the IRS starts with the premise that the amounts therein should be included in your income for that fiscal year. Perhaps this is some starting language your attorney could use in negotiations:
Creditor and debt collector agree to accept $X,XXX in full settlement of this matter if payment is delivered within ten (10) days of the date this settlement is approved in writing and faxed to Good Consumer. Creditor and debt collector further agrees (a) not to issue a Form 1099-C to Good Consumer due to the nature of the dispute or for alleged discharge of indebtedness based on the nature of the dispute, (b) close its file, (c) within 25 days of the settlement check clearing its account, to request the deletion of its trade line to the three major credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian and Trans Union and any other credit bureau if notice is given to Creditor and/or debt collector that the trade line is being reported. Creditor and debt collector will furnish to Good Consumer a copy of the Automated Universal Data ("AUD") form submitted to the referenced credit bureaus requesting deletion. Creditor and debt collector in no way guarantees the conduct of the credit bureaus. Further, there is no understanding or agreement of any kind for any further or future consideration whatsoever, either implied and/or expected.
I always recommend a signed written agreement when you are dealing with a debt collector or creditor. I wish you the best in the future. To learn more about repossessions, you can go to my website and review an old article I wrote: http://fortheconsumer.com/article-repossessions.htm
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