Like other debts you acquire, late child support payments will negatively affect your credit history. Even if you make the appropriate payments and get current, that negative mark will remain on your credit.
Once they are included, they can remain for up to seven consecutive years. However, if you have paid all your debts and the account still appears on your credit file, you may be able to file a dispute with the credit bureaus to request an update.
How is your credit affected by child support delinquencies?
Child support will modify your credit only when you are significantly delinquent, and the agency is notified of the problem. Conversely, if you have never been late on your child support account, there will be no trace of it on your credit report.
When you fall behind in your payments, the entities in charge of receiving them can immediately notify the different credit bureaus. They will include information on the history.
Once it is there, even if you make the necessary payments, it will not be eliminated. It works the same as when you are delinquent on your credit card or loans; the information stays on file for up to seven years.
How do I remove paid child support from my credit history?
You cannot remove the information on your credit report. However, if you have made child support payments and still appear on the report as delinquent, you can dispute the information as an error.
Sometimes credit bureaus do not collect and track some payments and do not notify the appropriate bureaus. To file a dispute, you must meet certain requirements:
You must have proof that you paid the bill
You cannot contact the appropriate agencies without having adequate proof that you made the payments on time. Gather all the payment receipts you have and submit them as proof.
If you do not keep these receipts, you will need to contact the agency where you make your child support payments and request copies of the receipts.
Make the formal filing of the dispute with the credit bureaus
Once you have the necessary documents to make a claim, you can begin to dispute the delinquent account. It is essential to notify the three major credit bureaus and raise the situation similarly.
The process can be done through the online sites of each account, by calling the contact numbers found on their web pages, or by mail. The recommendation is to communicate it in writing so that you have a copy that you made a claim.
Usually, the agencies will have 30 days to make the corresponding investigations and send a written statement of the decisions made. The agency will send a copy of the updated credit report if the dispute is approved.
A good recommendation might be Equifax, whose contact is 1-888-Equifax (1-888-378-4329). Their customer service is available from 9 AM to 9 PM.
What do I do if the dispute is not approved?
If the agency does not consider the dispute actionable and decides to let the debt stand, you will have to wait seven years for it to clear automatically. It takes seven years for any delinquency to disappear from your report.
The recommendation is to avoid falling behind in the payment of child support. When there are financial problems and you cannot make the full payment, you should contribute at least part of the payment to prevent the agencies in charge from starting to apply sanctions against you.