It’s a situation that no one wants to be in. You’re getting phone calls and letters from a company demanding that you make payments on an old debt. You may not even remember having the debt in the first place. But one thing is clear; this company is not going anywhere.
First Financial Asset Management is one such company that may come after you for an old debt. Besides being unpleasant to deal with, they can create problems for your credit score as well. Their entry on your credit report can impact your credit score for up to seven years, even after you pay off the debt. So, what can you do?
The best way to deal with First Financial Asset Management is to remove their entry from your credit report entirely. Check out our article below to find out how you can accomplish this.
What is First Financial Asset Management?
First Financial Asset Management is a medium-sized debt collection agency that is based out of Peachtree Corners, Georgia. They were originally founded in 2010, which makes them one of the newer debt collection agencies out there. Nevertheless, they are just as legitimate as their more seasoned colleagues.
Because First Financial Asset Management is a newer company, they have significantly less complaints lodged against them than some of their competitors. However, they do not have a clean slate.
First Financial Asset Management currently has 14 complaints filed against them with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and 46 complaints filed with the Better Business Bureau (BBB.) Consumers claim that they are guilty of certain Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) infractions, including attempting to collect inaccurate debts and failing to respond to debt validation requests.
How to Remove First Financial Asset Management from Your Credit Report
Having First Financial Asset Management on your credit report is extremely damaging to your score. In fact, a collections entry can cause your credit score to drop by as much as 100 points if left unchecked. It is vital to remove the collection entry from your report to salvage your credit score.
Here are the essential steps to take to remove First Financial Asset Management from your credit report once and for all.
- Know Your Rights
- Communicate In Writing
- Send a Debt Validation Letter
- Pay for Delete Agreement
- Work with a Professional
Know Your Rights
You don’t need to be a lawyer to become aware of your rights as a consumer. Debt collectors like First Financial Asset Management take advantage of the fact that most consumers aren’t aware of how federal legislation protects their rights. That is why it is important to familiarize yourself with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA.)
The FDCPA is a federal law that prevents collection agencies from engaging in practices that harass, abuse, or misinform their customers. In essence, it preserves your dignity throughout the debt collection process and prevents debt collectors from stooping to new lows to get you to pay.
Under the FDCPA, debt collection agencies are not allowed to:
- Contact you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.
- Continue to call you after you specify that they stop
- Harass you or anyone else in regard to the debt
- Use abusive, aggressive, or profane language
- Contact your place of work
- Threaten legal action that they can’t or won’t take
- Misrepresent themselves when contacting you
- Misrepresent information regarding the debt
- Ignore a request for debt validation
If First Financial Asset Management attempts any of the above when contacting you, make note of the time and date of the interaction. If you choose to file a complaint with the CFPB, you may also be entitled to $1,000 per infraction. This would involve enlisting the services of an attorney, but it is possible to have your attorney fees covered by First Financial Asset Management if you win your settlement.
Communicate in Writing
Under the FDCPA, you have the right to request that First Financial Asset Management contact you strictly through U.S. Mail. It is important to establish this with them early in your communications with them.
Debt collectors are known to say one thing over the phone and turn around and do the exact opposite. This is because having conversations over the phone makes it difficult for one party to hold the other party accountable. Getting everything in writing holds them accountable for what they say to you, but it also prevents them from harassing you.
When First Financial Asset Management calls you, tell them calmly that you are aware of your rights under the FDCPA and would like all future communications to be through certified U.S. Mail. If they become indignant or combative, tell them that they are in violation of the FDCPA and hang up. If they continue to call you, send a cease and desist letter.
Hang on to every piece of communication that you receive from them. Keep them in a folder and keep copies of your own correspondence. This will help you refer back to important communications throughout the entry removal process.
Send a Debt Validation Letter
It is not uncommon for information to get lost when it is transferred from the original creditor to First Financial Asset Management. This means that some of the information regarding your debt may be incorrect, or the debt may not belong to you at all. That is why debt validation is incredibly important and can even get you out of paying for the debt altogether.
One of the most common pieces of advice when it comes to dealing with debt collectors is not to ignore them. This is because you have a certain period of time to validate the debt before the collection agency is not obligated to respond. It is best to send a debt validation letter within 30 days of first contact with First Financial Asset Management. If you are having trouble writing a debt validation letter, there are templates on the internet that can guide you.
When you send your debt validation, be sure to request a return receipt. This is how you can know for sure that First Financial Asset Management has received your letter. If they do not respond to your debt validation letter within 30 days, you can file a complaint with the CFPB.
Make a Pay-For-Delete Agreement
If the debt First Financial Asset Management is pursuing turns out to be yours, your final step will be to make a pay-for-delete agreement. A pay-for-delete agreement offers the debt collector payment on the debt in exchange for a collection entry deletion with all three major credit bureaus. This is how you can officially remove First Financial Asset Management from your credit report for good.
You will never hear this from the horse’s mouth, but most debt collectors are willing to settle for less than the full balance. This is because the balance is likely an inflated total of the actual debt amount. Start by offering First Financial Asset Management 50% of the total balance and negotiate from there.
Once you and First Financial Asset Management come to an agreement, get the contract in writing. This prevents them from weaseling their way out of the agreement once you start paying them. Check your credit report 30 days after you make your first payment to ensure that First Financial Asset Management has deleted their entry. If they have not, file a dispute with all three bureaus and remind First Financial Asset Management of their promise.
Seek Professional Help
If all of this seems like too much for you to handle on your own, you can reach out to one of the best credit repair companies to work with the debt collection agency on your behalf.
From our many years of experience in this field, we highly recommend Credit Saint as one of the best to help you get your credit back on track.
Dealing With First Financial Asset Management
Removing First Financial Asset Management from your credit report can help you get your credit score back on track and achieve your financial dreams.
For more tips on how to improve your credit score, be sure to check out some of our popular articles. The ability to improve your credit score starts with you.
The post How to Remove First Financial Asset Management from Your Credit Report appeared first on Better Credit Blog | Credit Help For Bad Credit.