John – My question is; I want to pay off some old debts in full. I would like to do “pay for removal.” Should I call them and say I am willing to pay off the debt but they must send me on a letter on company letterhead that spells out they will remove the debt from all three major credit-reporting agencies, or can I send them a letter?

Answer – Be careful when talking “pay for delete” with lenders and collection agencies. It’s tempting for collectors to offer pay for delete structures but then not actually honor them. And, the credit bureaus may not honor the arrangement even if they send a letter asking for the removal of the negative credit reporting. Normally the credit bureaus frown on the pay for delete agreements. Normally the only reason an item would be removed from a credit report is if it’s incorrect or cannot be verified.