Lenders typically report late payments to credit reporting agencies if you are 30 days or more past due. Late payments can seriously harm your credit rating. Financial Web says a single 90-day late payment can be almost as bad as a bankruptcy. Sometimes you can get late payments off a credit report. If not, they can stick around for up to seven years.
Fix Late Payment Report Errors
Check your credit report regularly. Inaccurate late payment information can find its way onto a credit history. You can access your credit record at each major credit reporting agency once a year for free through the Federal Trade Commission's authorized provider, AnnualCreditReport.com. The Fair Credit Reporting Act gives consumers the right to have inaccurate information corrected. If you see a late payment that is incorrect, contact the credit reporting agency and file a dispute. The FCRA requires credit reporting agencies to delete or correct errors.
Ask for Goodwill
If a late payment is valid, you can't get it off your credit report by yourself, but you might be able to convince the creditor to remove it. Contact the creditor and ask for the late payment to be taken off your credit report. Businesses want to promote goodwill, especially if your overall payment history is good. Offer to make an arrangement to get caught up if you are still behind on payments.