How do I file on someone's credit report?

I’ve got a now ex-customer that owes me a small amount of money that isn’t really worth the time to go to small claims court over.

So, I’m wanting to report this to the credit reporting agencies. How do I go about doing this?

The easiest way is to contact an agency that specializes in this. There are companies that handle bad debt and just charge a % to collect. They are usually local, might want to ask around in your area or do some web searches.

If you’re going to mess up someone’s credit report, why isn’t it worth going to Small Claims Court?

Thank for the idea. I might just look at doing that locally.

This guy was a real jerk. I have a no-compete contract with him and he tried to go around me, plus he cussed me out over the phone.

I wasn’t going to worry about the $25 he owes me, but after all that I think I’d like to at least open collections against him.

It’s the least I can do for a nice guy like this!

contact the BBB

mmm, I never thought about the BBB.
Good suggestion. Thanks.

They won’t and can’t do didly poo.

For $25 I wouldn’t recommend doing anything but once he chewed you out over the phone I would say bring him down!

Collection agencies won’t touch a case for $25. It’s not worth their time. But if you offer to pay them they will put a pock mark on his credit rating.

Taking to small claims court is a good idea. Because you’ll win, get your money, and put a pock mark on his credit if he doesn’t pay you (unpaid judgements do show up on credit reports).

Small claims will cost at least $25 though, so make sure you get him to pay the legal fees too if you win.

It may be hard to get any debt to show on the credit report unless you have a binding agreement to show the debt (i.e. signed invoice, agreement, etc) or a judgment.

Once you have that, just contact the 3 main credit reporting agencies and go about filing the debt with them - it’s a differant process for each agency and is/can be a nightmare to do. Basically you will have to send them the documented proof and full identifiers on the guy (which usually means: name, address & SSN).
If you have an account with the credit agencies (which most credit suppliers do), it’s alot easier and they take you on your word to add the info to the credit reports and just ask for proof when the individual disputes it.

I have a contract with him for him to be a reseller for my company.

And, I have all his personal financial information when he signed up for direct deposit of his residual income.

It may just be easiest to file on him in small claims court and get a judgement for the $25, plus all the court costs and costs involved with my time associated with the filing.

I can see that $25 turning in $400 or $500 real quick. And when I win the judgement because he’ll probably not even respond, it’ll go on his credit profile.

I know there are principles involved but you’re really going through this much trouble for $25? Just turn his account off and put up a “Account Suspended” page on all his sites.

I don’t know what you get an hour (or charge) but in 30 minutes of time spent worrying about that I would have lost more thinking about it than the original $25. Especially if you consider going down to the local courthouse, filing a complaint, showing up in court, waiting a few hours, etc.

Is it really worth it?

I’m in the Atm business and do a little web design and hosting on the side. This isn’t a webhosting issue, it an atm issue.

And, yes I was planning on blowing this off. But, after he cussed me out on the phone the other day, I have no problem spending some time and money to get a judgement against him in small claims court.

It’s the least I can do for a low life like this. Besides, it’s really no problem. I’ll file, make sure he’s notified, he won’t respond, and I’ll win by default. It’ll be easy.

I’ve got all kind of documentation and I have a witness concerning his owing me the $25. It’s more about the principle than it is the money because I could care less about the $25. I spend more than that on dinner when I eat out!

“I’ll win by default. It’ll be easy.”

The people I know who are frequently in court on collections issues NEVER display this kind of attitude about the process. They can tell story after story of cases where they had everything going for them and the judge ruled for the other party.

What if the other guy does show up, and you get a judge who is annoyed you are wasting his time over pocket change? What if the case is dismissed and the guy counter sues claiming the adverse publicity from your suit cost him a large contract?

I think the potential downside is orders of magnitude greater than $25.

I wouldn’t suggest putting an “Account Suspended” page on his website because it is illegal unless you have a written contract that explicitly states the content of that page. I’ve been threatened with a lawsuit for putting up the detault “Account Suspended” page on an account for one hour. I was able to get him not to sue me by giving him another 90 days to pay and then I’d involve a collection agency. Still waiting for that money…

That’s what a terms and conditions page are for… they can always transfer their domain name elsewhere. If they don’t pay for the account on the server it’s the owner’s choice what to do with it… I don’t see anything illegal about an account suspension notice.

its called public slander. If you in any way talk in a negative way about a business (regardless if it is true or not) then they can sue you. If you do suspend it, make sure there is no way a visitor would know why (change it to “this site is temporarily unavailable. Please check back soon”)

Yes, but if you clearly state that in your tems and conditions and they agree to them prior to signing up there’s really not much they can do.

And my suspended page simply says “Account Suspended. Please contact customer support at the number below immediately.”

It doesn’t say why or anything…

I work with a company which has spent well over $100,000 defending itself against a class action lawsuit. The law requires customers to be notified if repossessed property is going to be sold at auction. The letter they were sent said “may be sold at auction”. The suit, with potential triple damages, contends the letter should have said “will be sold at auction.” Since the suit concerns a technical violation of the law it does not matter if any customer ever lost a dime.

Nothing like political correctness. People are such crybabies these days.

If I screwed up and owe some money because I didn’t pay attention, then I have to pay. I can’t honestly go out and sue someone when the whole situation was my fault to begin with.

I wish I was the judge on that case. I wouldn’t even allow that argument in the court room.

Well, I gotta agree with Beley here. $25 is hardly something worth going to court over even if you do win the case and get your basic court costs covered. How much is your time worth and how many hours or days could this thing drag on for??

I say put your bruised ego aside and forget about this jerk and go on to find some more business for yourself. Besides the money issues, holding a grudge and being angry at him because he cursed you out is only going to hurt you more in the long run.