Most Georgia consumers who have overdraft protection at their banks know that the service comes with fees. Yes, the bank temporarily covers charges that exceed your available funds, but at a price. Some banks charge up to $35 for every transaction covered by overdraft protection. This puts a serious dent in consumer wallets, but what do checking account overdrafts do to Georgia credit scores? It depends entirely on how quickly the overdrafts are resolved.
Why Georgians should Avoid Checking Account Overdrafts
With overdraft protection, it’s easy to get an account back in good standing if funds are immediately available. However, if a Georgia consumer can’t quickly bring a negative account balance to zero or more, overdraft fees accumulate.
Typically, the credit bureaus don’t get involved with banking activity because it involves consumers spending their own money. Yet, when banks step in to cover debts through overdraft protection policies, it becomes a matter of credit use. So, if you let an over-drafted account go without paying off the transactions or fees, the debt is normally sold to a debt collection agency. At this point, a delinquency is listed on your credit report, and your credit score drops.
Georgians without overdraft protection who bounce checks may also hurt their credit scores. For example, if you write a check to cover a credit card bill, but don’t have funds in your account to cover the check, the bill goes unpaid. Accounts that remain delinquent are sold to debt collectors, and the above scenario plays out – the unpaid account goes on your credit report, and your credit score plummets.
Therefore, a good rule for all Georgia consumers to follow is: Never overdraft your checking account. Even if you have overdraft protection, you shouldn’t rely on it to make ends meet. Not only do fees make this option expensive, but it can lead to credit score damage if something prevents you from settling the account. Instead, create a realistic budget and stick to it while setting money aside for emergency expenses.
How Georgia Consumers Should Deal with Checking Account Overdrafts and Debt Collector Harassment
Every year, many Georgia consumers get into trouble with checking account overdrafts because they apparently don’t understand the rules. In fact, the problem is so common that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) took action. Worried that the sign-up forms are too confusing when it comes to overdraft fees, the Bureau created a new draft. It’s unclear whether or not banks will adopt the simplified form, but it’s apparent that changes are necessary.
It is also a well-known fact that a lot of Georgians struggle with debt collector harassment once accounts go to debt collections. In fact, complaints about debt collectors top the CFPB list of top consumer issues year after year. It’s also easy for debtors in Georgia to convince themselves that they have no rights in the face of abusive debt collectors, but they do.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) prohibits debt collectors from engaging in abusive tactics. Therefore, if you have experienced debt collector harassment and need to know how to report a harassing debt collector, help is available. Call Credit Repair Lawyers of America to connect with an FDCPA attorney who will end debt collector abuse and possible sue the offending debt collection agency for damages.
How Georgia Consumers can get Better Credit for Free
If your credit is damaged by checking account overdrafts or anything else, full credit recovery is possible. With timely payments and good credit management, Georgia consumers can repair even the worst credit scores over time. For the present, the best way to give your credit score an immediate boost is to have errors and mistakes removed from your credit reports.
If you just suspect that credit report inaccuracies are bringing down your credit score, Credit Repair Lawyers of America can provide you with a credit attorney to fix your credit reports for free. So, whether you need assistance with debt collector harassment, credit report repair, or both, give us a call.
The Free and Legal way to Get Better Credit and Peace of Mind
Don’t let errors on your credit reports bring your credit score down. At Credit Repair Lawyers of America, we’ve been cleaning up credit reports for consumers since 2008 for free. We also stop abusive debt collectors at no cost to consumers. How do we do it? All of our fees come from the defendants in settled cases. This is why our clients pay nothing for the work we do.
Let’s start the conversation about what we can do for your credit. Set up your free consultation today by calling Attorney Gary Nitzkin at (404) 591-6680 or sending him a message through our contact page.