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    Can't find owed debt after debt collector stopped mailing.

    Hello.
    Two and half years ago I agreed to one of those JC Penney credit cards because I was a fool and didn't understand what I was getting into. A little while later I realized I was $24 in debt. I was in college, and I tried running from my problems, but that obviously doesn't work. Over the course of many months, JC Penney/Synchrony Bank tried to get me to pay up to a high of $59. The payment due stayed at that level for quite a long time, until the debt was apparently sent to a debt collector, which I also ignored.

    I stopped receiving mail from the debt collector towards the end of 2014, about a year after the original debt. Now, two and a half years later, I want to get this nagging stress off my back, but I don't know who I owe the actual $59. I read some things online that suggested I get my free credit report from the "big three", and I did so; however, they all listed the balance as $0 as of May 2015, with a note saying the debt had been purchased by another lender. The problem is I haven't heard from any new lender, and I'm assuming contacting JC Penney would be fruitless at this point, or even "re-age" the damaging report.

    My primary worry is that I am unbeknownst to me accruing some sort of monthly fee for not paying someone I don't even know. I have never received calls regarding this, from JC Penney or otherwise. Should I log onto the original JC Penney credit card account? Log on to the old debt collector "Account number" they sent me? Or just wait it out? Please advise. I'd like to get rid of this minor stress.

    #2
    Originally posted by CreamofCrab View Post
    Hello.
    Two and half years ago
    Beginning of 2014?

    I agreed to one of those JC Penney credit cards because I was a fool and didn't understand what I was getting into. A little while later I realized I was $24 in debt.
    Just to clarify... you spent $24 thousand dollars at JC Penny in just about six months?? (Not enough time for the super-high interest rate to kill you.)

    I was in college, and I tried running from my problems, but that obviously doesn't work. Over the course of many months, JC Penney/Synchrony Bank tried to get me to pay up to a high of $59.
    More clarification: $59/month? (Which is quite low, based on the size of the debt.)

    Or $59 thousand dollars?

    I stopped receiving mail from the debt collector towards the end of 2014, about a year after the original debt. Now, two and a half years later
    It's only one and a half years since the end of 2014.

    I want to get this nagging stress off my back, but I don't know who I owe the actual $59. ... My primary worry is that I am unbeknownst to me accruing some sort of monthly fee for not paying someone I don't even know. I have never received calls regarding this, from JC Penney or otherwise. Should I log onto the original JC Penney credit card account? Log on to the old debt collector "Account number" they sent me?
    Yes. Talk to a lawyer first, since talking to the debt collector might restart a bad debt clock on your credit report.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Nutria View Post
      Beginning of 2014?



      Just to clarify... you spent $24 thousand dollars at JC Penny in just about six months?? (Not enough time for the super-high interest rate to kill you.)



      More clarification: $59/month? (Which is quite low, based on the size of the debt.)

      Or $59 thousand dollars?


      It's only one and a half years since the end of 2014.



      Yes. Talk to a lawyer first, since talking to the debt collector might restart a bad debt clock on your credit report.
      I'm actually only talking about 24.00 dollars, as in one hat from JC Penney. From what I gathered from letters JC Penney sent me, interest accumulated from the $24 principal until it maxed out at $59 dollars due total. I know it is absurd that I didn't pay this off, but like I said, I was stressed out and also a fool. The item was purchased at the end of 2013. Can the debt collector use "logging on to check debt" as a valid excuse for restarting a bad debt clock? For what it's worth, I pay my student loans on time with no missed payments.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by CreamofCrab View Post
        I'm actually only talking about 24.00 dollars, as in one hat from JC Penney. From what I gathered from letters JC Penney sent me, interest accumulated from the $24 principal until it maxed out at $59 dollars due total. I know it is absurd that I didn't pay this off, but like I said, I was stressed out and also a fool.
        It happens...

        Can the debt collector use "logging on to check debt" as a valid excuse for restarting a bad debt clock? For what it's worth, I pay my student loans on time with no missed payments.
        I'm pretty sure they can. I'm also betting that they wrote off this small debt as not worth the effort to try and expend any more resources on.

        As for hidden fees: did you change phone number, or give them any other reason why they would be able to justify losing contact with you?

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Nutria View Post
          It happens...



          I'm pretty sure they can. I'm also betting that they wrote off this small debt as not worth the effort to try and expend any more resources on.

          As for hidden fees: did you change phone number, or give them any other reason why they would be able to justify losing contact with you?
          The credit report did say 'Written off', though I assume that meant it had only been transferred to another agency, as was mentioned in the report notes. It is odd that the balance read $0 on all three reports. From what I've read so far, it didn't seem like these things disappear, despite the small sum.

          From my perspective, what's done is done in regard to letting it get to collections. I will have to live with the adverse credit score for awhile. But, I am concerned about "hidden fees" or even interest being charged on the $59 that went to collections. I did not change my phone number, in fact they never contacted me via phone in the first place. As for my address, it has changed a number of times, but they have definitely sent mail to the latest one (during 2014 at least before they stopped), and the credit reports seemed to even know ones from my past (which was a little creepy), so it doesn't seem like finding me would be an issue. Thank you, kind person.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by CreamofCrab View Post
            The credit report did say 'Written off', though I assume that meant it had only been transferred to another agency, as was mentioned in the report notes. It is odd that the balance read $0 on all three reports. From what I've read so far, it didn't seem like these things disappear, despite the small sum.

            From my perspective, what's done is done in regard to letting it get to collections. I will have to live with the adverse credit score for awhile. But, I am concerned about "hidden fees" or even interest being charged on the $59 that went to collections. I did not change my phone number, in fact they never contacted me via phone in the first place. As for my address, it has changed a number of times, but they have definitely sent mail to the latest one (during 2014 at least before they stopped), and the credit reports seemed to even know ones from my past (which was a little creepy), so it doesn't seem like finding me would be an issue. Thank you, kind person.
            I think I'd let it drop. If they ever do come after you wanting, for example, $3,000 then just fight it if the scenario ever occurs.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by CreamofCrab View Post
              and the credit reports seemed to even know ones from my past (which was a little creepy)
              They retain everything... Like the NSA is supposed to do, but doesn't.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by CreamofCrab View Post
                Hello.
                Two and half years ago I agreed to one of those JC Penney credit cards because I was a fool and didn't understand what I was getting into. A little while later I realized I was $24 in debt. I was in college, and I tried running from my problems, but that obviously doesn't work.
                So you purchased something for $24 with the card and didn't understand you would get billed for it?

                And you viewed a $24 debt as a problem you had to run from?

                Comment


                  #9
                  I see your trying to do the right thing here. Also don't be discouraged people here can be super harsh sometimes.

                  Call JC Penny or try to log onto the account to see what the deal is. Don't get any more credit cards through stores. It's really easy to forget about them. I have a Lowe's card but I only use it for big purchases to get the discount. Otherwise I'd easily forget about it.

                  Comment

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