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How to Dispute Your Unpaid Bill

Updated on February 24, 2010

Disclaimers: This is solely my experience which I share with you. It is not intented to be as a legal advice.

I have to say that I never would worry about not having a good credit score. I pay my bills on time. All my accounts are revolving. I pay my balance every month. I have many credit cards. Some of them I seldom use like the department stores’. So what happened was I went shopping a few months ago because I needed to pick up a baby gift for my co-worker. I was at Macy’s to be exact. I went up to the cash register and proceeded to pay. The associate informed me that if I used their credit card, I would save ten or fifteen percent which I don’t remember now. Nevertheless, I didn’t bring my card. She told me that she could look it up with my social security number. I said, " Okay.". To my surprise, it was not found. I thought, well, maybe because of their name change from Famous Barr to Macy’s could cause the confusion. She then tried to open an account for me with my permission. I was just shocked to hear that it was denied.

I went home, was dumbfounded. I was just curious to see what happened with my credit report. I ran the free one that everyone can get online. Wow! It stated that on my report that my Macy’s account was delinquent. Can’t be true! I followed the instruction of how to dispute the questionable item. I called the toll free number, was informed that the bill went to my old address and went unpaid. I explained to the representative that when I moved, I went into the store and changed my address with the associate. Apparently, she did not change that, not my fault! Remind you that this bill was probably from three years ago. I cannot honestly tell you if I paid it or not. I would have no bank the record from three years ago when the internet was not as common. I was given another number to appear to be a collection agency. She then transferred me to the agency. The guy who answered the phone by just saying hello in a way that I caught him by surprise or something. Anyway, he then asked me for my full social security number. I refused to give it to him simply because the way he answered the phone. It gave me an uneasy feelings. So, I asked for a supervisor, he just rudely hung up. I called back to the first toll free number again, was given a fax number to send in the request to dispute. I did it right the way. I am the type of person that it will bother me until I take care of it.

A good few weeks went by, I finally received a generic letter acknowledge of my letter of dispute. They needed to investigate. Legally, they have to reply within three months. I got a letter stated that if I pay $ 29.85, they would reinstate my account. They removed the late fee. It sounds like small potatoes. Most people would pay for it and get on with their lives. Not me! I felt that it was their mistake and they should apologize and welcome me to be their customer again. I wrote to them again to let them know that it was the principal of it that I refused to pay for their mistakes. Now you didn’t know that I used to work for them as a Loss Prevention Agent when they first opened in town. How humiliating to even think of I would not pay my bills! I shopped there so often that I know everyone by name.

You would think that being a company with good customer service, will say forget about that and move on. Well, to my surprise again, I received a letter stating that their decision stands. I do not agree with it and have to take my business somewhere else.

I totally put this behind me. Last night, someone called me again from another collection agency.

At first, I was not sure what they wanted. Then the representative said something about the Macy’s account and asked me to pay $59. I explained to her that I already tried to dispute that with Macy’s but they stood on their decision. The representative then got a supervisor, Tracy, on the line. I once again have to tell my story for the tenth times. She started to say that if I don’t pay, the phone calls will continue. I informed her, " No, it will not because I can report you too. Once I told you not to call me, you better not call me again!". To remind everyone that I have not change my cell number for the past few years. If they can call me and harass me, why can’t they at least call me when my bill was returned to them because I moved? After all these years, they called me trying to get my money but they cannot call me when I missed a payment.

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