How to write a goodwill letter to remove missed/late payment

By Steve Johnson, Publisher,

Quite some time back, I wrote an article which delved into the topic of goodwill letters. It remains a big concern to readers. So I thought I’d re-visit that subject to underscore the importance of learning how to write a goodwill letter that very possibly can help you remove derogatory marks lurking in your credit report owing to missed or late payments to creditors.

Goodwill Letters – How a Late Credit Card Payment Can Be Removed With a Goodwill Adjustment Letter

A goodwill letter — or as it is sometimes called, a “goodwill adjustment letter” — is one good, simple solution you can use to make an official, heartfelt request of your creditor to remove a negative listing from your credit report to fix bad credit.

This type of letter differs from a letter to dispute late payments or to dispute billing mistakes. Further, a goodwill letter has a completely different purpose from a credit dispute letter.

A goodwill letter allows you to accept the blame for late payments on credit cards, while appealing to the creditor for financial mercy.

When sending a goodwill letter your goal is to touch on major points like:

  • Letting them know you are sorry for the late payment, and stay away from confrontational, threatening language. You missed the payment. They didn’t.
  • Telling them how much you appreciate their past business, and how you look forward to remaining a long-term customer in the future.
  • Briefly explaining specifics of what happened to cause the late payment: mention your job loss, personal illness, moving to new state and no bank account, you usually pay with online but internet access was down that day due to icy weather, local tornado or flooding cut off roads to post office. Don’t make it up. Just state the facts.
  • Referencing positive steps you’ve now undertaken to prevent such a late payment from happening again in the future. They’ll want to know that this is a one-time request. They don’t want this to be a regular occurrence.
  • Highlighting the fact that you are now current on all your bills, and point out that you caught up on late payment immediately even if it was a true financial hardship to do so.
  • Pleading for help tactfully. Suggest that your late payment NOT be reported to the credit reporting agencies as a gesture of goodwill on their part, owing to the fat that you have been a good customer over the years. Ask them to put yourself in your shoes.
  • Being direct with your request for them forgiving the late fees by having them wiped from your credit report. Negative credit will do little to improve credit scores. Remove late payments and your credit score will climb.

Keep in mind that businesses are in business to keep their customers satisfied. If they can help you, they should. If you have been a good customer, and you are only asking for a one-time goodwill adjustment, most business managers will react favorably because it will be in their own self-interest to help you keep your credit rating in good standing.

In summary, a goodwill adjustment letter could be your very best way to remove a negative listing from your credit report and forge a strong bond with your creditor in the future.

Have an opinion you’d like to share with us? Give us your feedback and thoughts on using a goodwill letter to improve your credit score by emailing us at:

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