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Cattleya

Cleaning up Med Collections - SOL and HIPPA Process

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Hello - I am back after several years with some med collections and I have some questions on the process.



First, do I need to worry about SOL? If the services were delivered in State A (NY - been 3 years since I've been a resident) and I now reside permanently in State B (PA), who's SOL would apply?



Now to the Accounts:



I have opted out and old addresses are deleted. I don't have copies of the EOBs but do have a summary statement of benefits for the calendar year the services were provided in. While I proceed with the next steps in the HIPPA process, should I go ahead and request copies of the EOBs?



I have sent the WhyChat's initial dispute letter to the CRAs for between 9 and 10 medical collection accounts. The results are as follows:



EQ - 10 medical collection accounts disputed - all 10 came back as "We verified this item belongs to you."


EX - 10 medical collection accounts disputed - 7 removed; 3 came back as "This item was not changed as a result of our processing of your dispute...."


TU - 9 medical collection accounts disputed - 7 removed; 2 came back as "Verified As Accurate"



I haven't received any communication at all from the CAs and want to confirm my next steps:


  • I should send the Medical DV letter to the CAs - a letter for each CRA report the CA continues to be listed on; for TU & EX and 8 of the EQ accounts, the CA is the same for the remaining accounts, do I just list the account numbers in series in the "RE:" line?
  • These letters should be sent via PM with tracking.
  • Once I have confirmation the letters were delivered, I should send the CRA's the follow up Dispute letter via PM w/ tracking. I should include all the accounts in each letter to the CRA, correct?

Thanks in advance for the guidance!

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  • I should send the Medical DV letter to the CAs - a letter for each CRA report the CA continues to be listed on; for TU & EX and 8 of the EQaccounts, the CA is the same for the remaining accounts, do I just list the account numbers in series in the "RE:" line? Yes, you can enclose letters to the CA for each CRA they are still reporting to in one envelope. Be sure that each letter to the CA lists the accounts exactly as they appear on the report you are disputing. That way when you send the follow up dispute you will have a copy of the appropriate CRA letter and will be able to use a copy of the ONE tracking # receipt.

These letters should be sent via PM with tracking.

Once I have confirmation the letters were delivered, I should send the CRA's the follow up Dispute letter via PM w/ tracking. I should include all the accounts in each letter to the CRA, correct? Just the ones that are on THAT CRA's report

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Thank you WhyChat! I will get working on the letters and get them in the mail to the CA.

 

Quick question, in terms of Priority Mail - use the web portal for the USPS for nearly all my mail shipping - is it okay to use their Click-n-Ship feature for the PM (w/ a PM flat rate 12.5 x 9.5 envelope) or should I use a regular envelope?

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I don't know. I think it is a better idea to get some priority mail envelopes at the PO ( or sent to you) some priority mail stamps -- and MOST IMPORTANTLY a packet of the priority mail USPS tracking # /customer receipts.. You can likely have them sent to you along with the envelopes and stamps. That way you will have the PM # to put into the letters.

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UPDATE

  • I sent the Medical DV letters to the three CAs reporting medical collections on 07/19/2017 - all of which were delivered on 7/21/2017.
  • I then set the follow up dispute letter to the CRAs on 07/24/2017- all of which were delivered on 07/26/2017

I got back yesterday, from a week out of town and in the mail was a response from one of the CAs reporting to EQ. In the envelope was:

  • A form letter response advising me they are listing the TL as disputed.
  • My original Medical DV letter to them
  • A photocopied 2-page faxed statement from the Original Provider. Page 1 shows my name, address at the time, insurance at the time (Bc/BS). Interestingly, the CA is listed under "Secondary Insurance". Page 2 is an accounting statement with 37.12 that was not paid by insurance, DoS shows 122112, again it shows BC/BS as primary and the CA as secondary insurance. It lists out the payments from the Insurance company and the balanced owed. The FAX header is not complete, but I am positive that the header is NOT from 2017 - looking at the partial font that shows from the header, it looks to be 2013 or 2015.

Based on what the CA sent, it doesn't look like there is a current relationship with the Original Provider, correct? I am in the process of contacting the ins. co for a copy of the EOB - what other steps should I take for this CA & TL?

 

Thanks :)

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Wait for the response from the follow up disputes.

 

I believe you are correct that there is NO current relationship between the CA and the OC. The assertion that a CA can be an Insurance Co is, IMO a violation of the FDCPA

 

If your follow up dispute does not get you a deletion from all reports then you should file a complaint with the CFPB and include a copy of this documentation with their improper and illegal claim to be a secondary insurance. And yes, get your EOMBs

 

https://www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint/

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Interim Update -

 

TU removed the two accounts that were reporting on that report! :yahoo:

 

Now waiting to see what happens with EQ/EX. Only CA to respond to the medical DV so far is the one I mentioned above. Keeping my fingers crossed that the other CRAs follow TU's lead!

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Update # 2 - I just got back interesting results from Experian - not sure what to think.

 

I received two reports from them today:

 

1. Report xxx-xxxx-x3 dated 8/2/17: First page starts out "To assist you with understanding yoru correction summary, we have provided additionally information that relates to items on your personal credit report. OTHER ITEMS DISPUTED ARE NOT CURRENTLY DISPLAYING ON YOUR PERSONAL CREDIT REPORT:-" There is a Dispute Results page, but none of the accounts are listed. The section with derogatory accounts is not listing the medical CA accounts either. Is this an interim status and not a real deletion of the medical CA TLs?

 

 

2. Report xxxx-xxxx-x7 dated 8/3/17: First page starts out "We were notified by one or more of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies that you recently reported to them that you believe information in your credit report is inaccurate due to fraud..." ​They have indicated they have added initial security alert to my credit file which will last for 90 days. In the report the medical CAs are not reporting in the derogatory section. Should I be worried about this?

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A fraud alert is usual-- it helps, not hurts the dispute process.

 

The results you received from Ex are REAL results, make sure you keep these records for at least 3 years.

 

Once you have results from Eq. post those results here.

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Final results - TU - removed all; EX - removed all; EQ - 1 remains. :clapping:

 

A day after receiving EQ's results, I received photo copied "statements" from the CA who handled 7 of the 10 TLs that were on EQ with a photocopied form notice stating "Please find the enclosed itemized statements that you requested from our office. You can may you check or money order payable to: CA"

 

Yesterday I received a letter from another CA who handled 2 of the 10 TLs that were on EQ which stated "Per your request, we have removed the reporting from your TU, EX and EQ credit reports..."

 

The remaining TL on EQ (the one from post #5 above) - I don't believe there is any relationship between the CA and the OC. The Date of Service makes it past SOL. I did get a summary of benefits for that visit from BCBS and the amount that is being reported by the CA is the amount owed after insurance. The visit was at a branch of a regional urgent care operation in NY state.

 

What should my next move be on this one?

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Yes WhyChat, I did both... the CA responded to the Medical DV with:

  • A form letter response advising me they are listing the TL as disputed.
  • My original Medical DV letter to them
  • A photocopied 2-page faxed statement from the Original Provider. Page 1 shows my name, address at the time, insurance at the time (Bc/BS). Interestingly, the CA is listed under "Secondary Insurance". Page 2 is an accounting statement with 37.12 that was not paid by insurance, DoS shows 122112, again it shows BC/BS as primary and the CA as secondary insurance. It lists out the payments from the Insurance company and the balanced owed. The FAX header is not complete, but I am positive that the header is NOT from 2017 - looking at the partial font that shows from the header, it looks to be 2013 or 2015

EQ responded to the follow up letter by verifying this TL with "We verified that this item belongs to you. Additional information has been provided from the original source regarding this item. If you have additional questions about this item please contact: CA". The TL is not marked as disputed as the CA's response indicated. Note - EQ did delete everything else.

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File a complaint against Eq with the CFPB

https://whychat.me/hipaaftccomp.html

 

Make sure you stress that the account was properly disputed and correctly deleted by Ex and TU but that Eq failed to properly investigate this unknown medical account and in addition has failed to properly mark the account as disputed by consumer.

 

Make sure you send a copy to Eq with a cover letter containing the suggested phrase.

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Thanks! This is what I drafted below following the guidance in the link - 1. Is it too wordy? 2. Do I need to include anything about the CA response (didn't think so)? 3. Do I need to "ask for" anything in the complaint?

 

 

I am filing this complaint against Equifax for failing to properly investigate an unknown medical collection account on my credit report and failing to properly mark the account as “disputed by consumer”.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx - I sent an initial dispute to the Equifax regarding an unknown medical collection account on my credit report.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I received a response from Equifax indicating they have verified this unknown medical collection account belongs to me and that I should contact the collection agency for additional questions.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I contacted the reporting collection agency with a dispute and request for validation of this unknown medical collection account as per Equifax’s instructions.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I sent a redispute of the unknown medical collection account to Equifax with a copy of the dispute/validation letter sent to the collection agency, along with proof of the collection agency’s receipt of the dispute.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I received a response from Equifax, again indicating this unknown medical collection account has been verified as belonging to me.

I made similar requests to TransUnion and Experian regarding this unknown medical collection account, both of which have correctly deleted this erroneous entry. Equifax’s refusal to properly investigate or properly mark the account as in dispute is a violation of the FCRA and FACTA.

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Thanks! This is what I drafted below following the guidance in the link - 1. Is it too wordy? 2. Do I need to include anything about the CA response (didn't think so)? 3. Do I need to "ask for" anything in the complaint?

 

 

I am filing this complaint against Equifax for failing to properly investigate an unknown medical collection account on my credit report and failing to properly mark the account as “disputed by consumer”.

· ​​xx/xx/xxxx - I sent an initial dispute to the Equifax regarding an unknown medical collection account on my credit report.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I received a response from Equifax indicating they have verified this unknown medical collection account belongs to me and that I should contact the collection agency for additional questions.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I contacted the reporting collection agency with a dispute and request for validation of this unknown medical collection account as per Equifax’s instructions.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I sent a redispute of the unknown medical collection account to Equifax with a copy of the dispute/validation letter sent to the collection agency, along with proof of the collection agency’s receipt of the dispute.

· ​xx/xx/xxxx – I received a response from Equifax, again indicating this unknown medical collection account has been verified as belonging to me.

I made similar requests to TransUnion and Experian regarding this unknown medical collection account, both of which have correctly deleted this erroneous entry. Equifax’s refusal to properly investigate or properly mark the account as in dispute is a violation of the FCRA and FACTA.

AOK :clapping: Don't forget to send a copy to Eq with the cover letter

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UPDATE - Equifax responded as follows to the CFPB:

 

Dear Cattleya, we received the complaint you submitted through the CFPB Portal. Equifax has reviewed the complaint and its records. Equifax is a repository of credit information which has been supplied by creditors, collection agencies and public record holders. Equifax supplies this information upon request to qualified users of this information. Once a request for verification of a disputed item(s) has been received by Equifax, each data furnisher will be contacted directly by Equifax. This process is usually accomplished by sending the request for verification electronically and may take 30 days to complete. Once researched, the data furnisher's response is returned to Equifax, who enters the information and updates the credit report if needed. Once all Data furnishers have responded to the verification requests, the consumer is sent a revised copy of their Equifax credit report. There are no disputed items listed in your CFPB complaint, however our records show that you recently contacted Equifax on XX/XX/2017 via case ********** regarding the items listed in the complaint. Reinvestigation results were sent to you on XX/XX/2017. Equifax is unable to take any further action at this time. A complimentary copy of your credit file has been mailed on 09/06/2017, please allow 7 to 10 business days for delivery. Please note that for future disputes of credit report information, you may visit www.equifax.com.

 

So what should the next steps be?

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What was your response from the CFPB?? I don't understand this line== "There are no disputed items listed in your CFPB complaint, "

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Here's the CFPB response:

 

09/07/2017

 

Hello,

 

Thank you for your complaint 1xxxxx-23xxxxx about EQUIFAX. When we received your complaint, we forwarded it to the company for response. The company has now responded. We appreciate your participation in the complaint process. The CFPB has closed your complaint.

 

In regard to your comment on the statement in EQ's response - I did not include the account level information in the CFPB complaint, just outlined the timeline of events with EQ (see post 14 for text). Should I have included the account information?

Edited by Cattleya

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Here's the CFPB response:

 

09/07/2017

 

Hello,

 

Thank you for your complaint 1xxxxx-23xxxxx about EQUIFAX. When we received your complaint, we forwarded it to the company for response. The company has now responded. We appreciate your participation in the complaint process. The CFPB has closed your complaint.

 

In regard to your comment on the statement in EQ's response - I did not include the account level information in the CFPB complaint, just outlined the timeline of events with EQ (see post 14 for text). Should I have included the account information?

Yes, of course- how else would they ( or Eq.) know what you were referring to?? It never occurred to me that someone would send the complaint without referencing the account #. I will immediately add that ( I thought obvious) data to the suggested complaint.

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My bad - I wondered about it but for whatever reason didn't ask. Should I submit a new complaint to the CFPB or wait out until I get the Credit report that EQ referenced in their response or am I pretty much stuck with it now?

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My bad - I wondered about it but for whatever reason didn't ask. Should I submit a new complaint to the CFPB or wait out until I get the Credit report that EQ referenced in their response or am I pretty much stuck with it now?

Amend your existing complaint to the CFPB They should have provided you with the link to do that.

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My bad - I wondered about it but for whatever reason didn't ask. Should I submit a new complaint to the CFPB or wait out until I get the Credit report that EQ referenced in their response or am I pretty much stuck with it now?

Amend your existing complaint to the CFPB They should have provided you with the link to do that. There is no link to amend the complaint - just one to offer feedback ("We welcome your feedback on how this complaint process worked for you. You will have 60 days from when the company responded to share your feedback. The CFPB will use your feedback to help us supervise companies, enforce laws that protect consumers, and write better rules and regulations.")

 

I did call the CFPB and they indicated the complaint could not be amended once it is closed and they advised me to call EQ directly. Alternately I could open a new complaint so long as I didn't reference the old complaint number.

 

Would it beneficial to go ahead and file a new CFPB complaint now or let it sit and restart the HIPPA process again in 90 days or so?

 

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OK, Eq is having a $hitload of problems right now. Make sure you are opted out and put a fraud alert on any other CRA which will be transmitted to your Eq account

https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0275-place-fraud-alert

and freeze your Eq account

http://www.bankrate.com/personal-finance/credit/how-to-freeze-your-credit-after-the-equifax-data-breach/

Revisit the issue in 60 days.

( the fraud alert will be shared with all the other CRAs but is only for 90 days)

The freeze on your Eq report can be lifted for necessary applications.

 

I do NOT recommend signing up for the Eq. "free credit monitoring" as it is loaded with special provisions.

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OK, Eq is having a $hitload of problems right now. Make sure you are opted out and put a fraud alert on any other CRA which will be transmitted to your Eq account

https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0275-place-fraud-alert

and freeze your Eq account

http://www.bankrate.com/personal-finance/credit/how-to-freeze-your-credit-after-the-equifax-data-breach/

Revisit the issue in 60 days.

( the fraud alert will be shared with all the other CRAs but is only for 90 days)

The freeze on your Eq report can be lifted for necessary applications.

 

I do NOT recommend signing up for the Eq. "free credit monitoring" as it is loaded with special provisions.

Thanks WhyChat! I'll work on this today. When 60 days has passed, should I start the HIPPA process over on this TL or start with another CFPB complaint?

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Start from scratch with the initial dispute. Make sure you check your Eq report via back door first as it may have disappeared in the $hitstorm of trouble they are having.

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