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deeptomyogurt

How to handle medical bill collections with stubborn credit bureau

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I recently had 4 small medical bills totaling $1000 go to collections, which has begun to slowly decrease my credit score.

After some research, I figured that my options were (in order of most to least prudent):

  • A. Call the collection agency (the local debt bureau) to whom this debt has been assigned and ask for verification writing. Negotiate paying a fraction of it as a lump sum for a paid-for-deletion if possible. Report the remainder as income to the IRS for next year's taxes.
  • B. Call the medical provider and negotiate a discounted payment. Some say I could pay as little as 2/3 of the original bill total.
  • C. Ignore the debt, as it's already hit my credit. I'm in CA with a statute of limitations of 4 years for debts.

———

I tried B, calling the medical providers, who referred me to communicate and pay through the credit bureau who my debt is assigned to.

I tried A, calling the credit bureau, who says they don't offer deletions or settlements, suggesting my only option through them is to pay in full. I asked for verification of the debts in writing.

———

Questions:

  • Should I believe the credit bureau when they say they don't do deletions or settlements? If not, what language should I use to negotiate?
  • Is it significantly better for my long-term credit to pay in full? I don't plan on buying anything in the next 4 years that require financing, but I'd rather not wreck my 730 score if possible. It won't be hard for me to pay in full, but if it will effectively make no difference, I'll avoid it.
  • Acknowledging that this is my dilemma alone, what would you recommend I pursue next?

Thank you!

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Follow the guides;

https://whychat.me/GUIDEBOOK.html

 

https://whychat.me/GUIDE HIPAA PROGRAM.html

 

Send each CRA where these OR ANY medical accounts are reporting this;

https://whychat.me/hipaadisp.html

 

If you had insurance at the time get your EOMBs ( explanation of medical benefits) from your insurance Co and try to match the collections with your EOMBs to see if there is ANY validity to the claims.

I am assuming from your post that these collections are at least 2 years old?? ( date of medical services). If they are over 4 years old then don't bother with getting your EOMB's as they are certainly the product of JDBs

It is more than likely that your reports have been "poisoned" by a JDB ( junk debt buyer) who obtained the information on the accounts from a data miner and not from the OC health care provider. Have you recently applied for a mortgage?? That is when your credit data is SOLD to data miners if you hadn't opted out.

 

Come back to this post with your results from following the above instructions or if you need further assistance.

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23 hours ago, Why Chat said:

Follow the guides;

https://whychat.me/GUIDEBOOK.html

 

https://whychat.me/GUIDE HIPAA PROGRAM.html

 

Send each CRA where these OR ANY medical accounts are reporting this;

https://whychat.me/hipaadisp.html

 

If you had insurance at the time get your EOMBs ( explanation of medical benefits) from your insurance Co and try to match the collections with your EOMBs to see if there is ANY validity to the claims.

I am assuming from your post that these collections are at least 2 years old?? ( date of medical services). If they are over 4 years old then don't bother with getting your EOMB's as they are certainly the product of JDBs

It is more than likely that your reports have been "poisoned" by a JDB ( junk debt buyer) who obtained the information on the accounts from a data miner and not from the OC health care provider. Have you recently applied for a mortgage?? That is when your credit data is SOLD to data miners if you hadn't opted out.

 

Come back to this post with your results from following the above instructions or if you need further assistance.

@Why Chat

@why 

  • Yes, I had insurance at the time.
  • Yes, I've checked with my insurance on each claim and they are valid.
  • These collections are 1 year old, and the 180 period before they were reported to credit has now passed. I noticed my credit rating drop a few points last month.
  • I don't believe a junk debt buyer is involved; I'm dealing directly with my credit bureau who was asssigned the debt. They didn't buy it.

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Credit bureaus have nothing to do with the collection of debts.  They report data furnished by their subscribers.  As relates to the collection process, there are collection agencies which work on a contingency basis but do not own the paper- it is retained by the original creditor.  Then there are the purchasers, often referred to by some as junk debt buyers.  At that point, the original creditor is out of the equation and you are dealing with the JDB and/or any third-party collection agency they place the paper with for collection purposes...

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11 minutes ago, centex said:

Credit bureaus have nothing to do with the collection of debts.  They report data furnished by their subscribers.  As relates to the collection process, there are collection agencies which work on a contingency basis but do not own the paper- it is retained by the original creditor.  Then there are the purchasers, often referred to by some as junk debt buyers.  At that point, the original creditor is out of the equation and you are dealing with the JDB and/or any third-party collection agency they place the paper with for collection purposes...

@centex Are you saying there's someone I should be negotiating with other than the credit bureau? They're the only entity who's been in contact with me other than the medical providers. When I call the medical providers at this point, they refer me to my contact at the credit bureau.

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You are confused.

Medical providers are not allowed to report directly to the credit reporting agencies.

Your account is being reported by a CA ( collection agency) who obtained the account EITHER directly from the medical provider or from some other source such as another CA or from a data miner.

 

I believe that the OC medical provider in your case DID NOT assign your account to the CA that is reporting, which is why they told you to contact the "credit bureau". Which credit bureau did they tell you to contact?? Or are you confusing the term "credit bureau" with collection agency.

 

If the medical provider is telling you to contact a collection agency which has the name "bureau" in it's name, that is what is causing the confusion. The 3 credit BUREAUS are Equifax, Experian and Trans Union.

 

Follow the guides 

https://whychat.me/GUIDEBOOK.html

 

https://whychat.me/GUIDE HIPAA PROGRAM.html

 

Send each CRA where these OR ANY medical accounts are reporting this;

https://whychat.me/hipaadisp.html

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