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hishamzz

Financial Recoveries - Debt Collecting off Medical Bills

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Hi WhyChat,

 

I happened to bounce onto this forum whilst skimming through medical bills and need your assistance.

 

In a bit of situation for which I am not sure what approach I am to take Smiley Sad

 

(1) Wife had to undergo some medical procedures in 2018 and that resulting in some medical bills

(2) I had missed a month of payment after negotiating a payment plan with the hospital unfortunately and it had gone through to debt collections

(3) Reached out to the Financial Recoveries (debt collectors) and negotiatied another payment plan unknowingly to me that inspite of doing so that they would report it on my wife's credit report

(4) Checked my wife's credit report this month and I see the collections records listed in her profile

(5) Called Financial Recoveries and they were not helpful with my request to remove the records off my wife's credit report upon payment. They say that once its settled, it would be marked as closed and it would eventually 'fall' off

(5) Called the hospital and asked them if they could claw back the debt so that I could pay it off with them and they could have Financial Recoveries pull it off my credit report. They had mentioned that I could pay the debt to either the hospital or the debt collectors but they have no control over the credit report issue.

 

I am at loss right now as to what approach I should take to remove those derogatory remarks from her report and would appreciate any advise. I read that goodwill letter 'might' work after complete payment but there is no certainty of that.

 

One thought that ran through is that if i were to pay the complete amount to the hospital they technically Financial Recoveries would have nothing to claim and they maybe 'bound' to remove those remarks? 

 

Any advice is highly appreciated!

 

Hisham

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Follow the guides;

https://whychat.me/GUIDEBOOK.html

 

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

 

Send the initial dispute letter to the CRAs listing ALL medical accounts as they appear on the report you are disputing.

https://whychat.me/hipaadisp.html

 

Meanwhile, gather your EOMBs ( explanation of medical benefits) from your insurance and the receipts or account records of what you have paid. Once you have determined EXACTLY how much you legitimately owe to the hospital AND once you have documentation that the reporting CA is in a CURRENT business relationship with the OC hospital you can pay the hospital the legitimate balance due with the HIPAA letter insert "A".

https://whychat.me/hipltr.html

 

If you have any questions or need further instructions post them in THIS post.

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1 hour ago, Why Chat said:

Follow the guides;

https://whychat.me/GUIDEBOOK.html

 

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

 

Send the initial dispute letter to the CRAs listing ALL medical accounts as they appear on the report you are disputing.

https://whychat.me/hipaadisp.html

 

Meanwhile, gather your EOMBs ( explanation of medical benefits) from your insurance and the receipts or account records of what you have paid. Once you have determined EXACTLY how much you legitimately owe to the hospital AND once you have documentation that the reporting CA is in a CURRENT business relationship with the OC hospital you can pay the hospital the legitimate balance due with the HIPAA letter insert "A".

https://whychat.me/hipltr.html

 

If you have any questions or need further instructions post them in THIS post.

Thank you for your response WhyChat!

 

Based on your response, are you assuming that the hospital had reported to the credit agency? In my case, it is an actual debt collector to whom the debt had been given over by the hospital.

 

I have been paying the debt collectors a monthly amount and I am aware of what balance I have with the debt collectors at this point. What shows on my wife's credit report (TU) are just the remaining bills. Should i reach out to the hospital and ask them for what balance is available and request them for a letter with that balance? And then go through with sending that HIPAA letter? 

 

Appreciate your time!


Hisham

 

 

 

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OK, no the "debt collector"/ca WAS the hospital's agent but it is likely you paid most or all of what was due (check your EOMB) and your records

 

Follow the guides as indicated but do NOT request a balance from the debt collector or communicate with them any further.

It is POSSIBLE that your dispute letter to the CRAs will get you a deletion. If not AND you are able to get an immediate response from the reporting CA to your initial dispute to the CRAs you can pay the hospital with the HIPAA letter insert "a" and estimate your balance due from your own records.

 

Did you SIGN a payment agreement with the debt collector/ca?? 

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1 hour ago, Why Chat said:

OK, no the "debt collector"/ca WAS the hospital's agent but it is likely you paid most or all of what was due (check your EOMB) and your records

 

Follow the guides as indicated but do NOT request a balance from the debt collector or communicate with them any further.

It is POSSIBLE that your dispute letter to the CRAs will get you a deletion. If not AND you are able to get an immediate response from the reporting CA to your initial dispute to the CRAs you can pay the hospital with the HIPAA letter insert "a" and estimate your balance due from your own records.

 

Did you SIGN a payment agreement with the debt collector/ca?? 

I do know the balance due to the debt collector as I have been keeping track of what the balance was and what i have been paying. And my last call to them couple of days to plead the removal of those credit report remarks verified the amount I owe from my end.

 

Based on your response :-

(1) Send dispute letter to the Credit Reporting Agencies (CRA) on which the remarks are appearing

(2) If dispute letter does not result in deletion I ought to be getting an immediate response from the debt collector (CA)

(3) Pay the hospital directly with HIPAA letter (with 'a' section) and balance due from my records

 

I did not sign any agreement with the debt collector (CA). It was merely a verbal confirmation of a payment plan.

 

I had a look at the sample letter for CRA dispute. Currently I am using CreditKarma to show me the derogatory remarks and it does not list any account number as such. It merely shows the current creditor, original creditor, amount, when opened, account status etc. Is the account number something I should obtain by retrieving the credit reports from annualcreditreports?

 

Thanks for your responses. It is helping me frame a course of action because I make any payments and mess up my wife's credit.

 

Hisham

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I got the credit reports off annualcreditreports and I see the account numbers listed. It seems that its listed on both Experian and TransUnion CRAs at this point.

 

Hisham

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7 hours ago, hishamzz said:

I got the credit reports off annualcreditreports and I see the account numbers listed. It seems that its listed on both Experian and TransUnion CRAs at this point.

 

Hisham

Make sure you opt out before doing anything else. You will need a copy of your REAL reports when you send your disputeletter to each CRA as you need to include a copy of the report with the subject account circled in red.

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16 hours ago, Why Chat said:

Make sure you opt out before doing anything else. You will need a copy of your REAL reports when you send your disputeletter to each CRA as you need to include a copy of the report with the subject account circled in red.

By opt out I believe you are referring to --> https://www.optoutprescreen.com/ ?

 

Would I have to notify the hospital too that I am opting out too or would the above site would take care of all sharing? Read this from the following article --> https://www.creditrepairpublishing.com/article/credit-repair-how-to-use-hippa-privacy-rules-to-have-medical-bills-removed-from-your-credit-report/

 

Another question I have WhyChat, the FORM LETTER TO ORIGINAL HEALTH CARE PROVIDER which you have on your site is address to the HIPAA Compliance Offer. My question would be the address I would have to send it to. Should I send it to the address on the billing statement from the hospital? The address on the billing statement i had received has a PO BOX address and not the hospital address at which the services were performed. I know I am not at this step but just wanted to know for clarification.

 

Hisham

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Opting out ONLY covers credit reporting agencies. You can NOT negate your signing a HIPAA release form every time you receive medical services.

 

The address for the form letter to the OC health care provider should go to their street address which you should easily be able to look up on line.

 

The article you referenced ( from 2010) likely references MY HIPAA letter program.

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Hi WhyChat,

 

Have a query which is actually confusing me quite a bit. Am not very familiar with how the information on the credit report works and thus need your insights.

 

There were around 10+ bills which were sent over by the debt collector and I have been paying bill by bill each month.

Now what is showing in the credit reports are just the three remaining bills which I have to pay

 

 

So my question or confusion is as to whether the debt collector is removing those collection entries after payment of each bill. I cannot seem to 'backdate' the credit reports to see what it reflects at a certain point of time.

 

The placed for collection date/date opened shows as May 1st 2019 on both TU and EX CRA reports for the remaining 3 bills. Could that mean that the debt collector had included ALL the bills initially and has been removed them upon payment?

 

Hisham

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It is hard to tell exactly what is occurring on your reports as the "debt collector" for the hospital most likely stopped collection  activities after 6 Months which is the usual time period for such a payment arrangement. The OC "debt collector" assigned agent for the hospital would not have been  reporting at all.

 

The date of May 1, 2019 is the date the CA acquired the account which would have been at least 6 Months after the date of medical services.You should have by now checked your EOMBs to make sure about the dates of service and what the balance due actually was.

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Hi WhyChat,

 

A petty question but since I would want to do things by the letter, need clarification on.


The following is what you had listed on sending priority mails :-

Go to the PO and get a dozen flat rate priority mail envelopes (6X10 is the easiest to use)
You can either buy them prepaid with the postage ($7.35) or buy the priority mail stamps separately.
Get a stack (they come in a book) of FREE USPS tracking forms.
Whenever you send a letter, affix your copy of each receipt to the hard copy of the letter you have sent.
You will, of course, be entering that PM tracking # in the heading of each letter.
What do you mean by affixing your copy of each receipt to the hard copy of the letter you have sent? And the PM tracking# you would want me to write it on top of the envelope? Generally we receive the receipt and the tracking number from the post office after handing over the envelope with the letter within to the post office yes? 

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9 hours ago, hishamzz said:

Hi WhyChat,

 

A petty question but since I would want to do things by the letter, need clarification on.


The following is what you had listed on sending priority mails :-

Go to the PO and get a dozen flat rate priority mail envelopes (6X10 is the easiest to use)
You can either buy them prepaid with the postage ($7.35) or buy the priority mail stamps separately.
Get a stack (they come in a book) of FREE USPS tracking forms.
Whenever you send a letter, affix your copy of each receipt to the hard copy of the letter you have sent.
You will, of course, be entering that PM tracking # in the heading of each letter.
What do you mean by affixing your copy of each receipt to the hard copy of the letter you have sent?I suggest you keep a file with "hard=paper "copies of everything you are sending outAnd the PM tracking# you would want me to write it on top of the envelope? Generally we receive the receipt and the tracking number from the post office after handing over the envelope with the letter within to the post office yes? The purpose of getting the tracking # forms either from the PO or on line from the PO BEFORE sending any letter is so that you can include the tracking # in the body of the letter
Go to the PO and get a dozen flat rate priority mail envelopes (6X10 is the easiest to use)
You can either buy them prepaid with the postage ($7.35) or buy the priority mail stamps separately.
Get a stack (they come in a book) of FREE USPS tracking forms.
Whenever you send a letter, affix your copy of each receipt to the hard copy of the letter you have sent.
You will, of course, be entering that PM tracking # in the heading of each letter.
You can also print a priority mail label on line with a USPO account. Make sure you do NOT add signature requirements. You can fit the label on a 6x10 envelpe by folding under the bottom.

 

Edited by Why Chat

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On 11/22/2019 at 10:42 PM, hishamzz said:

I do know the balance due to the debt collector as I have been keeping track of what the balance was and what i have been paying. And my last call to them couple of days to plead the removal of those credit report remarks verified the amount I owe from my end.

 

Based on your response :-

(1) Send dispute letter to the Credit Reporting Agencies (CRA) on which the remarks are appearing

(2) If dispute letter does not result in deletion I ought to be getting an immediate response from the debt collector (CA)

(3) Pay the hospital directly with HIPAA letter (with 'a' section) and balance due from my records

 

I did not sign any agreement with the debt collector (CA). It was merely a verbal confirmation of a payment plan.

 

I had a look at the sample letter for CRA dispute. Currently I am using CreditKarma to show me the derogatory remarks and it does not list any account number as such. It merely shows the current creditor, original creditor, amount, when opened, account status etc. Is the account number something I should obtain by retrieving the credit reports from annualcreditreports?

 

Thanks for your responses. It is helping me frame a course of action because I make any payments and mess up my wife's credit.

 

Hisham

Listen to everything Why Chat is telling you, not just part of it. Why Chat knows what he is talking about because he has been doing this  for a very long time.

HIPPA is your friend, there was absolutely no reason to go through a  debt collector, besides an oral agreement (a legal contract) is just about useless because  they are hard to prove in court if the debt collector decides to no honor their part of the agreement .

Always get all agreements in writing. 

 

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Just a quick update.

 

I mailed out the initial dispute letters to the CRAs (TU and EX) today. Lets see how it plays out.

 

WhyChat - I tried opting out using the web link --> https://optoutprescreen.com. For some fantastic reason it does not allow entering my wife's SSN saying that its not within or greater than the acceptable range for the first 3 digits. I noted that you had mentioned this as an optional step so I skipped this alone.

 

Hisham

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Are you sure you are using her correct SS#??

Have HER call;

Try  this; (  opt  out for yourself too)

You can make one phone call to 1-888-567-8688 [1-888-5-OPTOUT] to opt-out or go to:

Edited by Why Chat

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