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Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

  1. #1
    Posting Freak OneCheekRider's Avatar
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    Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections


    Looking for advice before I pay and here's the story, TLDR at the bottom:

    I broke my wrist several years ago and went to the local ER and utilized my health insurance. Within several months I moved. Apparently, the ER sent a bill to my old address and it never got forwarded. Fast forward to today and I get an Experian credit alert; I've been sent to collections by a lawfirm that purchased this outstanding debt. My credit dropped 152 points instantly (still in the "good" category as my score has always been nearly perfect).

    I call up the lawfirm and they say if I pay within 30 days they will discount the already small balance due and delete the collections on my credit. I ask them for an itemized listing of the bill so I can double-check: 1. to ensure this is legitimate and 2. make sure this hasn't already been paid. It's been several days and I'm still following up with them for this information.

    Assuming I owe money, is it as simple as paying this debt and the collections account will be permanently removed from my credit history? Same thing if I already paid this debt (I've switched HSA's so I still need to go through my receipts and/or get transaction information).

    On a side note, I find this lawfirm to be rather unethical in their practices. They said they sent me a letter, even to my currently correct address yet I could not find it in my USPS informed delivery scans and they did not send it certified mail. They also called me, but when I pull up my call log I can see the same number on the days they listed, but I also show I picked up and was on the line for approx 30 seconds. When confronted about this, they said, "oh yeah, the notes state 'bad connection'". I've never had multiple bad connections.

    I do not want to pay them if my credit is going to be tarnished anyway or if it makes sense to pursue a credit dispute as they might have missing information. Unfortunately, this is all new to me and my credit is important to me, so any advice is welcomed.

    TLDR: Went to hospital, several years later lawfirm sends me to collections for small unpaid medical debt, how do I remove this from my credit history?

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  2. #2
    Lifer Garandman's Avatar
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    Ironically had almost same scenario about a Physical Therapy bill. First we sent them a letter stating, “This bill is in dispute.”

    Then we called up the original party, verified the amount and services (their bill was wrong) and told them we would pay them directly, only. When they said we had to go through the credit agency, told them we would complain to the AG’s office.

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  3. #3
    Posting Freak OneCheekRider's Avatar
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    Quote Originally Posted by Garandman View Post
    Ironically had almost same scenario about a Physical Therapy bill. First we sent them a letter stating, “This bill is in dispute.”

    Then we called up the original party, verified the amount and services (their bill was wrong) and told them we would pay them directly, only. When they said we had to go through the credit agency, told them we would complain to the AG’s office.
    So did you have to pay and did it drop from you credit report pretty quickly?

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  4. #4

    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    I am fighting bills from my wrist injury. One practice refuses to file the clam correctly! After many phone call and emails. I finely told them I have no problem paying once they file the clam correctly with my insurance!
    Seems to be working, As they are finely calling my insurance company! I would make them prove its legit and as always be polite!

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  5. #5
    Lifer Garandman's Avatar
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    Quote Originally Posted by OneCheekRider View Post
    So did you have to pay and did it drop from you credit report pretty quickly?
    We paid the provider, The End. There wasn’t any threat made about credit score.

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    If stupidity got us into this mess, why canít it get us out?
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  6. #6
    Senior Member jimmycapp's Avatar
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    It's pretty easy getting stuff off your credit score now. Takes 30 days max. Just go to transunion and dispute. Type in related bill info (once you figure it out with provider), and they'll take it off your report.

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  7. #7
    Dic on
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    Never even reply "uhuh" to anything they say. that can be construed as admittance that you owe and it resets the seven year clock on collections.

    If it ends up in court, they will likely not show up and it will be dismissed. Take the dismissal to credit agencies and it disappears. If they do show up, just stand up and say "prove it" and it will be dropped, because they never have the original paperwork.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by jimmycapp View Post
    It's pretty easy getting stuff off your credit score now. Takes 30 days max. Just go to transunion and dispute. Type in related bill info (once you figure it out with provider), and they'll take it off your report.
    Only if you can prove it's not correct, otherwise its nigh on impossible.

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  8. #8
    Senior Member jimmycapp's Avatar
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    Sprint wanted a police report for the fraudulent account opened in my name. Address was close. Ss number wasn’t mine. It was easy to get it removed, twice. First time took 30 days. Second time it popped up i referenced the first dispute and it was gone in 48 hrs.

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  9. #9
    Posting Freak OneCheekRider's Avatar
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    Re: Small Medical Bill Sent to Collections

    Update - I got this removed by paying the collector.

    I'm kinda irritated by the whole process as I had to call the hospital to get an itemized bill and here's the story: Apparently the hospital billed me 4 months after my hospital stay for xrays. I had moved and although I setup mail-forwarding I never got the bill. They never sent a follow-up either, even though they had my correct and current address on file when I called. After some time, the hospital then sold my debt to the collector. The collector "made attempts" to contact me and then immediately sent me to collections. I asked for an itemized bill and they quoted me 4-6 weeks for them to mail it, however, I was able to receive an itemized bill from the hospital the next day. I had no records of me paying the bill so I paid the collector (at a discounted rate). I probably could have fought the collection company until they provided an itemized bill but the problem is they already impact your credit so if you're trying to do anything where a good credit score is necessary, this prevents it from happening. Basically, they back you into a corner.

    At the end of the day, the hospital lost a lot of money from sending a bill 4 months later and not following up to ensure address was correct. I was temporarily stressed out at my sudden decrease in credit score and the difficulties finding out what the old bill was for, but after paying a discounted rate to the creditor, my score is back into the "excellent" category. Seems like a poorly setup system where this creditor found a way to legally, but unethically, make easy money IMO.

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