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Oh No! What now?


gravelgirl66
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I filed BK7 last year and was discharged. I have since rebuilt my credit pretty good, to where i could qualify for a mortgage in a few more moths.

The problem is, last year I had surgery, and my insurance didnt pay all the plastic surgeon, so I have been making payments varying between, 10-50 dollars a month. The sent me a letter stating they wanted all of their 600 dollars right now, or they are sending me to collections. This is the last thing I need, after my BK. I have had perfect Credit since my BK. I tried writing a good will letter explaining i have been paying all these medical and its all I can afford. (i am a single Parent) and i am strapped. Anyways, they wont cash my check i mailed them.

what can I do? If they send to collections, that is gonna tank my credit. Afte I have worked so hard.

any ideas?

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If the debt(s) is still actually held by the original creditor, I'd make an appointment and have a face-to-face with someone at the executive level.

If you can get a real human across the table from you, you'll likely get a much better response than you'll ever get from a CA.

Keep in mind however, that it may already be too late and this may or may not hit your bureau. If that happens then you can always try the "Pay for Delete" route.

A couple more thoughts...

One collection that you made good on is not the end of the world and won't necessairly keep you from a mortgage.

I'd also ask myself if you are really financially ready to buy a house...owning a home is more than just a monthly mortgage payment - if you can't handle a $600 bill you may not be quite ready yet. As the saying goes, when you move into a house with no money, Murphy usually moves into the spare bedroom.

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I'll second that, Robert!

The only thing I can think of right now is IF this Doctor has accepted, and cashed your checks in the past, with no problems, check your state's laws in regards to payments. Some states tell you that IF you accept the payment, you are bound by it, while, others have a specific set of circumstances that must occur before it is acceptable. My point is if they have, and your state allows it, then they are bound by it until PIF.

To support what Robert is saying, if this one bill is causing a hardship for you now, what will it do if you are living in your own purchased home? You may think that since you are paying a certain amount now for rent, you can pay this much for a mortgage, guess again. True, having established with the utility companies prevents deposits, but, if you have not been paying for water, trash, etc., this is an extra expenditure many do not realize until too late. At the same time, even though this is a buyers market today, and you may get away with paying no closing fees, you still have to make the downpayment, even if you get it back at closing. Plus, even if you have the home inspected, and it comes back clean, it does not guarantee that the water heater doesn't break the following month. Yes, the home warranty applies for one year after closing, but, you still have to pay a set amount for the service call. As in ours, it was $45 a call. Then you have to wait for a PO from the insurance before repairs can be made, and parts purchased. And no, you are not reimbursed for all additional monies you spend while waiting for repairs. Just some things to think about.

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Contract law.

If they agreed to payment terms either directly or by cashing past checks, then they agreed to the repayment plan. If they attempt to alter the terms now, they may be in breach of that agreement and can be held directly liable for the actions of the debt collector they hire by vicarious liablity.

Now you'll need some kind of proof to go with this, like if you wrote them a letter with your first payment that they cashed offering to repay the debt in installments. Get all your past checks from the bank to show you have been making installment payments.

Also realize you're dealing with a bean-counter in the billing department, not a lawyer. A firm letter stating that they agreed to the repayment terms and saying something like "as your lawyer will confirm once you cashed the first installment payment you became bound by the terms of this agreement" can go a long way into stopping overzealous accountants.

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Also realize you're dealing with a bean-counter in the billing department, not a lawyer. A firm letter stating that they agreed to the repayment terms and saying something like "as your lawyer will confirm once you cashed the first installment payment you became bound by the terms of this agreement" can go a long way into stopping overzealous accountants.

My undergrad degrees are in Accounting and Finance and I can tell you that such a letter wouldn't scare ME one bit! :)

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What Methuss is saying is what I was referring to.

I just noticed something I missed in my last reading of the OP's first post. Since your health insurance was involved, double check your EOB to be positive the amount this Doctor is claiming matches the amount shown on your EOB as copay/cost share/patient's responsibility. The only amounts you may be liable for above this amount is a non-covered item, and, if there is one, you need to check to see if the Doctor processed it properly. An example is that some insurances require that the patient be advised up front, and sign for, any non-covered item. If this is not done, the Doctor cannot bill the patient and must write off as a loss. Another thing to note is to assure that any charges claimed are based on the "allowed amount", not the billed amount. An example here is if the Doctor billed for $400 and your insurance allowed only $150, this is the maximum they can bill you for. This is Federal Law and is called balance billing. This will only apply if your insurance denied a charge or the whole claim was denied as deductible not met. Too many times people have been billed for the billed amount and paid it because they do not understand the whole of their coverage.

Always remember that you are only liable for what your insurance carrier states on the EOB. At no time is the doctor allowed to bill you anything else other than that. This is because once a Doctor agrees to "accept assignment" from the patient/beneficiary, they are agreeing to all rules and regulations set by the insurance carrier on processing claims. Failure to comply is cause for many problems, including sanctions from participation in the Tricare/Medicare programs, if either is involved in the bill. This is why some providers do not accept assignment as they do not want to get involved in the procedures, plus, want as much of the almighty dollar as they can get.

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