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Medical Collection Account, Advice Needed Asap


mikefl
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I been working very hard on my credit for the last couple of years and have made huge progress. However recently I encountered an unexpected hit that made my scores drop quite a bit. I had a medical bill go into collections and reported to all three bureaus because the fraudulent insurance company failed to pay it (I'm working on taking action against these scum bags). Now in the mean time I need advice on what to do. I'm not sure if or how long it will be before the insurance company pays for the claim, the bill is now close to 6 months old and was entered into collections about 1 month ago by a local low life law firm collection agency. The bill is for less than $100. Only a low class scum collection agency would collect on something like this. Anyway, If I do pay this bill I need to make demands to the collection  agency to ensure the account is removed from all 3 bureaus and the damage undone. How can I accomplish this? I could also of course send the payment directly to the medical facility and make the same demands to them. I would appreciate any advise on this as I would like to resolve this asap. Thank you!

 

 

-Mike

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First put the drama llama back in the paddock.  Certainly in the last 6 months you received bills from the provider stating the insurance company had not paid.  You had ample opportunity to pay this small charge and fight it out with the insurance company so that it did not affect your credit.  Before you argue:  you signed a patient financial guarantee stating that you would be responsible for all charges not covered by your carrier.  

 

 

I'm not sure if or how long it will be before the insurance company pays for the claim, the bill is now close to 6 months old and was entered into collections about 1 month ago by a local low life law firm collection agency. The bill is for less than $100. Only a low class scum collection agency would collect on something like this. 

 

There are two views to this:  you think they are low life because they want to be paid for the services they provided you and sent it to collections when they didn't get it.  They believe you are a low life because they provided services and you have refused to pay for them.  You received care from the medical provider do you not believe they should be paid for delivering it to you?

 

I could also of course send the payment directly to the medical facility and make the same demands to them. I would appreciate any advise on this as I would like to resolve this asap. 

 

This is preferable to paying the collection agency.  The one problem is that some contracts between providers and agencies state specifically they will not take the payment directly and will refer patients to the CA once the account is placed in collections.  You cannot force the provider to violate their contract with the CA.

 

Anyway, If I do pay this bill I need to make demands to the collection  agency to ensure the account is removed from all 3 bureaus and the damage undone. 

 

You cannot demand that they remove an accurate trade line from your credit reports.  You can ask,  You can negotiate but there is no demanding that they give you what you want.  

 

How can I accomplish this? 

 

You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar.  You start by contacting the provider and with sincerity ask to do a pay for delete where you pay them and they get the CA to delete the trade line from the 3 reports.  If you have not had any contact with them when the insurance didn't pay a simple "gee I did not realize that my carrier didn't pay this.  I would like to pay you right now and while I do this I would greatly appreciate it if you could get the CA to remove this from my credit reports."  Then build from there.

 

If they cannot work with you then you will have to negotiate the PFD with the CA directly.  I highly suggest you leave out language like "fraud, scum bag, low life, and low class scum" or any other insult that you used here because it will cause them to dig in their heels and refuse to work with you.  

 

Most insurance companies have a maximum time frame in which you can appeal the denial of a claim.  Do not wait too long after taking care of the bill to appeal their denial or you could find it time barred.  

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Whether you believe that the insurance company failed to pay your claim in error or deliberately violated your contract of insurance, a good way to get action sooner rather than later on your complaints to them is this: CC the state insurance commissioner's office on your complaint letter to the company.

 

I worked in medical insurance for 11 years, till working for the enemy got to be too much. I promise you that letters with that magic CC on them got much quicker attention than those without.

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Actually, if the OP would have paid the bill without it going to collections, I believe that it would have opened up the option for the OP to take the insurance company to court rather than deal with the appeals process because now the OP has a claim that can be taken to court. Someone tell me if I am wrong.

I remember years ago having a similar situation (only my bill was $600) where the insurance company was trying to deny the bill and make me sue the local library. I was going to have none of that because the incident was my fault, not the library's, so I called the insurance company and told them that this would be my appeal:

"What I will do is pay the bill and then take you guys to court, and then report to my boss what happened here."

They quickly coughed up the money and had they decided against me, that is the path I would have taken because I had the money and knew they would not want this issue to get in front of a judge or jury.

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Maybe I was not very clear, I am calling scum the insurance company not the medical provider! I agree the medical provider is not at fault here and just trying to get paid! I have no issue with that! The issue here is this insurance company is well know for not paying claims and ignoring people (I just learned this recently). Right after the medical facility submitted the claim for less than $100 the insurance company sent me a letter requesting proof of prior coverage. How unfounded and bogus is that? Why would any insurance company ask for that when this was a simple I'm sick and I went to the doctor visit and it involved such a low bill? This was my first and only claim, I already paid the facility the $35 deductible. Doesn't make any sense, I was previously unemployed for over two years. But I did contact my previous employer and request the certificate of prior insurance coverage which was sent to the insurance company by fax several times and by mail. I never heard from the insurance company again. It is just now, about one month ago that I receive the collections letter. I have already filled all sorts of complains, Better Business Bureau and two separate complains with two separate states (one where I live and one where the insurance company is located with the division of banking and insurance. So far looks like both state complaints might turn out to be useless, one gave me some BS and the other they are still investigating but claim if the insurance company is governed by blah blah federal law then they can't really help. It's amazing what this insurance company gets away with. But I'm not done, I will bring some misery to them no matter how long it takes or what I have to do. 

 

I will try to pay the provider direct, advising them that by accepting my payment they agree to remove the collection account from all three credit bureaus and I'll explain the situation to them. I mean how much are they going to get from a $xx collection, not much at all. I'm sure they would rather get the full amount and bypass the middle man which is a low class so called collection law firm.

 

 

-Mike

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in the future, avoid this entire headache by just paying the $100 and fighting with your insurance company for reimbursement.

Had I known the outcome I would have done that! I assumed the insurance company would pay since that's the whole reason one has insurance! And I don't see anything that says they are not under obligation to pay! I'm sure if I tried to sue them any judge would throw their case out the window because the law is really on my side, it simply shows they had no intention of paying the claim from the very beginning.

 

-Mike

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Prior coverage is NOT an issue at this point, as the ACA made it illegal to pre-ex medical conditions.

 

Actually prior coverage IS an issue in this case.  That portion of ACA simply means that you cannot be denied getting coverage due to a pre-existing condition and it didn't take effect until January 1, 2014.  The OP received care at least 6 months ago prior to that part of the law so it is possible that the new plan they were on could deny paying a claim based on a pre-existing condition.

 

Right after the medical facility submitted the claim for less than $100 the insurance company sent me a letter requesting proof of prior coverage. How unfounded and bogus is that? Why would any insurance company ask for that when this was a simple I'm sick and I went to the doctor visit and it involved such a low bill? This was my first and only claim, I already paid the facility the $35 deductible. Doesn't make any sense, I was previously unemployed for over two years. But I did contact my previous employer and request the certificate of prior insurance coverage which was sent to the insurance company by fax several times and by mail. I never heard from the insurance company again. 

 

As long as there was no lapse in coverage greater than 90 days they cannot deny the claim under the portability of coverage act.  However, if you did not elect COBRA or get other coverage then it is possible that the claim could be denied based on it the policy terms.  Some employer sponsored plans state that if there was no coverage for a specified time prior to being covered on their plan there is a higher deductible or one year waiting period before they cover care.  You would need to read the plan documents to know for sure.

 

Your best bet is to speak directly to the provider and plead innocence and offer to pay them directly and ask that they remove the TL or at least call off their CA and have them remove the TL.

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Actually prior coverage IS an issue in this case.  That portion of ACA simply means that you cannot be denied getting coverage due to a pre-existing condition and it didn't take effect until January 1, 2014.  The OP received care at least 6 months ago prior to that part of the law so it is possible that the new plan they were on could deny paying a claim based on a pre-existing condition.

 

 

As long as there was no lapse in coverage greater than 90 days they cannot deny the claim under the portability of coverage act.  However, if you did not elect COBRA or get other coverage then it is possible that the claim could be denied based on it the policy terms.  Some employer sponsored plans state that if there was no coverage for a specified time prior to being covered on their plan there is a higher deductible or one year waiting period before they cover care.  You would need to read the plan documents to know for sure.

 

Your best bet is to speak directly to the provider and plead innocence and offer to pay them directly and ask that they remove the TL or at least call off their CA and have them remove the TL.

Thanks for the reply. I just want to clarify again, this was a just a doctors visit when I was sick. We humans get sick sometimes. There was no surgery, etc, so I don't believe any of that stuff applies. I paid the $35 co-pay and the balance which is less than $100 is what the insurance company is to pay. Prior to this job I was unemployed for almost 2 years! I was laid off and I did have cobra for some time after I was laid off but not for long as I could not afford it. I did send the proof of coverage requested to the insurance company multiple times although I found the request absurd. I can understand if I racked a $10,000 bill and had a major surgery them requesting proof of prior coverage but not for a simple visit to the doctor with a balance below $100. This is just a tactic they are using to not pay the bill. 

 

I am going to pay the bill direct and figure out the wording to use on my letter so that I can get this junk removed from my credit report. What I want to avoid doing is paying then not having the account removed, I want to set some sort of condition up front. I was thinking "By accepting this check # 123 you are agree to cease any collections and remove this account from any credit bureaus it was reported to.". What do you folks think?

 

-Mike

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I am going to pay the bill direct and figure out the wording to use on my letter so that I can get this junk removed from my credit report. What I want to avoid doing is paying then not having the account removed, I want to set some sort of condition up front. I was thinking "By accepting this check # 123 you are agree to cease any collections and remove this account from any credit bureaus it was reported to.". What do you folks think?

 

-Mike

 

You CANNOT force the provider to violate a contract with the CA if they have one.  Not to mention there is no reason to continue collection activities if you pay them.  I do NOT recommend sending a letter that says that because many providers take offense to it.  They will simply mail your check back to you.  

 

This is the one time you pick up the phone and speak to the doctor's office manager or billing manager and discuss it.  If they agree that they can and will do a PFD then you send a letter that says "per our conversation I have enclosed payment in the amount of $xxxx.  As we agreed the trade line will be removed from all 3 credit reports now that payment has been received."  Or something to that effect.  By discussing it first (including an apology for the delay) they tend to be a lot more cooperative about deleting.  

 

You need to keep in mind that if their contract calls for them referring you to the CA and they both have a hard line policy of not deleting it will not happen.

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If you want to pay the provider directly, just do it. No HERE'S YOUR PAYMENT, SEE? I WENT DIRECT TO YOU INSTEAD OF THE COLLECTION AGENCY!

 

You have a much better chance that the check will be cashed if you just send it, with a copy of one of your bills that came directly from the provider, than if you try to push them to take it while announcing that you know it's now with a collection agency. 

 

Then, after you know the check's been cashed, contact the collection agency and tell them to go away, because the bill's been paid. It works. I've done it in similar circumstances.

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You have a much better chance that the check will be cashed if you just send it, with a copy of one of your bills that came directly from the provider, than if you try to push them to take it while announcing that you know it's now with a collection agency.

Then, after you know the check's been cashed, contact the collection agency and tell them to go away, because the bill's been paid. It works. I've done it in similar circumstances.

I've done this also. I just mailed the provider a check, they cashed it, and then I called them after the fact and discussed my options. They're resubmitting to insurance (this was for a couple of behavioral health visits I had last year after a friend's death. I thought I was covered under my primary insurance company, but that kind of coverage was through a different provider.)

The medical provider is submitting to the second insurance company, and if they pay it, I'll get reimbursed what I paid.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ok so I mailed the provider a check and they cashed it in a heartbeat! What should be my next step, write to the collection agency and request removal? Write to the credit bureaus and send proof account was paid and request removal? Or write to the medial provider and explain the situation and request removal? Would also appreciate any verbage examples I should be using in my letter. I'm trying to undo the damage from this collection asap. 

 

I just pulled my updated credit report today and the account remains listed and it continues to impact my score, seems my score when down even more since the prior month.

 

 

-Mike

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Ok so I mailed the provider a check and they cashed it in a heartbeat! What should be my next step, write to the collection agency and request removal? Write to the credit bureaus and send proof account was paid and request removal? Or write to the medial provider and explain the situation and request removal? Would also appreciate any verbage examples I should be using in my letter. I'm trying to undo the damage from this collection asap. 

 

I just pulled my updated credit report today and the account remains listed and it continues to impact my score, seems my score when down even more since the prior month.

 

 

-Mike

 

You have two options:  ask the provider to get the CA to remove the trade line or dispute it in writing to the bureaus as "paid to original creditor and handled by insurance" and see if it comes off.  The CA should not validate because there is no longer a collections account for them to report.  DO NOT use an online dispute because you may only choose one reason and you have no record of the dispute.

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Guest usctrojanalum

Getting it removed totally might be tough, the CA has every right to update the account as paid and leave you with a paid collection on your TL.

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  • 7 months later...

Hello all, here is the update on this. The account is still being reported as a collections paid under all 3 bureaus. I wrote to the medical facility several months ago asking them nicely to contact the collection agency and have those entries removed but they never responded to my letter. I also mentioned to them that the insurance company had made a payment to them and that they now owe me a refund. Apparently after I filled many complaints against the insurance company which already has a very bad rep they made a small payment on the claim around $40 I think it was. I just contacted the insurance company again to get proof of the payment as I lost access to it. Then I want to contact the medical facility again, this time via a certified letter perhaps. What do you all recommend? Should I try to sue the insurance company and or the medical facility? The insurance company ignored my claim for months and eventually made a meager payment only after I filled many complaints against them. While the medical facility sent the claim to collections, eventually I paid them in full because I had expected and assumed the insurance company had paid them to begin with and now the medical facility owes me money and they are ignoring me. In the mean time I've had a collections entry for almost a year now affecting my scores.

 

-Mike

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You have no basis to sue the insurance company.  It sometimes takes several appeals to get a claim paid and they most likely have a valid defense.  Even if they didn't, as the one who got care it is your responsibility to pay for the care and fight with your carrier on your own if you don't want it to go to a collections status that reports.

 

The hospital is not required to remove the trade line only to report it accurately and it is a paid collection.  

 

First thing Monday call the billing office for the hospital and speak to the manager NOT a first line drone.  If they do not process your refund immediately then send a CMRR letter to the president of the hospital and file a complaint with the state insurance commissioner.  That will get them moving.  If it doesn't then you would have to file a lawsuit to get the money you are owed.

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You have no basis to sue the insurance company.  It sometimes takes several appeals to get a claim paid and they most likely have a valid defense.  Even if they didn't, as the one who got care it is your responsibility to pay for the care and fight with your carrier on your own if you don't want it to go to a collections status that reports.

 

The hospital is not required to remove the trade line only to report it accurately and it is a paid collection.  

 

First thing Monday call the billing office for the hospital and speak to the manager NOT a first line drone.  If they do not process your refund immediately then send a CMRR letter to the president of the hospital and file a complaint with the state insurance commissioner.  That will get them moving.  If it doesn't then you would have to file a lawsuit to get the money you are owed.

 

Thanks for the reply. I did receive the proof of payment from the insurance company so I now have that to send. The medical provider is one of those emergency care type facilities, not a hospital. I just received my credit report update and the collections entry remains.I guess I'll try sending a certified letter along with the proof of payment from the insurance company to see if they will respond this time around. I guess I'll ask again nicely for them to request the removal of the collection entries since the issue has been resolved.

 

 

-Mike

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I've got to throw some pennies in on this one.

 

Mikefl, I did a thread on medical collections some time back (2007).  On page one in this section, look for the "pinned" regarding medical bills.  It includes some good info.

 

For example, do you have any copies of the bill?  Look at the charges.  Then match with the copy of your EOB from your carrier.  You said the bill was for $100.  What did your carrier allow?

 

What you want to find is IF the provider, upon not receiving payment, billed you for the whole amount of care, just as they did your carrier.  If so, and they agreed to accept assignment they are in violation.  It is called "Balance Billing" and is illegal..  You can ask your carrier if they are.  Most times an agreement, or contract are signed with the guidelines to be followed.  These must be followed at all times.  You simply want to know what the agreement contains, regarding all parties.   You also want to know if there are any items that are listed on the EOB as "Mutually Exclusive".  If so, they can't bill you for it.  There's more, just read the thread.   Not knowing your carrier, I can't comment about them..

 

Another item you want to know from your carrier is IF the provider agrees to accept assignment, does your carrier now become liable.   When I contacted Tricare of the matter, they told me upfront that the provider was in error as once they agree to accept assignment, Tricare is responsible.  Also, up until a few years ago, providers were forbidden to ever send a claim to collection, and, must discuss with Tricare first. If your carrier offers it, let them get involved.

 

Medical bills was what brought me to this site.  My carrier that was involved was Tricare.  Plus, my primary was a my employer at the time, who was self insured. The primary problem with mine was a Hospital, knowing I had secondary coverage, sent it to a CA.  I called them upon receipt of second bill.  They said they would, then, sent to a CA instead.  The end result was they had to recall from the CA, assure all info was deleted, and were sanctioned by Tricare.  Tricare is the insurance for the military and retirees.

 

Simply, you want to look for errors, not to avoid paying a legitimate claim, but, to assure you were billed properly, and that proper payment was made, and, any overpayment is refunded.  You can use this info, once you have it, to "cause" the provider to get the collector to delete.

 

Yes, you could submit a dispute with the CRA's, and see how the CA responds.  Then, depending on the response, you'll know your next step.  Some times, a CA does not respond on these, if payment was made, and, it just deletes.  Yes, sometimes, just because they can, they will.  If necessary, once you have done this, let us know. 

 

Lastly, I have to accept some responsibility for my problem.  I still got bills from the provider even after I told them.  Knowing Tricare was somewhat slow, I simply "filed" them.  I'm sure you did the exact same thing.  Thought your carrier was going to pay sometime, why bother.  And, for future, know all you can about your carrier, so as to know up front if the provider is billing you incorrectly.  Especially now.  Luckily, I do not have to worry about any insurance anymore.  I get all of mine at the VA. 

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What you want to find is IF the provider, upon not receiving payment, billed you for the whole amount of care, just as they did your carrier.  If so, and they agreed to accept assignment they are in violation.  It is called "Balance Billing" and is illegal..  You can ask your carrier if they are.  Most times an agreement, or contract are signed with the guidelines to be followed.  These must be followed at all times.  You simply want to know what the agreement contains, regarding all parties.   You also want to know if there are any items that are listed on the EOB as "Mutually Exclusive".  If so, they can't bill you for it.  There's more, just read the thread.   Not knowing your carrier, I can't comment about them..

 

Another item you want to know from your carrier is IF the provider agrees to accept assignment, does your carrier now become liable.   When I contacted Tricare of the matter, they told me upfront that the provider was in error as once they agree to accept assignment, Tricare is responsible.  Also, up until a few years ago, providers were forbidden to ever send a claim to collection, and, must discuss with Tricare first. If your carrier offers it, let them get involved.

 

First and foremost TRICARE is an entirely different animal than any other carrier and you cannot make a direct comparison.

 

Second:  balance billing USED to be a huge problem about a decade ago which would be around the last time you wrote that thread.  It has not been an issue in quite some time.  Balance billing is the reason that carriers began sending EOMBs so that their subscribers know exactly what their financial responsibility is.

 

Last:  the OP identified that this is not a hospital but a "doc in a box" or stand alone urgent care center.  They virtually NEVER take assignment and all have a sign up stating they will give you a receipt to file an insurance claim but will not do so on your behalf.  Agreeing to file with the carrier does not create a liability for the provider.  If you read the financial agreements they have you sign currently they all state that they will file with your carrier as a courtesy but you are still responsible for the bill if the carrier does not pay.  TRICARE is entirely different because the providers agree to that liability in order to participate in the government program.  It does not apply to private insurers.

 

That last sentence is why every patient must stay on top of their bills with providers because assuming that it has been handled is the fastest way to have something land on your credit report and do damage.

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Clydesmom, 

 

Tricare is the same as other insurances.  The only differences with them is they only cover active and retired military and family, and, if you have a primary carrier from employment, or Medicare, it is always secondary.  I've been retired from the Marine Corps for over 40 years now and have had CHAMPUS/Tricare ever since.  And, have used both over the years with my employee carriers.  They include United Healthcare, Aetna, Blue Cross, and Blue Shield, plus one who was self insured.  During my career in the Gaming Industry, I was the one who shared the benefit packages with the new hires, except those who were members of the Culinary Union.

 

CHAMPUS was the early version that paid on a 75-25 program, no matter who the provider was, with a $300 deductible for a family. 

 

Believe it or not, Balance Billing still exists in some instances, mostly due to a simple error, not due to carelessness, or thought they could get away with it, as before.  This is found most often when the claim is denied due to the deductible not met..  The provider will bill the patient the whole amount billed when they know that they can only bill for the allowed amount.  Some providers still bill patients for Mutually Exclusive items, again, by someone in billing who does not pay attention.  This you will find most often on ER bills and involve your arriving after a certain time, such as after 10 PM and before 6 AM.  I have yet to find one carrier who will pay that item, and all consider it Mutually Exclusive. .

 

 We all know that most claims are processed over the internet using simple code.  And we all know that we all received an EOB from our carrier on each claim billed.  What we didn't do was double check all that was displayed.  Most of us only looked at the "You May Be Billed" and nothing else.  Note my hand in the air on this one.  I still checked each of my late wife's EOB's from Medicare and Tricare.  And, yes, I still found errors on some of them, all from the provider.  True, a simple phone call and all was fixed, with an apology.  And, most times the errors come from contracted billing offices, off property.

 

And, today more of us do pay closer attention to our EOB's.  How many of us now do this because we allowed ourselves to get "messed up" before?  Just as there are many of us who now do, how many still look at them, and in the basket they go.  Then, wonder a few months later why a CA is sending them a letter.

 

As to your comment about Urgent Care, we have many here and each take assignment.  There was a time when you would find a Doctor who would not accept assignment, but, would file the claim for you. What would happen in most cases is the patient would receive the check, cash it, and not pay the Doctor.  Personally, we only had one Doctor who did this, in 1979.  But, he gave us the form to file the claim.  We got the check and the wife went down and signed it over to him. 

 

Again, Tricare is just as the others.  A provider who accepts assignment with any carrier and agrees to their parameters, pay schedules, whatever, are bound by that agreement. The financial agreements you sign are the same no matter where you receive treatment.  Most often, the verbiage is the same.  Simply, the wording says you are liable for any amount not paid.  That's common sense and no one will argue that.  Where the problem lies is if there is an error in the amount the provider is claiming due, the patient has the right to assure all is proper, such as if the claim was denied due to deductible.  Did the provider bill as per the denial?  This is where the OP messed up. He didn't keep his EOB to double check what he might be billed.  Of course, the simple answer is to call his carrier and ask for a copy of the EOB for that treatment, or visit.  And, while waiting for the copy, ask the rep to give him the numbers.  BTW, Tricare removed the collection assignment section a few years ago.  I reprinted the page some time back and it was no longer there.  They still want us to call if any problems and will assist as they can.

 

I don't discuss PPO's as I threw them out of the last Casino I worked at.  Why is that they state that they will "not pay for any treatment that would otherwise be free".  Being a Service Connected Veteran, I receive all of my healthcare at a VA facility.  To compensate their budget, the VA will bill your carrier, accept as payment in full, any funds they receive, and not bill the veteran.  Veterans who are not Service Connected do pay a cost share.  This, of course, is over and above.

 

I forgot to mention in my last, but, if a person has not received their EOB within at least 30 days  of treatment, they should contact their carrier to check the status.  This way they find out if it was billed or not, if more info was necessary and provider has not responded.  In short, you get all info you need on one call, not two.  Another simple mistake of many are when they don't pay attention to what they checked off or signed.  One item innocently marked is the question if you have another insurance.  This can be a real PITA.  More than one phone call, plus, more paperwork.  Another is what you sought treatment for.  Could it be considered due to an accident.  Again, a big PITA. 

 

Balance Billing is still on the books and is still illegal.  It is found in the Federal Codes.  Unfortunately, since my wife passed, I have shredded so much paperwork that is no longer necessary, I don't have the section handy.  I say that as I only deal with the VA, which is all free to me.  I do pay for Medicare B, so as to protect my Tricare, just in case I'm away and a VA is not available to me.  And, no, I do not have to deal with the ACA.  If I do come across the section,  will share.  Can't recall if I noted it in the thread, so, will check.

 

Lastly, and most important, what is written on the EOB is what must be followed.  It does not matter if the provider accepted assignment or not.  What it says is what it is.  The  patient is only liable for what is shown as the amount they "may be billed".  Remember, everything involved with that claim is present on that EOB.  In short, if it says you may be billed the full amount as claimed, you are liable for that amount.  And, yes, you do have the right to appeal the decision if you do not agree.  Again, this is why we all need to read the EOB's very carefully, and ask questions when you have them.  Understand that the stupid question is the question not asked.  It took me some time to fix my mess, which I did play a part in creating, and learned a lesson I never want to repeat.  I caused the billing office to lose their contract with the provider, plus was sanctioned by Tricare for 90 days.  The provider themselves had to recall their claims and write off as it was their fault they did not get paid.  The CA got "spanked" by their state, for refusing to assist me in the dispute, when I first contacted them.

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Sorry that I dropped by this thread too late to help.  :(

 

In the future, pay the dang bill before it goes to collections!  Fight the insurance company after.

 

Additionally, I have had success with a medical provider that turned an account over to a CA with calling the patient billing office and asking the manager to please help.....(insert sad story)...then offer PIF if they will pull back from CA (which gets CA deleted from CRs).  Does it always work?  No.  My success rate is about 80% on those.  After a refusal to pull back from the CA, I usually say that I am sorry to hear that but OCs that agree get paid first.....and then hang up.

 

I have one CA hanging on where OC refused.  The SOL just expired on the debt so I am going to give it another try.  :)  Ya never know.

 

In the end, here is the deal... You incurred a debt.  You didn't pay and it went to collections.  You then paid OC who informed the CA and gave them their fee.  CA updates the medical collection to paid.  You can stomp your feet all you want, but it IS accurate information.  You will have a hard time getting a deletion at this point.  This is one reason why we advise folks never to pay a CA and get a PFD in writing.  Once the paid collection appears, it is usually set in stone.

 

Here is the only light in this tunnel on that TL.....FICO 08 counts medical collections lower than others.  Two years after the "paid collection" update, it basically is nothing to your FICO score.  This collection will also not hinder your attempts at getting a mortgage. 

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  • 3 months later...

Since I made the payment directly to the medical facility and they cashed the check (not the collection agency) don't I have the right to request that the collection agency remove the entry from all three bureaus? I believe I had something similar done in the past. I never had any communication or dealings with the collection agency.

 

 

-Mike

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