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need advice about a bogus debt collection

Discussion in 'Topical Discussions (In Depth)' started by Avalon, Jul 31, 2013.



  1. Avalon

    Avalon Lawn Protected by Guns Of Avalon Platinum Bling

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    My Daughter got a phone call from a medical office she had been a patient at over 6 years ago. It was along time ago but I remember always paying our deductibles and making sure she stayed within the parameters of her insurance policy. A lady from the Doctors office called and told my Daughter she owed $1,200 dollars on this old bill and they had been trying to contact her for 6 years.. that's total bull****. This is the first we have heard of any of this. The lady could not tell her why she owed the money. Maybe the insurance didn't cover all the treatments or maybe we had not paid our deductibles. She gave my daughter some dates and told her to call her old insurance company. She said she would turn the debt over to a collection agency very soon.

    I did some reading. First off I doubt she owes this money. Second we have a 3-6 yr limit on these type of debts and that time has past. Also my Daughter and her husband just applied for a house loan and I think this is connected..

    Any advice? At this point I'm so mad I would rather pay a Lawyer double the amount then pay them a penny.
     
  2. Rcpb2000

    Rcpb2000 Silver Member Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    Have them send a letter referring to the debt and how the debt was created(what procedure or doctor visit). Of course, have them send it certified. If they can't give you details about the debt other than it is old, how would they expect to collect if they don't even know why your daughter owes anything? Don't give them an address or any other info. Just tell them to send it to the last known address in their database.
     
  3. searcher

    searcher Mother Lode Found Site Supporter ++ Mother Lode

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    lhslancers3270 likes this.
  4. KnurledNut

    KnurledNut Seeker Seeker

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    As stated, next time they call request certified copies of all debt. Do not give up any personal information.
     
  5. Goldhedge

    Goldhedge Moderator Site Mgr Site Supporter

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    They have to prove the paper trail, otherwise they're scamming you.


    It could be a collection agency that purchased 'the debt' for pennies on the dollar?

    Again, make them prove you had a contract with them. No contract, pound sand!
     
  6. bb28

    bb28 Silver Member Silver Miner

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    There's a bunch of these types of things in the medical world that are borderline scams. You may want to check to see if there is any validity to their claim, whether you agree with them or not. My girlfriend was seen a few years ago on suspicion of a broken bone. A few months later, we got a medical bill in the mail for some office and doctor we have never seen or heard of. Turns out the primary doctor sends all of their x-rays to this "specialists" office for a medical opinion. We never got an opinion from them or authorized this service, however we are told they reviewed the chart. In my book, this is a scam although not quite on the same level as the royalty who need us to wire them mone in Nigeria.

    bb
     
  7. Ebie

    Ebie Midas Member Midas Member

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    Just ask them to send a letter with exact details, times, dates, insurance billing copies.
    You will not hear from them, probably.
    If they threaten to send it to a debt collection agency, don't worry, they will not do anything.
    Something is wrong here.
    Why did it take them 6 years to bill you?
    Maybe the insurance did not pay anything, and, they are following up, but, it seems too long.
     
  8. WhyKnow

    WhyKnow Thnk Tank Gold Chaser

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    Sounds like a collection co. If you or your daughter has been in financial distress since then, they will be alerted when she applys for the loan. I would at least address it. They have your contact info now.

    Did you like the doctor? If you know the doc, call them and ask what's up. If it's a small, private office, he might want to know.
     
    Ebie likes this.
  9. GOLDBRIX

    GOLDBRIX God,Donald Trump,most in GIM2 I Trust. OTHERS-meh Site Supporter Platinum Bling

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    And you want a copy of the itemized billings AND payments AND since insurance is involved the agreed discount ALL insurances place in their contracts, AND you want it in chronological order.
    If they do not provide you evidence/records of the DEBT they have no basis to ask for payment. If they proceed to collections collections have the same obligation.

    Watch your credit reports. If this incident shows up on any report challenge the entry. The Credit Bureau is to document the challenge and give the "debt" holder 90+/- days to provide there proof of debt or the Credit Bureau must remove the entry.

    If the Dr's office continues to pursue w/o providing you a copy of their evidence you then have a civil case.

    A lady out west just received a judgement in her favor for over a million dollars on a similar scam, and abuse that went on for several years, and of course ruined her credit during that time.
     
    smooth likes this.
  10. Rollie Free

    Rollie Free Midas Member Midas Member

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    They do this to ten people maybe three of them send money.

    Some people are intimidated by the medical industry, they know that. $1,200 is a nice figure.Not impossible for most people to come up with. Doctor must be having a few financial issues.
     
  11. Ensoniq

    Ensoniq Midas Member Midas Member Site Supporter ++

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    I'd pull my credit report to see if I had a reported debt marked uncollected that was 6 years old.

    Don't sweat the calls, the debt is either yours and you can negotiate its payment for penny's on the dollar or its not yours and you shouldn't worry about it.

    Dave Ramsey recommends collection bully https://www.daveramsey.com/recommends/fair-debt/

    They take cases on contingency when you have have adequate proof that the collector is violation debt collection law (can't call your work, can't tell anyone about the debt, can only call between certain hours, cannot speak abusively to you)"

    Collection agencies use these tactics regularly (lying, intimidating) because they work. They get caught and funded periodically when knowledgable consumers take the trouble to document them and write them off as a cost if business,
     
    Avalon likes this.
  12. Avalon

    Avalon Lawn Protected by Guns Of Avalon Platinum Bling

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    thanks for all the advice..
    I have a question... after I call the insurance company to see if these dates in question were even filed for should I call the medical clinic and get written validation that claim forms were even sent and that actual office visits even occurred. It was a long time ago but I am suspicious they billed us for visits she never made.. I ask because since the debt is so old does having communication with the clinic reset the debt.? My understanding that even if this debt was valid and I doubt it is the saute has run out years ago. Will I reset the debt by having contact with the Doctors office? As far as I know the call came form the medical clinic and not a collector.
     
  13. Avalon

    Avalon Lawn Protected by Guns Of Avalon Platinum Bling

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    the Doctor is question was a nut case and is now dead..She had a brain tumor and was acting strange at the time of these visits..The clinic was some type of scam that tried to rope you into daily visits for therapy.. We stopped going because the Doctor diagnosed my daughter with diabetes and prescribed her strong medication for it. The diagnosis was made with a finger stick. I knew my daughter didn't have diabetes and we went to another Doctor and proper blood tests run. If she had taken the medication she could have gone into a coma..
     
    WhyKnow likes this.
  14. Publico

    Publico Banned

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    Avalon, what state are you in?

    (I mean the physical place not, "I'm in the state of great anxiety.")
     
  15. Avalon

    Avalon Lawn Protected by Guns Of Avalon Platinum Bling

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    LOL..I'm in a state of anxiety too.. We are in NC. It looks like the time of limitations on these type debts runs out in 3-6 years. We are past that date. That however wont stop them frfrom turning her over to a collection agency and getting her credit dinged while she is trying to buy a house. They simply have no legal right to sue for the money.

    My Daughter called the insurance company and they had to go into the archives to find the info. The insurance lady was very helpful. She validated the date and charges and said what was left after insurance did not come anywhere near $1,200 dollars. She is mailing copies of all the transactions. She said some of the charges were really bogus looking.

    The question is do I call the clinic and tell them to hold collection while we sort through this or tell them to f@ck off.
     
  16. MrLucky

    MrLucky Silver Member Silver Miner

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    Do you know a lawyer? I don't mean hire one, but are you friendly with one? If so, ask him his opinion on all of this.

    If you don't know one, maybe you should get the advice of one. An hour $ of his time will be well worth it.
     
    Sport likes this.
  17. Sport

    Sport Gold Member Gold Chaser

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    Talk to a lawyer. I hate to recommend that, but the only way to know for sure. Before you go make sure that you have all of the information on what they are trying to collect.
     
  18. Argent Dragon

    Argent Dragon Site Support Site Mgr Site Supporter

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    Yes, check with your state on the statute of limitations on debts. Also, as mentioned above, write a letter of dispute forcing them to prove the debt. The burden of proof is on their shoulders not yours (or your daughter).
     
  19. Publico

    Publico Banned

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    Avalon - Write a letter to all involved that the debt is over three years old (that is no action on the debt by the debtor, i.e. payment made) and under N.C. law the debt is stale and unenforceable. (3 years sol.).

    Don't pay any thing on it even 10 cents since that restarts the clock from zero. And don't agree to anything. Best to answer the phone and immediately hang up.
     
  20. InsertUserNameHere

    InsertUserNameHere Seeker Seeker

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    Here is how I do debt collection

    COLLECTOR. Hello, can I speak to Mr. InsertUserNameHere?
    ME. He passed away.
     
  21. Avalon

    Avalon Lawn Protected by Guns Of Avalon Platinum Bling

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    I talked to a Lawyer.. She was really nice and told me how to handle this without having to hire her. The first thing you do is call the creditor asking for their name and address and let them know you will be sending a registered letter requesting a validation notice.. The letter basically shifts the liability from you back on to the creditor and makes them prove its a valid debt. Ill post a copy of the letter at the end of the post in case anyone finds themselves in this situation..

    The Lawyer said this is a common tactic because most people panic and don’t know their rights and pay the money. She said the letter is usually enough to make the creditor back down when the debt is years past the limitation date of collecting. Not only that but the sums the Insurance company are coming up with is a small fraction of what the Drs office said was owed.. The Lawyer said if they don’t back down after the letter then they can step in and write letters letting them know their actions are out of bounds...
    ======================================



    To Whom It May Concern:

    This letter is being sent to you in response to a phone call notice sent to me on July 31, 2013. Be advised that this is not a refusal to pay, but a notice sent pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809 (b) that your claim is disputed and validation is requested.

    This is NOT a request for “verification” or proof of my mailing address, but a request for VALIDATION made pursuant to the above named Title and Section. I respectfully request that your offices provide me with competent evidence that I have any legal obligation to pay you.


    Please provide me with the following:

    What the money you say I owe is for;
    Explain and show me how you calculated what you say I owe;
    Provide me with copies of any papers that show I agreed to pay what you say I owe;
    Provide a verification or copy of any judgment if applicable;
    Identify the original creditor;
    Prove the Statute of Limitations has not expired on this account
    Show me that you are licensed to collect in my state
    Provide me with your license numbers and Registered Agent

    At this time I will also inform you that if your offices have reported invalidated information to any of the 3 major Credit Bureau’s (Equifax, Experian or TransUnion) this action might constitute fraud under both Federal and State Laws. Due to this fact, if any negative mark is found on any of my credit reports by your company or the company that you represent I will not hesitate in bringing legal action against you for the following:

    Violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act
    Violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
    Defamation of Character
    If your offices are able to provide the proper documentation as requested in the following Declaration, I will require at least 30 days to investigate this information and during such time all collection activity must cease and desist.
    Also during this validation period, if any action is taken which could be considered detrimental to any of my credit reports, I will consult with my legal counsel for suit. This includes any listing any information to a credit reporting repository that could be inaccurate or invalidated or verifying an account as accurate when in fact there is no provided proof that it is.

    If your offices fail to respond to this validation request within 30 days from the date of your receipt, all references to this account must be deleted and completely removed from my credit file and a copy of such deletion request shall be sent to me immediately.

    I would also like to request, in writing, that no telephone contact be made by your offices to my home or to my place of employment. If your offices attempt telephone communication with me, including but not limited to computer generated calls and calls or correspondence sent to or with any third parties, it will be considered harassment and I will have no choice but to file suit. All future communications with me MUST be done in writing and sent to the address noted in this letter by USPS.

    It would be advisable that you assure that your records are in order before I am forced to take legal action. This is an attempt to correct your records, any information obtained shall be used for that purpose.

    Best Regards,
     

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