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I made a payment arrangement for a doctor's bill. I made the payments. Can they still send this to collections?

Georgia |

I made a payment arrangement with a company in October 2008 for a doctor's bill. The agreement was to pay $25.00 on the 20th of each month beginning in November. I made all of these payments until June when I got sick and was under my doctor's care. I just got back on my feet about 2 weeks ago, and was able to send in my July payment on July 24th. The next day, I received a letter from a collection agency stating that my account was seriously past due and could be reported to the 3 major credit bureaus affecting my credit rating. I think this is totally unfair due to the fact that I have been faithfully making payments on this account. Any advice that you could give me would be most helpful.

How do I proceed with this matter? Should I just start a new payment arrangement with the collection agency? Or should I go after the first company for making false statements about me not paying on this account and telling them that the account was seriously past due. My date of service was July 17, 2008, but I never got a bill from the company until October 14, 2008, and I started my payment plan with them the next month.

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Attorney answers 1


This is a difficult situation. It appears that there you entered an agreement with this agency that was subsequently breached when you got sick. The short story is that they probably are within their rights to report you to the credit agencies, assuming that the debt is valid, and that you broke the agreement. You narrative leaves out some crucial details. Did you reach out to the collector when you knew that you would miss a payment? In many cases, collection agencies will allow a missed payment, if they can be given assurances that payments will continue. In this case, it would seem prudent to tolerate a missed payment that they have notice of rather than undertake the expense and effort of pursuing the account through legal channels.

Mr. O'Brien is licensed to practice law in Georgia. This response does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney / client relationship. This response is legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter in question. Many times the questioner may omit details which would make the reply inaccurate. Mr. O'Brien strongly advises the questioner to confer directly with an attorney in their own state to acquire more information about the specifics of their case.