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If one is paying monthy on a bill, can they turn it over to collections?

Antioch, TN |

Paying a bill $10.00.a month, and now it has been turned over for collections, saying need to pay more than the above amount. thought if you give a monthy payment that it would be not put in for a collection agency.

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Filed under: Debt
Attorney answers 3


I know of no general principle of law that prevents a creditor from turning a bill over to collections where the debtor is not making a monthly payment of sufficient size to satisfy the creditor. Sometimes a debtor's obligation is so big, and the payment so small that, when interest is taken into account, the debtor is actually going deeper into debt every month. Find out what minimum monthly payment would be acceptable to the creditor, and arrange your budget so as to be able to make it.

Not legal advice as I don't practice law in Tennessee. It's just my two cents on the facts you describe in light of general principles of law. If you need legal advice, please consult a lawyer who holds Tennessee licensure. That's not me.

Good luck.


Unless you have a written, signed agreement from the creditor that they have accepted your $10 payment arrangement in perpetuity (and only if you have not breached that agreement), your creditor is free to turn your debt over to collections where the amount you owe may go up quite a bit. If the collections agency takes the matter to court and a judgment is entered against you, you may file a Motion to Commute to Installment Payments (Slow Pay Motion) and put on proof of your budget and why you can only pay $10/mo. If the judge agrees with you that you only have $10 at the end of your budget to pay on the debt, your $10 payment arrangement would become the set arrangement on your debt until you miss a payment and then generally all other forms of execution are available to the collections agency- including bank levy, garnishment, etc. But, as stated below, if there is interest accumulating on the debt, the amount could continue to compound and you may never be able to pay it off. The Slow Pay Motion would not "freeze" the accumulation of interest.

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Yes, they can turn it over to a debt collector. I presume this is a medical bill and that the debt collector is ACI or Fox?

I am not your attorney nor is any answer I may provide legal advice. You may contact me directly for legal advice only if you are a resident of Tennessee insofar as I only practice in Tennessee.

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