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Is post judgement interest allowed in Oregon on medical debt acquired while unconscious?

Portland, OR |

I received a summons for a medical bill. I was unconscious when admitted to hospital and “services” were rendered. Is interest allowed on medical debt that was not voluntarily acquired? How about after a judgment is made, can interest continue to accrue?

I found this and wonder if it is applicable;
Where parties contract contained no formula for calculating damages, amount of damages was not ascertainable and prejudg­ment interest was not allowed. Erickson Hardwood Co. v. North Pacific Lumber, 70 Or App 557, 690 P2d 1071 (1984), Sup Ct review denied

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Attorney answers 3

Posted

As a general principle, someone admitted to the hospital unconscious is liable for the cost of the medical services her or she received.

Just imagine the public-policy implications of a rule to the contrary, which would discourage hospitals from admitting unconscious persons brought to the emergency room for treatment!

Also as a general principle, interest accrues on judgments from the date of judgment at a rate set by statute. I am not licensed in Oregon, but cursory research turned up the Oregon statute linked below, which speaks to the question.

Not legal advice, just my two cents. I don't practice law in Oregon or hold Oregon licensure. Consult Oregon counsel to obtain legal advice tailored to your specific circumstance. I practice in Vermont ONLY.

L. Maxwell Taylor

L. Maxwell Taylor

Posted

The case law you quote does not appear to have any relevance to the facts you describe.

Posted

Interest is allowed in Oregon, by statute, at the rate of 9%. This can accrue from the time the bill becomes due, and continues to accrue post-judgment. If you believe that the creditor has incorrectly calculated the interest or is otherwise overcharging you, you should consult with a consumer attorney.

Michelle Freed is licensed in Oregon, Washington and Idaho only. Responses to questions posted in this forum do not constitute legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship.

Posted

Your situation is an implied contract, and interest is definitely due once the judgment is entered. I would guess it's also due before the judgment, but you should listen to anyone else on AVVO with more specific information. I would also guess the case you cited involved a commercial transaction, with a written contract, where the plaintiff failed to prove interest was contemplated.

The dialogue on this website does not constitute legal advice nor does it form any sort of attorney-client relationship.

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