November 2, 2007, Newsletter Issue #100: Do Not Ignore Your Bill

Tip of the Week

As soon as a clinician interacts with you, the billing process begins. However, depending on your health care insurance, income status, bills, and resources, your final bill may be negotiable. You first need to take the correct steps.
Keep in mind that if your case involves a car accident or a workers compensation issue, then by law the person that hit you or your place of business where the accident occurred the “workers comp” incident, will get billed first. This means you have an extended period of time to figure out how you are going to pay your bill. More and more medical facilities have hired collection attorneys on a contingency basis to file judgments against people that do not pay their bills. This will go on your credit history.
Typically, you will receive at least three statements from the facility before any action is taken against you. In some situations, the medical facilities will file a judgment against you, so if you have acquired any assets you will not be able to liquidate them until all outstanding medical bills are paid. On the other hand, some medical facilities that do not have the means to hire a collections attorney will write off any unpaid bills as “bad debt” if no action has taken place in six months.

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