I need help regarding real life stuff (Credit, finances, blah blah blah)

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 10, 2012 4:08 AM GMT
    Sometimes I think I have life all figured out but I come to realize most of the time I don't.

    A couple of months ago I had pneumonia. I have pretty crappy health insurance but it's still insurance. After being in and out of the hospital a bunch of bills eventually sprung up on me.

    I payed 3 out of 6 of them off, but the other 3 were very expensive ($130, $200, and $300). I called the office and explained that I would like to set up a pay plan, and being that I pay the majority of bills at home and am in college it's hard for me to afford much of anything at all. I'm barely scraping by as it is. They set me up for $25 a month for each bill (being $75 in all), and even though I asked to go lower they kept denying me.

    To make a long story short I couldn't pay it this month. They said debt collection agencies weren't looking at me.... yet, but I'm still pretty worried that it's going to screw up my credit. I'm almost done paying off a loan from the bank (car loan) so that should make my credit go back up, but I'm worried that these bills are going to ruin my life if I can't pay them off.

    Does anyone know how badly this will affect me in the long run or if I'm truly on a set time? I wish some other adults here in town could help me here but everyone is living on welfare and food stamps and can't tell me the difference between a debit card and a credit card so I'm pretty confused.

    Thanks RJ family icon_biggrin.gif
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    Oct 10, 2012 4:16 AM GMT
    It will only affect your credit score if your debt gets sold off to a collections agency. If the hospital is pretty easy going and allows you to miss a month or two, then your credit score will not be affected.
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    Oct 10, 2012 4:29 AM GMT
    Usually, as long as you pay something, even if it's not what they want, they can't or wont turn you over...but trust they will threaten you, but they sell your account to collections agencies for pennies on the dollar, so it's best to keep you if your paying them more than the agency would.
    Been on both sides;collectors normally get bank getting full payment, the better at it they are the more they make.
    Just buckle down and work what you can, try not to stress...a lot of old fucks like me have been there and back a couple times.
    Always a way to get what you want or need without the greatest of credit scores, beleive it or not sometime having a low credit score can be a blessing. What did I think I was going to do with a 40 foot Bay Liner?
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    Oct 10, 2012 5:00 AM GMT
    xrichx saidIt will only affect your credit score if your debt gets sold off to a collections agency. If the hospital is pretty easy going and allows you to miss a month or two, then your credit score will not be affected.


    I hope they're lenient. Thank you, Rich!

    dustin_K_tx saidUsually, as long as you pay something, even if it's not what they want, they can't or wont turn you over...but trust they will threaten you, but they sell your account to collections agencies for pennies on the dollar, so it's best to keep you if your paying them more than the agency would.
    Been on both sides;collectors normally get bank getting full payment, the better at it they are the more they make.
    Just buckle down and work what you can, try not to stress...a lot of old fucks like me have been there and back a couple times.
    Always a way to get what you want or need without the greatest of credit scores, beleive it or not sometime having a low credit score can be a blessing. What did I think I was going to do with a 40 foot Bay Liner?


    This certainly makes me feel better! Thanks, Dustin. Maybe I'll just send them $10 each or whatever I can pay, really. As long as I'm giving them something maybe they'll get off my back?

    How bad do you think this will/is hurting my credit? Anything to ruin my life in the long run? I guess I'm just kinda worried.
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    Oct 10, 2012 5:20 AM GMT
    JumpMan_Josh said
    How bad do you think this will/is hurting my credit? Anything to ruin my life in the long run? I guess I'm just kinda worried.


    more than likely, not much...going on the fact if it is a hospital, I doubt they even report to credit agencies.
    You have to pay to belong to a credit rating company and they are not going to do that, because hospitals don't give credit, so have no need for them or pay them.
    A collection company is a whole different story; they rely on the information provided by such rating companies and all of them share information, so never put you're work number down on credit application or share anything you don't want to, no matter what bull they feed you, it's illegal and they know it.
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    Oct 10, 2012 11:58 AM GMT
    A total debt of $600 may seem a lot to you but to the hospital it's nothing. As long as you send in something each month - even if it's less than the agreed amount - it won't be worth their time to refer it to an agency.
  • LuckyGuyKC

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    Oct 10, 2012 12:02 PM GMT
    Just pay them something each month with a note that states your intention to return to $25 per month as soon as possible and then make sure you do. These guys do not want to send you to collections .... that costs them money ... especially for such a small amount owed.

    You are going to be fine.
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    Oct 10, 2012 12:04 PM GMT
    Usually, it won't effect your credit until it's 90 days past due.

    However, one thing I think you might check is certain assistance programs for people with low income, I would call the hospital and ask for them to refer you to some of those programs.

    Also, like the guy above said, send them $5 with a note that your intention is to catch up as soon as possible. This shows that you have an intent to pay.
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    Oct 10, 2012 12:11 PM GMT
    Being in Accounts Payable, even at hard cash flow times, paying SOMETHING is always better than nothing and then defaulting. It delays your default status and collection, thus keeps your credit being affected minimally if not, other than just being late.

    Sometimes, talking to creditors you owe (whoever is sending you the actual bill), and explaining hardship, they can give you extensions on when you can make the payment to eventually get caught up.

    But remember, they'll take anything you send them even if it is not the agreed amount.
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    Oct 10, 2012 1:10 PM GMT
    actually, NO. medical bills do not get reported to credit agencies. I could be wrong but I think there is a law involved there somewhere. but if it does get sold to a collections agency, then yeah, they might. Keep in mind the difference between a "Collections department" and a "Collections Agency", a Dept is within the original deptor and an Agency is an outside company that purchases the account. each one has a different set of laws.


    Listen to Dustin and the others. as long as you are paying SOMETHING you are going to be fine. there have been court cases where the Indebted said that they can only pay $$$ this much and the Debtor said 'No we want $$$$$$ this much" and the judges said, "you just turned down money that they can pay.... DEBT ANNULLED.... JUDGEMENT FOR THE INDEBTED" and the debt was wiped cleaned by the courts.
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    Oct 10, 2012 1:20 PM GMT
    Like everyone has said... pay SOMETHING...

    Also remember... you don't HAVE to go to college full time.. if you re struggling consider going part time for a semester or 2 to pick up extra hours and shifts or another job to pay things down.

    I feel like students ALWAYS feel they have to go FULL time...
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    Oct 10, 2012 1:51 PM GMT
    If you really need sound legal advice, contact a couple of law schools in Alabama--e.g., University of Alabama Law School, Cumberland School of Law (Samford University), etc. Many law schools have "clinics" staffed by full-fledged lawyers and law students that can provide legal advice to people who can't afford a lawyer. That would be a good start.

  • Oct 10, 2012 7:00 PM GMT
    Communication is key! Especially in situations like you've described, stay in touch even if to just call them and tell them you are sending a payment. I know it seems redundant to call them every month, however you will "stay on their good" side by staying in touch and like others have said, they will be less likely to sell your account to a collection agency.
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    Oct 10, 2012 7:04 PM GMT
    Write a letter to the hospital explaining you financial situation and see if they can write it off. Hospitals can write off a lot of bills and most will be glad to do it if you write and explain your situation.

    When I was in heart failure I had $1500 in tests done. I could not pay it and I sent a letter to the hospital and 3 weeks later I got a letter saying that the entire bill was negated!

    Good luck!
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    Oct 10, 2012 7:08 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]TankerMedic said[/cite]actually, NO. medical bills do not get reported to credit agencies. I could be wrong but I think there is a law involved there somewhere. but if it does get sold to a collections agency, then yeah, they might. Keep in mind the difference between a "Collections department" and a "Collections Agency", a Dept is within the original deptor and an Agency is an outside company that purchases the account. each one has a different set of laws.


    In Illinois, unpaid medical bills get turned over to an agency, I had a few, but it did not seem to affect my credit score all that much. The bills were about the same amounts as Josh's. It may differ from state to state.
  • kuroshiro

    Posts: 786

    Oct 10, 2012 7:09 PM GMT
    It's a medical bill so even if you pay $1 per bill they can't do anything... you're making an honest effort to knock it down. Just so long as your account stays "current" is all that matters.
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    Oct 10, 2012 9:29 PM GMT
    First, show them some ID. icon_biggrin.gif

    Even if this goes to a collection agency or effects your credit report, it only shows up for something like 7 years. Obviously, you still don't want it, but it isn't permanent.
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    Oct 10, 2012 10:27 PM GMT
    Man... after reading your dilemma ... I honestly can't answer it, but i'm so glad i don't live in the states. We do have universal health insurance here.... even though i hardly use it, i would have a hard time paying bills like that. It's just not fair or right....push harder for health care.... good luck bud
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    Oct 10, 2012 11:58 PM GMT
    At age 20. You are asking the right questions.

    Educate yourself via these four websites

    www.mymoney.gov
    www.creditkarma.com
    www.fool.com
    www.bankrate.com