How Can I Resolve a Medical Bill Sent to Collections Due to a Billing Error?

Question from Aa: So I have a 9,000 dollar medical bill that is related to a NICU stay from 4 years ago. This bill was turned over to a collection agency without my knowledge. It appears there was a billing error as my insurance company claims they were never billed. They would have covered 100 percent of the cost. I have tried to dispute it but without success. What should I do?


It’s unfortunate to hear about your situation. Dealing with medical bills can be stressful, especially when they’re sent to collections without your knowledge. Here are some steps you can take to resolve this issue:

1. Contact Your Insurance Company

Firstly, reach out to your insurance company. If they claim they were never billed, ask them to provide a written statement to this effect. This can serve as evidence that the medical provider made a billing error.

2. Contact the Medical Provider

Next, contact the medical provider who originally issued the bill. Provide them with the statement from your insurance company and ask them to correct the billing error. They should then bill your insurance company directly.

3. Contact the Collection Agency

Inform the collection agency about the billing error and provide them with copies of the correspondence with your insurance company and medical provider. Request them to halt collection activities until the matter is resolved.

4. Document Everything

Keep a record of all your communications with the insurance company, medical provider, and collection agency. This includes letters, emails, and notes from phone conversations.

5. Seek Legal Advice

If the collection agency continues to pursue the debt, you may want to consult with a lawyer who specializes in consumer law. They can guide you on the best course of action to take.

6. Consider a Payment Plan or Loan

If all else fails and you’re unable to get the bill covered by insurance, you might want to consider setting up a payment plan with the collection agency. Alternatively, you could look into getting an installment loan to cover the cost.

According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, it’s important to understand the terms of any payment plan or loan before you agree to it. Make sure you can afford the monthly payments and that the interest rate is reasonable.

Remember, it’s crucial to act quickly when dealing with collection agencies. The longer the bill remains unpaid, the more it can negatively impact your credit score.

I hope these steps help you navigate this challenging situation.

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