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There is something wrong with the American healthcare system. The United States is the only industrialized nation where health emergencies routinely lead to bankruptcy. Of course, many people avoid bankruptcy, but are still plagued with medical bills for years, even decades, after the original healthcare disaster. Getting sick or being injured can keep people from purchasing homes, buying automobiles, and even qualifying for certain jobs or the best insurance rates. That is because medical collections can impact your credit score for years and years.
Are Medical Collections On Your Credit Score?
Many people are under the belief that medical debt is not reported to the three credit reporting agencies. This is based on a truth, but is not actually true. Most healthcare providers do not report past-due or slow-pay accounts to the credit reporting bureaus. They do, however, frequently turn these accounts over to collection agencies. Once a collection agency has had the debt for six months, they can report the debt to the credit bureaus. Prior to 2017, they did not even have to wait six months to report the debt. In addition, even if the medical debt is paid, it can remain on your credit report for a period of up to seven years. The seven-year period is not traced to the time of the illness or injury, but to the time that the account became delinquent and was reported for that delinquency, which may mean decades after the original debt was accrued.
Removing Medical Collections from Credit Report
While it can take seven years for medical debt to “fall off” of your credit report, it may be possible to remove medical collections before that period of time. There are often errors in medical collections. These errors are especially likely if there are multiple payers for a medical charge, which is the case when insurance is or should be covering part of the medical charges. In many instances, medical bills go into collections when the insurance company has already paid the negotiated rate for the services in question. Successfully disputing a medical collection with the credit bureaus can result in an updated credit report and a much higher credit score.
Get Help Removing Medical Collections
Unfortunately, that process can be very daunting for the average consumer. Many people do not know where to start the dispute process or what type of proof they will need to be effective. At Square One Credit, our goal is to help you get the credit you deserve, including helping you get medical collections removed from your credit.