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Can you be taken to court for unpaid ER bills? PIOG

Posted by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 5:12 PM
  • 8 Replies



Can you?  In the last week I have received 1-2 phone calls a day from a debt collector and just received a letter/statement in the mail this week. I generally don't answer phone numbers that I don't recognize, but I thought it was a friend of mine. The lady goes on to tell me that she's calling on behalf of this company for an ER visit I have January of 2010. Why haven't I paid? Why haven't I contacted them? I do my best not to get upset, but this lady was nasty. She went on to tell me that she was going to contact my employer to verify my employment - um - no you're not! I work for family and they aren't going to tell you jack!!! I also told her that they weren't going to garnish my wages like they think they can so there wasn't any reason to call my job. She said something and I lost it. She told me that they could take me to court and I would have to pay all of the court fees and so on. That as of right now this isn't on my credit but will be. I ended up hanging up on her.

They are charging an additional $222 on top of the $888 that the hospital originally charged me. I asked for a document in the mail, she tells me "No. I'm not sending you anything in the mail that's going to cost us money. I can email it." Fine!! I waited for over an hour and nothing so I called the place back from the number she called me from. A new lady says that the first lady wasn't allowed to send it after she talked to the supervisor - it's on hold - they're going to send a letter and the supervisor is going to send a letter to my email. Whatever. I talked to a few people and none of them have been taken to court or anything over unpaid medical bills. I have been to the ER 3 times in the last 6 years with no insurance (while I was pregnant I was on Medicaid and went three times all pregnancy related) and they were for things that I couldn't wait until a walk-in doctor opened or until I could find an affordable doctor that I could pay out of pocket.

I've been ignoring the phone calls - I added them to my contact list so that I don't accidentally answer it. I feel bad, sure, but so many things have happened over the years and I've honestly forgotten about it. Now for me to attempt to pay $10 a week even is a lot. By now the hospital and staff has already been paid for this bill - so I'm tempted to just keep ignoring it.


by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 5:12 PM
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Replies (1-8):
goddess99
by Michelle on Jul. 31, 2013 at 5:24 PM

 I don't understand why Medicaid didn't pay. If you weren't married at the time, the father should be paying it through the cs.

Garnet_Iris11
by Member on Jul. 31, 2013 at 5:34 PM
Sorry, didnt explain that well LOL

This visit was prior to my pregnancy and I was eligible for medical at the time.


Quoting goddess99:

 I don't understand why Medicaid didn't pay. If you weren't married at the time, the father should be paying it through the cs.

Spoiled_Blonde
by Member on Aug. 1, 2013 at 12:02 AM

No, they can't take you to court. The hospital just writes it off. That doesn't mean they won't sell it to a collection agency to see if they can get the money from you. Don't admit that it's your bill, and make them send you something. They have to send you paperwork, they can't put it on hold. I know in Oregon where I am after 5 years of not paying a bill you are legally not responsible for it anymore. Some states it's only 1 year! Check it out and see what your state is. They can't contact you if you are not liable anymore. I was reading a book that told me this. Can't remember the name of it though... =( Hope that helped =)

SlapItHigh
by on Aug. 1, 2013 at 12:10 AM

I don't know but I hope not!

my4loves4
by Member on Aug. 1, 2013 at 1:20 AM

they have taken me to court several times, idk why, I'm a stay at home mom its not like i have any to give.. but they took my mom  to court for hers, and the are garnishing 75 dollars a week!!!! Like you she couldnt even afford 10... The system is messed up and will do whatever it takes to get its money even if it leaves you fucked.

preacherskid
by Member on Aug. 1, 2013 at 10:24 AM

If they follow the proper steps they can take you to court and they can garnish your wages.  I work in a payroll office and have filled out garnishment stuff from the hospital, and my mother has had her wages garnished for my dad's medical bills before because he had no job and they went to collections.  Debt collectors are only able to say something if they will follow through on it- they cannot make empty threats to get you to do something.  If the bill is owed and you don't pay them they will go to court with it and have garnishment ordered.

Janet
by Ruby Member on Aug. 3, 2013 at 6:28 PM

I think it depends on what state you live in.

cookinmommyof1
by Bronze Member on Aug. 3, 2013 at 6:38 PM
Yes they can take you to court. Its just another way to collect a debt.
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