Incredibly good health care is available in Ohio. In fact, the Cleveland Clinic has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the nation’s top hospital in cardiology and heart surgery and the second best hospital overall. If you’re sick or injured in the Buckeye State, at least you know that you’re in good hands. The only problem is that this great health care comes at a price. Medical bills can wreck your budget, and it’s even worse when you’re charged for a bill that you don’t owe. Disputing medical bills that appear on your credit reports in Ohio can be difficult.
Disputing Medical Bills before they Show Up on Your Credit Report
Ohio residents are protected by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), a federal statute. This means that you have the right to dispute items on your credit reports that shouldn’t be there. However, disputing medical bills is much easier if you do it before a debt is reported to the credit bureaus.
First of all, even if you have very good health insurance, don’t assume that your coverage will pay for everything. Before deciding that a medical bill is inaccurate, double check your Explanation of Benefits (EOB) from your health care provider. You can also use your EOB to dispute charges that you know should be covered by insurance.
If an unpaid medical bill that you wish to dispute goes to a debt collector or collection agency, try to resolve the debt as quickly as possible in order to prevent it from being reported. After digging into the matter, if you realize that you actually do owe the bill, a fast payment to the debt collector or collection agency may prevent the debt from ending up on your credit reports.
On the other hand, if you’re still sure that the medical bill is inaccurate, or if you never even received the bill that you’re being hounded to pay, there are options to pursue. You can request validation from the debt collector so that they’ll be forced to prove that the debt is yours. Then, if nothing gets resolved, you file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
How Ohio Consumers can Dispute Medical Bills on their Credit Reports
If an unpaid medical bill shows up on your credit reports, it can be removed if you can prove that the bill was charged in error. If you do absolutely nothing, like other unpaid debt, medical bills will stay on your credit reports for seven years after the first date of delinquency. Under the new FICO 9 scoring system, medical collection accounts carry less weight than they do with previous models. Still, having any type of collection on your credit reports hurts your credit score.
As a hardworking resident of the great state of Ohio, you deserve fair and accurate credit reports and the credit rating that you’ve actually earned. If your attempts at disputing medical bills haven’t been successful, you don’t have to continue your efforts alone. You can get a FREE credit repair lawyer to help you get your credit back on track.
Don’t let debt collections and errors on your credit reports bring your credit score down. At Credit Repair Lawyers of America, we’ve been cleaning up credit reports for consumers since 2008 for free.
Let’s start the conversation about what we can do for your credit. Set up your free consultation today by calling Attorney Gary Nitzkin at (888)293-2882 or emailing him at [email protected].