Even if you work for one of the Big Three in Michigan and have good medical insurance, it may not be enough to cover all of your bills. Hospital stays and extended treatments can get expensive, quickly. You may also be out of work for a while if you’re sick or injured. All too often, bills go unpaid and end up in the hands of collection agencies or debt collectors. These delinquent accounts then show up on your credit reports and hurt your credit score. Is there any way to remove these medical collections and save your credit rating?
The newest version of the FICO is called FICO 9. Medical bills in debt collection are weighed less heavily than other types of unpaid debt. However, these negative items still send out red flags to future lenders. This can make it harder for Michigan residents to get new credit lines or loans.
Tips for Michiganders on How to Handle Medical Collections on Credit Reports
First of all, if a medical bill has gone to a debt collector by mistake, you can request that it be removed from your credit report immediately. The same goes for expired debt. In Michigan, medical collection accounts may only remain on your credit reports for seven years after the date of the first delinquency. Still, it’s up to you to keep track of when a debt is due to expire. You should also check your credit reports regularly to make sure old debt goes away when it’s expired.
If you do find that medical bills have been reported as unpaid by mistake, you will need to send a written dispute to the correct credit bureau(s). Along with your letter, you should send any supporting documents. The credit bureau will have 30 days in which to conduct a reasonable investigation of your dispute. After 30 days have passed, if you receive no response, you have the right to take legal action. Or, if your claim is denied in the face of concrete evidence, you can also file a suit against the credit bureau(s) under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. You can even use a free credit repair attorney so it costs you nothing to file a lawsuit.
The same is true for older accounts that have gone to medical collections. If you find expired debt on your credit reports, you can dispute these in writing as well. You may have to write additional letters and stay in communication with the credit bureaus until the matter is resolved. Luckily, Michiganders are pretty good at not giving up.
For Michiganders Who Just Can’t Wait for Medical Collections to Expire
For consumers who have legitimate medical collections that aren’t close to expiring there are a couple of options. One of these involves negotiating with a debt collector. The other requires asking a favor from the debt collector. Therefore, these are not foolproof plans, but they may be worth trying.
- Pay for Delete: Some debt collectors will stop reporting on paid accounts, but they aren’t required to do so. Yet, some consumers have used payments as a bargaining chip. They agree to pay a certain amount, and in exchange, the debt collector removes the debt collection account from their credit reports. Of course, this option requires a great deal of caution. Everything must be in writing.
- Goodwill Deletion: If you pay off an account with a debt collector, you can simply ask them (in writing) to have the debt removed from your credit reports. Again, they may not be willing to do this for you, but it doesn’t hurt to try.
Finally, if your credit reports are plagued with medical collections that aren’t supposed to be there, getting them removed is within your rights under the FCRA. Also, in Michigan, you don’t have to take on the credit bureaus on your own. You can get a free credit repair and be confident that everything will be taken care of – legally and as quickly as possible.
Free Credit Repair in Michigan
Don’t let medical 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 without charging them anything out of pocket.
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 (248) 353-2882 or sending him a message through our contact page. Or, for more information, please visit our website at www.creditrepairlawyersAM.com.