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How To Repay Hospital Bills?


jackotheshadow

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If I have significant bills to repay, and I can't afford it, will it be ok if I just simply give the hospital what I can each month when I get the statement? I would really like to avoid trying to work out an actual repayment plan with them for various reasons which kind of boil down to them not understanding that the money I have is less than the money I make due to depression related things. If I talk to them to try to make them understand, they probably won't understand my situation and decide that I totally can afford a certain monthly payment each month, even though I won't be able to pull it off, and then they'll get p***** that I'm not paying them back to their standards and send debt collectors after me. But maybe if I just keep giving them money each month without saying anything to them, even if it's not a lot, they might just decide I'm doing what I can and keep sending me statements and otherwise leave me alone.

Do you have any experience with this? Any advice for me?

Thanks.

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I've had lots of issues with this, with hospitals, doctors' offices, etc.... In my experience, it really depends on the institution. For example, I have a couple of bills at a local hospital that date back to 2011. I started off paying on them each month, a small amount, and kept getting notices from them to pay the full amount, and finally, they sent it to collections. I didn't call them or write them or anything to set up payment arrangements, because I just COULDN'T, and even though I was paying on the bill, I guess since I wasn't paying enough, they sent it to collections.

I've had other places where I have done the same thing and, as long as I pay something, they don't bug me.

I think it's probably always BEST to call and let them know your situation. Know ahead of time what you can pay them and be sure and document every call you make. If you can only make a payment of $25/month, tell them that. Don't let them bully you into more if you don't have it. The hospital initially told me they COULDN'T accept less than $50/month, so I told them they would have to send it to collections then. When it went to collections, I refused to pay more than $25. Then, I found out that $5 of that was going to the collection agency (and they hadn't told me), so I stopped paying them and told the hospital that if they wanted their money they would have to take the $25/month or nothing.

I'm now paying $25/month.

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If I have significant bills to repay, and I can't afford it, will it be ok if I just simply give the hospital what I can each month when I get the statement? I would really like to avoid trying to work out an actual repayment plan with them for various reasons which kind of boil down to them not understanding that the money I have is less than the money I make due to depression related things. If I talk to them to try to make them understand, they probably won't understand my situation and decide that I totally can afford a certain monthly payment each month, even though I won't be able to pull it off, and then they'll get p***** that I'm not paying them back to their standards and send debt collectors after me. But maybe if I just keep giving them money each month without saying anything to them, even if it's not a lot, they might just decide I'm doing what I can and keep sending me statements and otherwise leave me alone.

Do you have any experience with this? Any advice for me?

Thanks.

You can't draw blood from a stone.

The health care system is a scam, don't bother paying it as I've never payed my bills from being institutionalized and nothing came of it and it's been 6 years since.

Edited by muffinman123
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Wow, muffinman, you are incredibly lucky. I was sued for my daughter's ER bills 2 years later even though they were supposed to provide me with HCAP paperwork. My credit's been ruined because of medical bills I couldn't pay.

Jackotheshadow, I don't really have any answers but I'd say that if you are making some kind of payments and not receiving collections notices just keep doing what you can. I don't know if your income is low enough to qualify for HCAP or not---it's basically for below poverty---but if your income is really low then I'd suggest looking into it. It will only go back two years though.

Best Wishes.

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