It’s going to take a while, but there are changes in store in the medical collections industry in the US. The three credit reporting giants – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion – are changing the way medical collections cases in the US are treated which will undoubtedly result in improved customer support. The changes stem from Eric Schneiderman, New York Attorney General, who spearheaded months of negotiations between the credit reporting firms and angry debtors.
A Change in Judge and Jury
Over the next three years, medical collections debtors can expect several reforms. Firstly, they will have the right to dispute inaccurate information on their credit reports. Credit bureaus will play judge and jury, but the trial is much more consumer friendly: Each of the credit reporting bureaus must use trained employees to review all pertinent information to each case, and make a determination.
It is quite an undertaking for the credit bureaus, who oversee the credit histories of some 200 million consumers in the US.
It is a significant improvement for the debtors. Previously, it was the creditors who played judge and jury. Upon submissions of disputes by debtors to the credit bureaus, creditors were presented with the information to confirm or deny its legitimacy.
The Resulting Changes in Medical Collections
As a result of the credit bureaus acting as the mediators, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion have agreed to wait 180 days before adding overdue medical bills to credit reports, allowing the necessary time for insurance payments to be considered. Once medical debts are paid by the debtor’s insurance, they are removed from the debtor’s credit report instead of remaining for up to seven years.
According to an article in Consumer Affairs, the credit bureaus will now distinguish consumer debts. For example, a $25,000 debt for emergency surgery will be distinguished from a $25,000 debt from a shopping spree.
Medical Collections With Instabill
Medical collections merchants have a variety of ways to accept payments from debtors with Instabill. We offer high quality credit card processing, but while not every merchant may qualify, Instabill also has ACH payment options available, which are very popular among collections merchants. Speak one-on-one with a merchant account representative about our features at 1-800-318-2713.