Medical bills can sometimes be pretty high. The value of medical bills usually depends on the severity of the situation or illness or the health insurance situation. But medical bills cannot be ran away from. As a result, refunding your portion of the costs can sometimes seem overwhelming or sometimes impossible, but, what happens if you do not pay medical bills? Below are some ways that can help you out to avoid amplifying problems of not paying medical bills.
Pay Attention to Your Bills
It can be a lot overwhelming when the temptation of ignoring your medical services comes, ignoring them can be a big mistake. No matter how unsightly, never ignore a bill that you receive. Not dealing with your medical bill can cause you to incur further issues, such as:
- Past due charges and penalties, thus increasing your bill
- Handing of your account over to collections
- Lowering of your credit score due to unpaid bill
- Potential cancellation of your insurance plan
- Non-service at a physician’s office the bill is from
Contact Your Medical Biller
Never delay in contacting the billing party whenever you get a bill that is larger than you can afford or that is unexpected. One of the crucial steps to help pay up medical bills is to establish contact with the medical billing party and it also shows that you are willing to work with them to resolve the payment accordingly. There is a possibility of your being sent to collection, have services suspended or be charged an abundance of late fees when they do not hear from you.
Negotiate Your Bills
A step many people don’t realize they can do with their medical billers is negotiating their billed amounts. You can do this in several different ways:
- Ask into programs the hospital or doctor’s office may have to reduce bill amounts in accordance with income. Often, you can find low-income reductions available with insurances and medical offices.
- If you don’t have insurance, you can negotiate your bill directly with the hospital or doctor’s office just as an insurance company would. Your medical bills are typically going to be sent with essentially the MSRP rate (most suggested retail price), but if you speak with your biller you can generally get a reduced rate.
Read Your Bill Line by Line
Be sure to look at each individual line of service being billed especially if it is a hospital bill or multiple services provided from one doctor’s office. If one of the lines of service doesn’t make sense, is duplicated, or seems exorbitant be sure to bring this up with your biller to see about getting it removed or the price reduced.
Check In to Medical Debt Forgiveness
You can some state or federal programs to help lower or eliminate any medical debt you may have. You can check with websites like benefits.gov in order to see if you may qualify for an assistance program or Google local programs or nonprofits in your state which may be of assistance to you.
Request a Payment Plan
Most medical creditors are willing to put payment plans in place so that you can satisfy your debt over time if you can’t afford to pay in full right away. You’ll have an easier chance of establishing a plan you can afford if you contact your medical biller as soon as you receive the bill instead of delaying dealing with it. Also, if the biller does not have any payment plan options through them, there are credit companies such as Care Credit that may be able to help. Care Credit works like a credit card, but can only be used to finance and pay for medical services.