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Late Payment

Multiple Medical Bills Appearing on Credit Report

Dear Experian,

I am seeing that each time I go to the doctor and I do not pay those bills on time, the bill ends up on my credit report. This has resulted in 10 or more delinquencies, some of which are less than $50 each. How do I consolidate all these bills into one?

- JDY

Dear JDY,

Unfortunately, you may not be able to consolidate these medical collection accounts. Different services provided on different dates would likely be considered different debts and so would be reported as separate accounts.

How Medical Collection Accounts Appear on Your Credit Report

Once you become delinquent and the debt is sold to a collection agency, you run the risk of having it appear on your credit report, even if it is a relatively small amount owed. Collection accounts remain on the credit report for seven years from the original delinquency date.

Paying Off Medical Collection Accounts Can Help Your Credit Scores

Your best option is to contact the creditor to discuss your options. If the account has not been sold to an outside collection agency, the medical provider or providers may be willing to work with you to arrange a payment plan for your existing medical collection accounts. If the debt is now owned by a separate collection company, you will likely have to contact that company directly to arrange for payment to be made.

Each debt will be reported as paid once the amount owed has been repaid in full. Paying a collection account in full does not immediately remove it from your credit history. However, many of the newer credit scoring models no longer count paid collections as part of the score.

Eventually, each collection will be deleted from your credit report.

Contact Medical Office to Discuss Payment Options Right Away

To avoid having future medical bills appear on your credit report, you should contact the doctor's office or medical facility to establish a payment plan as soon as you receive a bill.

Thanks for asking.
The "Ask Experian" team

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