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Medical Debt Collection Statute of Limitations California and Dealing with Your Debt Collectors by hkksew3563rd


									Medical bills may actually come back and haunt you. Sometimes you may not receive
any bills from the hospital you went to in California and you thought you had paid
them all until a couple of years later you receive more bills from the very same
hospital that you thought you had already paid off. If this happens you may want to
check the medical debt collection statute of limitations California to see whether your
creditors – your doctors or hospital – may actually proceed with legal
actions to force you to pay your debts. But first, you may want to find out exactly
what is a statute of limitations.
Typically, a statute of limitations is a period of time where a grievance for certain
causes of action may be filed. Basically it is the window period that allows any form
of legal action to be taken if there is any cause for grievance or complaint. After the
window period, any legal course of action may be considered as void by the courts if
you use the window period as your defense. When it comes to medical debt collection
statute of limitations California, it is basically the window period within which your
hospital and doctors may proceed with legal action against you so that you may be
forced to pay up.
Medical debt collection limitations in California are 4 years on written agreements
and 2 years on oral agreements. Usually expensive and extensive medical treatments
may require the written permission of the patient, the guardian or the next of kin. This
is where the forms your doctors request that you sign to authorize a particular
treatment or surgery comes in play. Collection of payment for the treatment that you
signed for may take place within the 4 year statute. If the four years are up, your
hospital may be less likely to attempt any legal action against you. You may argue that
you have not been given any bills after your treatment but the hospital may use that
argument against you and state that it may be your responsibility to follow up on the
bills after your treatment.
Of course, the expiry of the statute of limitations may not mean that you may be
released from the debt totally. In some cases, your creditor may actually proceed with
filing a lawsuit against you in the hope that you have no idea that the statute of
limitations has expired or when they themselves are not aware of the expiry. So if you
find yourself in such situation, it may be a good idea for you to make sure that the
statute of limitations really has expired before you use that argument for your defense.
Generally you may have to raise the issue yourself as the courts are supposed to be
neutral and may not argue on your behalf.
The California debt collection for medical debts usually starts 30 days after the last
payment. This is why it is advisable that you keep your own records of every phone
conversation, copies of correspondence and dates and times of payments made. For
instance, you might have received full medical treatment 3 years ago but the last
payment you have made to your creditor was only 6 months ago. Therefore, the
statute of limitations actually started 6 months and not 3 years ago. This is why it may
be important that you keep all the receipts and proofs of payments because if you ever
need to use the statute of limitations argument in court, you may be required to prove
it. Keeping your own medical files organized might help you a lot in the future as you
can be prepared for any surprise bills from your doctors.
It may also be a good idea for you to get every single verbal agreement to be put in
writing because it may be easier for you to prove if you ever need to dispute the
claims from your creditor after the expiry of the statute of limitations. This includes
any negotiations on a repayment plan whether it was from a face-to-face or phone
conversation. It may also be wiser for you to clarify multiple debts as you may not
want to confuse one creditor from the other in court.
Generally, the statute of limitations is designed to protect both the creditor and debtor
should any dispute come up after the expiry date. However, not many people are
aware that there is a statute of limitations for the collection of medical debts and
hospitals may use that to their advantage. So it is advisable that you brush up on your
knowledge about the statute of limitations so that you know your own rights as a

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