March 31, 2022
ACA, the Association of Credit and Collection Professionals is advocating on behalf of members to show the repercussions that delaying medical debt credit reporting and removing paid medical bills from credit reports will have on medical providers, consumers obtaining credit, data furnishers, collection agencies and the overall economy. “We have serious concerns about the consequences of your decision to change the timeframe for including unpaid consumer debt on a credit report and to not include certain unpaid debt owed to medical providers, some of whom stood or stand on the front lines of the pandemic,” said ACA CEO Scott Purcell in a letter to the CRAs which was also sent to Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director, Rohit Chopra.
According to a press release from the CRAs, the time period before unpaid medical debt collection accounts would appear on a consumer’s credit report will be increased from six months to one year. Beginning the first half of 2023, Equifax, Experian and TansUnion will also no longer include medical debt under at least $ 500 on credit reports. The changes will remove nearly 70% of medical debt in collection accounts from consumer credit reports.
ACA outlined these specific concerns in the letter to the CRAs:
- Changing the time period for reporting from six months to one year will cause consumers to miss insurance deadlines.
- Setting an arbitrary threshold for debt will harm the smallest medical providers and limit access to care, especially in rural and underserved areas.
- Regulations and policy already address the issues trying to be solved in a vacuum by the CRAs.
- This is a slippery slope for credit providers who will not have the correct information about consumer obligations and a full credit profile.
CCS supports ACA’s stand on these changes and has taken measures to ensure that your accounts will continue to be worked effectively. To discuss additional options such as our first party collection services at CFM Roanoke, please feel free to contact us.