Medical bills are often a source of anxiety and frustration. If you have a large medical bill, it can be difficult to pay off. If you’re recovering from an operation, you likely can’t return to work for a while.
While you’re in this situation, that medical bill seems to loom over you. You find yourself wondering not only about how to pay it, but how it can affect things like your credit score.
If you’re wondering how medical debt affects your credit score, then you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, we’ll cover the basics of how medical bills affect your credit and ways you can resolve it.
How Medical Bills Go to Collections
If your medical expenses go unpaid for a long enough period, doctors will eventually send them to collections. From there, collections will attempt to get you to pay the bills. If they remain unpaid, then like any other unpaid bill, they will negatively impact your credit score.
There may be a few options available to you that would prevent our bills from going to collections.
For example, when your medical bills come, one of the first things you should do is call your insurance provider. Determine whether they can pay the bill or at least a portion of it.
How Medical Bills Affect Your Credit Score
As said above, unpaid bills will negatively affect your credit score. They can make it difficult for you to get credit. Furthermore, they can increase the interest rates on your credit.
However, while unpaid medical bills do harm your credit score, they may not hurt it so much as other bills. Many newer credit bureau scoring models don’t weigh medical bills as heavily as other debt.
Examples of these newer models include VantageScore® 3.0 and 4.0, along with the FICO 9 model. The FICO 9 is the most recent model produced by FICO.
However, not everybody uses the most recent models. Many still use FICO 8, which weighs medical bills as heavily as any other bill.
Regardless of which scoring model credit bureaus use, most understand that medical expenses are different than other expenses. Because they involve insurance companies and other complications, the three main credit bureaus offer a 180 day grace period.
Essentially, this means you have 180 days to pay off your medical expenses before they start taking a toll on your credit score.
Ways to Pay Your Bill
There are several tactics to making sure your bills don’t affect your credit. First, contact the provider about payment plans or debt forgiveness.
You should also make sure your bills are 100% accurate. Many times, bills include services you haven’t received. If so, contact your provider to get those expenses dropped.
If all else fails, it may be wise to take out a personal loan to cover your medical expenses.
Apply for an Echo Line of Credit
If you require a personal loan to pay your medical bills, apply for an Echo line of credit today! Our requirements are straightforward: you must be of legal age, reside in a state we currently serve, have a source of income, and have an active checking account.
If you’re in need of emergency funds right now, apply for a line of credit with Echo Credit today.