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<p>We have a medical bill, and a couple of months ago I called to negotiate a bit of a payment plan, no interest. That went fine. I gave the woman our credit card info over the phone for them to charge ASAP for the first payment. She told me the payments would be charged the 20th of the month after the initial payment. Sounds good.</p>
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<p>I waited for the first payment to be charged. Waited a week. It didn't show up. I called them back and the person I talked to said it would be charged within 3 days "please call back Friday if you want to check, it will be charged by then." I waited until Friday and it didn't show up on my account. I called back and this person said they couldn't promise when it would be charged.</p>
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<p>Now, maybe I'm being stupid, but I really wanted to make sure it was charged promptly. I am trying to plan my money here. There's nothing I hate worse than thinking I have money that I don't really have. If it were a check, I'd have it in the register but it's not. I realize the obvious answer is "make a note of it" but see, that's the point, everyone else takes their money on time, why can't they? I am spending way too much time chasing after them and basically begging them to take my money.</p>
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<p>I'm not even done yet. In October, I noticed they didn't charge me on the 20th. I waited a few days. I called. They said the charge didn't go through. Huh? It went through last month just fine, and believe me, the card is current and I never carry a balance. There was $14,500 worth of credit line to cover a $150 payment. The card had not expired. But, whatever, I asked her to hold on while I put my hand on another card, but then she said "well, why don't we try to charge it again?" OK. But when I realized she didn't mean "right now, while I have you on the phone and can give you the result" I wanted to try another card, but she said let's just try this one, call back in 3 days. Sigh.</p>
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<p>3 days later the charge went through. So that was month 2 of payments were they couldn't get it together.</p>
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<p>Now it's November. By this time, the 20th of the month is like a major day in my head - no chance of forgetting this stupid bill anymore. Did they charge the 20th? No they did not. I waited a few days. Then my husband got the mail and there was a letter, dated October 14th (so, well over a month ago) saying they tried to charge the card and failed, please call them. Huh? Unfortunately I forgot to call (that was Wednesday) and then it was the holidays. So now there's 1 day left in November and I am probably going to have to roll this payment into December and pay twice in the month.</p>
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<p>I have called the number 4 times today thus far and I keep going to voice mail. I haven't left a message yet - same thing, I just don't want to be waiting for THEM and risk forgetting. You know? Like, if I call and leave a message for them, the next action is theirs. So it's easy for me to take it off my mind because I am not doing anything, just waiting. So I keep hanging up, waiting 20 or 30 minutes, and calling again.</p>
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<p>So, what would you do? Reward them by paying in full and never dealing with them again? I'd have to dip into my underfunded emergency fund to do that, plus of course not save a dime including for things that must be saved for (like our next heating fuel fillup or our next insurance payment). I'd rather pay $150 a month as agreed. On time.</p>
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<p>Or perhaps when I finally get them on the phone, I should deauthorize them to charge my card, and say I'll send a check instead? And maybe they'll process my checks a month or two sooner than they intend to process my credit card payment?</p>
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<p>Or just relax about it and figure if they can't find their butt cheeks with both hands, then they'll just charge whenever they figure out what button to push. Of course they'll probably send me letters dated a month and a week ago so I can't figure out whether they just never got around to sending a letter than has long since been dealt with or if there is actually a new problem.</p>
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<p>Sorry for the long vent.</p>
 

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<p>I would report the credit card lost/stolen and get a new number.Let the medical biller know not to charge your credit card anymore,and that you will make monthly payments on the bill by check. I always prefered to get a bill each month,and then pay by check.</p>
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<p>It is a pain but I would not just let it go and hope they do it right.They mess up and it is your good name that goes to collections messing up your credit.</p>
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<p>I never authorize recurring payments.  When we had a hospital bill I was able to make payments online.  I'm guessing that's not an option for you.  If you don't like the idea of sending in a check every month then just go through the hassle of calling them every month and paying by credit card (then checking in three days to make sure the payment went through).  And, I'd also send a letter of complaint to the president of the hospital and copy your doctor on the letter (and, if you used insurance as well copy them on the letter, too).  Document every conversation you've had and spell it all out for them then ask for a response on how they plan to fix it (maybe ask how they plan to modernize with the rest of western civilization and get online bill pay, but, that's my snarky side). </p>
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<p>The squeaky wheel gets the grease and, yes, it is a huge pain sometimes to squeak and why should you have to squeak when you roll just fine but, ya know, sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. </p>
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<p>To save your emergency fund I'd let them carry the debt interest free until it's paid off even if it was a little extra hassle.</p>
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<p>Best wishes!</p>
 

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<p>I would send in a check every month.  I think it would satisfy your need to see an accurate balance in your check register and it would get the bill paid.  I would <strong>not</strong> pay this off early since there are no interest charges.</p>
 

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<p>I agree that if it's 0% interest, to not pay it off early.  I'd go with the advice above to pay by check.  That also gives you a paper trail in case anything happens with the account.  For things like this, I document the heck out of it.  They are already showing that they are not competent enough to keep accurate records.  That could come back to bite you in the butt (e.g. you pay off the account, but they still show a balance because of poor accounting).</p>
 
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