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Good morning. I certainly understand the situation and your concern. I am sorry to say but it is not true. They have no legal obligation to accept a $5 payment and they can demand half on the 28th and half on the 9th. They do not have to discount the bill or work with you. Now, you can respond to them and make a counter offer, to settle but if they do not want to accept this, then they can file suit for the bills and go after you and collect. I know it is not what you were hoping to hear but sending them $5 does not stop a lawsuit. Of course, you can try and it, as you have nothing to lose but do not be surprised if they do not cash it and accept it and proceed with the lawsuit.
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I just wanted to follow up and see if you had any other questions or needed me to clarify something. I am here to help, so please let me know. Thanks!