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Loren, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 34442
Experience:  30 years experience representing clients.
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I have a question regarding a fee attached to my medical

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I have a question regarding a fee attached to my medical bill that has gone to collections. I am in New York, is it legal for a debt collector to charge a fee on top of a medical bill?
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: No
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No

I am Loren, a licensed attorney for over 30 yrs. Thank you for your patience as I review the question. I will post my response shortly.

The debt collector may not charge any more than you agreed to pay. So, if you signed a fee agreement or other contract with the original creditor providing for interest, collection fees, or other additional charges, then it is legal. Otherwise, it is not and you should report the collection agent to the state attorney general's office.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Does the fee amount (or percentage) need to be expressly stated in the agreement? Although I did sign something that said there would be a fee if the account goes to collections, it does not state what that fee is, and the amount the collector came up with seems rather arbitrary, and he agreed to cut it in half if I pay by Friday, so I am not sure its based on anything real.

Thank you for following up.

It can just be stated that the costs of collection will be added. It does not need to state a particular rate.

I am sorry. I wish I could tell you otherwise, but it is somewhat arbitrary if the agreement just states the costs of collection to be added.

Loren and 2 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
No, no, that's fine, I appreciate the feedback, now I can pay with a clear conscience that I didn't just pay blindly without looking into it. And I will be more mindful of agreements in the future. Thank you.

Thank you for using JA. Best of luck to you.