If you're getting calls from CF Medical Billing LLC, you're probably wondering why and how to get them to stop. You might also find a collections account negatively impacting your credit score from CF Medical Billing.
These things can be especially troubling if you don't believe you owe any debt and there's been a mistake. You can take steps to dispute debts, and you have federal protections as a consumer as well.
CF Medical is a collections company. They operate as a third-party collector, so other original creditors will hire them to collect on their behalf.
If you're getting calls from CF Medical, it's because they believe you owe a debt on a past-due, delinquent account.
CF Medical isn't a scam—they are a legitimate debt collector, but that doesn't mean that the account they're calling you about is actually something you owe. You need to verify your debt before doing anything else.
Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, both federal laws, you have the right to transparency.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act is focused primarily on how your financial information is reported and maintained for accuracy, fairness, and privacy. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a law that gives consumers rights as far as how a debt collector can contact them.
CF Medical collects for healthcare providers and companies. Healthcare and medical debt is handled a little differently in the U.S. than other consumer debt types.
It takes longer for medical bills to affect your credit. They only start to be reported to credit bureaus when they're turned over to a collections company like CF Medical. Since July 1, 2022, medical providers have to wait a year before they can report unpaid medical debt to credit bureaus.
Also, in July 2022, credit bureaus started taking paid medical debts off credit reports.
While there is more leeway, once a collections agency has the debt, they can report it to credit bureaus, which can mean your credit score will likely be affected. Having a medical bill go to collections can result in significant credit score damage.
Any collections account, whether related to medical debt or not, can take seven years to come off your credit report, although the effects on your credit report go down over time.
As with most debt collection agencies, there are a lot of complaints from consumers about CF Medical. Many of these involve consumers not feeling like the company followed the Fair Credit Reporting Act in various ways. For example, according to consumer reviews, many people don't feel they received validation of their debt or information on how to dispute it.
If you legitimately owe a debt that CF Medical is trying to collect, you can work with them to negotiate a payment plan or settlement. There's no guarantee they'll be willing to work with you, but many debt collectors will. Before you agree to anything, you should contact an FCRA attorney. They can review your case and work on your behalf to make sure there's legal compliance and that the outcome is the best possible given your situation.
When trying to find a solution with CF Medical, you're protected from harassment and other forms of contact. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prevents debt collectors from threatening or intimidating you. The FDCPA also says that debt collectors have to stop contacting you if you request that in writing, and they have to be transparent and not deceptive.
If you owe the debt and you've validated it with CF Medical, it will probably be on your credit report for seven years.
However, an all-too-common situation is that you don't owe the debt. In this situation, the steps you take are going to be different.
You’ll need to dispute it if you realize there's an error in some or all of the information. Medical billing is especially prone to errors because it involves insurance. Again, consulting with an FCRA attorney first can avoid the risk of the situation becoming worse.
Errors can occur because names get mixed up during billing, or people with similar social security numbers could have mixed billing information or credit files.
The original medical biller may have reported wrong information to CF Medical, or CF Medical could have incorrectly reported information to one or more credit bureaus.
Under the FCRA and the FDCPA, CF Medical must legally investigate your dispute within 30 days (sometimes, they have 45 days). Then, once they've finished the investigation, the company has to report what they found.
At that point, if there is an error, the wrong information should be removed from your credit report so that you're no longer getting calls about it and it's not affecting your score negatively. Depending on the situation, some or all of the incorrect information can be deleted.
While there are steps debt collectors are supposed to follow according to the law, this isn't always what happens. Consumers feel frustrated and stuck trying to get a response or get negative information off their credit reports if they’re trying to manage it all on their own.
The calls are stressful when you’re continuing to deal with CF Medical. Plus, if they’ve reported to one or more of the credit bureaus, you might not be able to get new credit or financial accounts. You might be prevented from buying or even renting a home, and if you’re looking for a new job, a low credit score can, in some cases, affect this as well.
An FCRA consumer protection attorney can help.
Fair Credit is a team of experienced FCRA attorneys, and we can help you as you navigate dealing with CF Medical. Contact us today for a free review of your case.