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Collections Law/EX-Wife Failed to pay now collection coming after me


Years ago my 17yr 11mo. old son was injured in a severe accident in OR.  We now live in WA. The ex-wife filled out all of the medical intake forms and had all of the bills sent to her apartment.  Four years later a collection agency is contacting me for the deductible amount and adding on their fees and interest.  I do not disagree he is my son and I owe the original amount.  There was a verbal agreement that the ex-wife would pay all medical out of pocket expenses (OOP) for our son who lived with her, and I would pay (OOP) for our two other children who lived with me.  In addition, per our divorcee decree she was required to either have insurance covering all of the children or pay a proportionate share.  I digress as she did neither.

Since I was never notified of the outstanding bill how do I fight back with the appropriate law to pay the bill and make sure it does not show up on my credit report as negative?   Or do I contact the hospital directly and pay the balance plus reasonable interest in full and require appropriate documentation that the bill will be removed from collections?

You can try to send a copy of you divorce papers to the provider and see if they will remove your name.  However, they will probably tell you that the divorce is between you and your ex and it does not concern them.  Your best bet is to pay the bill with the understanding that you name be removed from the credit bureaus.  Be sure that you get this agreement in WRITING before you pay it. Explaine that you just got involved with this and that the right thing to do would to be to go along with this request.  Just a word of encouragement, most cases like this were closed and all parties walked away happy because the offer to clear the account was made in good faith and in a calm and reasonable manner.  I wish you the best with this situation and if you need further information please let me know.

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Ray A Miller


I am qualified to answer questions on the following subjects: FDCPA, FCRA and HIPAA as well as medical collections, general collections and collection agency related issues. I trained these subjects at a nationwide collection agency and customer service call center and audited around 150 representatives for compliance to the laws. I have been in the Collections Industry for over 30 years. I feel that everyone deserves to be treated fairly and with compassion and that is the way I trained collectors. Even though I worked for a Collection Agency, I get great satisfaction in helping those who have been mistreated or in need of help with these confusing issues.


I was the Compliance Administrator with a nationwide collection agency and customer service call center-I have trained hundreds of collectors on the above referenced topics. I have been in the medical collections industry for over twenty years and research these topics on a daily basis.

ACA International

Some college ACA Certified Collection Specialist

Past/Present Clients
I am retired due to medical conditions and spend a good deal of time keeping current on collection issues.

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