Collections Law/Legitimate collection or not?
We had a pipe burst last winter. Because the company provided by the insurance company was too busy at that time, the insurance company told us that we could find one company if they can come ASAP. So we found one. We signed a contract with them.
A month after they received a check from the insurance company, they sent us a statement saying that the insurance did not pay them and we are responsible for the difference. After some communication with the insurance company, we knew that the underwriter was getting one story from their IA and one from the mitigation company on the amount of equipment. Unfortunately the mitigation company camera card broke so they have no pictures to prove their side. Then they revised the estimate and sent a new claims amount, which was paid by the insurance.
Now they are threatening us that they may send this to debt collection or small claims because we signed the contract to pay the amount not paid by the insurance company.
Do you think a debt collection company would accept this case? Apparently the revised statement was agreed with the insurance and should be considered as the final bill. But now, they are using the initial estimate as final bill and charge us for the difference between the 2 estimates.
A collection agency will "accept" virtually any case if they (the collection agency) thinks they can collect. More importantly, can they get a judgment if they bring a lawsuit, whether it be small claims or otherwise? Under these circumstances, probably not. It sounds like there was an agreement to settle this matter with the insurance company and they are stuck with their deal. If they do sue you, you have a good defense and could probably get the case dismissed. Insofar as bringing a collection action, that may already have happened.
The best advice I can give is that if they did initiate collection action or if they bring a lawsuit against you, or if they affect your credit, call me at the number listed below. I will not charge you just to talk on the phone. In the meantime, however, it is their move to decide what they are going to do, or not do.
Jack Hall J.D.