Should a debt collector be calling me for upaid bill of deceased mother?

by Kim
(Massachusetts)

Hi

I had talked to the hospital when I received the original bill of my deceased mother and told them that due to my own financial problems I could not pay for my mothers bill. The woman I talked to said it would be put down as a bad debt. I did not sign any papers when my mother was admitted to the hospital since she did it herself. I didn't hear anything more about it for a couple of months.

Now I am receiving automated calls from a debt collector concerning this debt. They call when I'm not available so I can't stop the message when it says if your not so and so or responsible party to stop the message.

I had sent in a death certificate and letter to this collection agency stating that there was no estate to pay for this bill and not to contact me. I'm on medicaid myself now due to unemployment and I'm struggling to pay my own bills.

Is there anything I can do to stop the harassment? These people don't seem to understand that there is no estate to pay them.

Thanks for any help
Kim


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Dec 07, 2010
Stopping Collection Calls After Mother's Debt
by: Gerri

Kim,

We are very sorry to hear of our loss and also very sorry to hear this collection agency continues to harass you for her debt.

You've done what we would recommend: you've sent them a letter and the death certificate asking them to leave you alone. Since they have failed to do so, they may be breaking the law.

We recommend you now talk with a consumer law attorney. Find out how to get FREE or low cost legal advice about debt collection from a consumer law attorney here. If the collection agency's actions have been illegal, they can be required to pay the attorney's fees. That means there are attorneys who may be willing to help and charge you no fees upfront. (They only get paid if you win or settle in your favor.)

If you decide for some reason not to go that route, at least file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC.gov) and your state attorney general's office. While they don't get involved in individual disputes, they may take action against a firm if there is pattern of abuse.

Do let us know how this turns out.

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