Tag Archives: Credit and Collection

INSURANCE MONEY WON’T PAY YOUR BILLS ANYMORE, DOC!

16 Jun

I was told today by a doctor that he refrains from pushing too hard to collect from a patient who owes him money, because of all the money he makes on the patient from insurance companies.  He is willing to write off patient balances, to keep making insurance money from the patient visits, and doesn’t want to offend the patient into leaving the practice by insisting he pay his bill.

This is the general attitude many doctors had 25-30 years ago.  It may have had some validity back them but times have changed!  Insurance money alone will not keep your doors open and your lights on any more doc.  You are putting your practice in jeopardy by not seeing what is happening around you!

High deductible health plans are the norm these days, and co-insurance is rising all the time.  Despite what the government tells us, there are more and more patients who do not have insurance, or have adequate insurance.  Self pay is now the highest payer in the medical world behind Medicare and Medicaid, and it is catching up fast.  According to recent statistics, patient balances now represent over 35% of a doctors income and soon, if major changes aren’t made, will be over 50%.

You can’t wish it away, or ignore it away.  You MUST find a way to motivate patients to pay you, and pay you faster than before.

Medicine, whether you like or not, or understand it or not, is a business.  You are trading a service for money, and the patient knows it.  They also know when you are leaving them alone about their bill so that you can continue to collect insurance money. Not only do they know, but guess who they tell?  EVERYBODY!!!  And guess what happens?  You get all the patients who don’t want to pay their bills.  Great!  Until, that is, until you watch your patient A/R go through the roof.  By the time you see this happen, you are already in trouble.

Don’t waste time.  There are automated tools to help your practice both maintain your good relationships with your patients, AND get them to pay you their portion of the bill sooner.  Call me today at 888-780-1333 and I will tell you about them.  Isn’t it worth 20-30 minutes of your time to keep the lights on in your practice over the long haul?

A Warning You Need to Read: Don’t Believe in Something For Nothing!

14 Jan

Many businesses have been told by their collection agency that they can provide free collections to them simply by adding the percentage fee onto the debtor’s balance as “the cost of collections”  In other words, promising prospective customers “something for nothing.”  With the high cost of collection agencies, this is a very tempting offer for a business who needs to collect their money and hesitates at paying an agency their typical 30-50% fee for collecting.

DON’T BELIEVE IT!!

First of all, the match doesn’t work anyway.  If the fee is 50% and the agency or the client adds the 50% back into the bill before it is collected, the client will only receive 50% of the new balance, which is not the full amount (only 75% of the original bill)

More importantly than that, the agency is tempting you to violate Federal Laws against usury.  The agency is setting themselves, AND POTENTIALLY YOU, up for a law suit and stiff fines and penalties.  Even if you put a statement to that effect into your financial policy, you may not charge these percentages to recoup your collection fees.

Please take a moment to read this article, copied from the ACA International (American Collector’s Association) website about a recent court case against such an unscrupulous agency.

Court Rules Against Collecting Percentage-Based Fees

Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that charging consumers a percentage
of their account balance as a collection fee is a violation of the FDCPA unless
the consumer explicitly agreed to pay a percentage-based fee.

In a Jan. 2, 2014, ruling, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals found that a collection
agency may not collect a fee based on a percentage of the account balance if the
original contract between the consumer and creditor did not specify the consumer
would be responsible for a percentage-based fee.

In the case, Bradley v. Franklin Collection Service Inc., the consumer plaintiff had
signed a patient agreement when receiving medical treatment that stated, “In the
event of nonpayment… I agree to pay all costs of collection, including a reasonable
attorney’s fee…” The creditor subsequently added a 33-1/3 percent fee (reflecting
the contractually agreed upon fee between the creditor and the collection agency)
before forwarding the account to the collection agency.

The court ruled that the plaintiff, “agreed to pay the actual costs of collection; his
contractual agreement with [creditor] did not require him to pay a collection agency’s
percentage-based fee where that fee did not correlate to the costs of collection.”
The court found that the percentage-based fee, assessed before the collection
agency’s attempt to collect, was not related to the agency’s actual cost of collection,
thus breaching the agreement between the consumer and the creditor. Therefore,
the court held that the collection agency violated the FDCPA by collecting the 33-1/3
percent fee when the consumer only agreed to pay the actual costs of collection.

© 2014 ACA International

In other cases, medical practices, along with the agency, were charged under racketeering laws for the very same offense.  The fines and penalties that they were required to pay were astronomical.

Please, let me show you a way to avoid the percentages charged by these collection agencies, without running afoul of the law, and while collecting more money than they do in the process.

Respond to me through the form below and I will rush you the information on how to avoid these kinds of unscrupulous methods and still collect more of your hard earned money.

The Importance of Cash Flow

5 Sep

Importance-of-Cash-Flow1

 

Cash flow is the life blood of businesses and there are many businesses and practices that have cash flow problems.  Since 1970 Transworld Systems has been working with small and medium sized businesses and practices to improve their accounts receivable and increase their cash flow!

Transworld Systems can improve your accounts receivable and increase cash flow with Accelerator by recovering your money faster!  Contact me  today to learn more about how we can help you!

Effective Cost Management for Your Medical Practice | Physicians Practice

6 Jun

Here is a good article that I read regarding cost management.  One of the most critical cost management strategies not contained in the article is to control the expense of following up slow-pay insurance claims and patient balances.

Patient responsibility is growing, due to the economy and High Deductible Health Plans.  Follow-up is both costly and challenging for a practice that is trying to keep its labor and overhead costs down, while staring down a growing A/R aging report.

I can show you tools to help you control, and even decrease, your cost of following up insurance and patient balances, while increasing your revenue and profitability.

It only takes an investment of 22 minutes in a free personalized A/R strategy meeting via phone to determine just how much these tools can increase cash flow, reduce costs, and increase revenue to your practice.  If so, you can see results almost immediately.  Isn’t it worth the investment of 22 minutes to find out?

Effective Cost Management for Your Medical Practice | Physicians Practice.

To schedule your free, no-obligations, personalized A/R strategy meeting with me via telephone, respond to me via the form below.

Dispelling Collection Myths

25 May

myths-twsystems

 

 

ACA (American Collectors Association) International seeks to dispel commonly held myths about the credit and collections industry. Today more than 30 million consumers have delinquent or defaulted accounts under collection, averaging $1,400 each.

“Repayment of consumer debt is the lifeblood of America’s credit-based system and vitally important to the national and state economies,” ACA International Chief Executive Officer Pat Morris said. “It helps ensure that affordable credit is available, goods and services remain affordable, sustains jobs and supports keeping taxes low.”

As an industry, third-party debt collectors help employ more than 300,000 people, pay nearly $2 billion in federal, state and local taxes, donate $85 million and volunteer 650,000 hours to charitable organizations in local communities. “Whether a small town hospital, business or a city struggling to recover taxpayer owed dollars, organizations large and small rely on the recovery of rightfully owed consumer debt,” Morris said.

Myth 1: Avoiding a Debt Collector Makes the Debt Go Away. Consumers who ask debt collectors to stop contact or choose not to respond to calls or letters often mistakenly believe it means their debt has been eliminated. Avoiding contact will not erase a debt. Instead, consumers should communicate with collectors to discuss the account, verify its accuracy and work on a plan for resolution. If consumers don’t owe the debt, communicating with collectors can help put a stop to calls or letters.

Myth 2: Consumers Don’t Have Rights in the Recovery of Past Due Accounts. The collection of consumer debt is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the United States. Consumers have important rights under a number of federal and state laws. For more information about what to do if contacted by a debt collector please visit www.askdoctordebt.org.

Myth 3: All Debt Collectors are Bad. Just as “all consumers” aren’t the same, neither are all debt collectors. Most are committed to professionalism, training and customer service. When it comes to the “bad guys,” we want to put them out of business just as consumers do. ACA International and its members continue to work with state and federal policymakers, regulators, courts and attorneys general to comply with the law and hold accountable those who do not.

Myth 4: It is Boom Time for Debt Collectors. It’s no secret that consumers have struggled financially in the current economy. Despite an increase in defaults and delinquency, the inability of consumers to repay rightfully owed debts trickles down to those charged with their recovery.

© 2012 ACA International. All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with the express written permission of ACA International

Did You Open Your Business To Specialize in Collections?

8 May

graphmoney-Jan11-small

 

 

Entrepreneurs, specialists and CEO’s who operate companies did not open their respective businesses to collect on past due accounts. Each started their business to provide a good or service to fill a need. Often, there is not sufficient time, resources or understanding of the best way to collect on past due payments. Many wonder:

  • How soon after the first invoice do you send the next?
  • When do you call?
  • What do you say?
  • How do you protect the relationship you worked so hard to build?
  • Are there laws regarding collections?

As a result of unanswered questions, lack of processes and time, many debts go unpaid and ultimately factor into business failure. Company owners can lose traction while trying to split time between managing a shortfall of cash flow and collecting on past due payments while also attempting to concentrate on operating and growing their business. This is when companies should rely on the experts at collection agencies to recover delinquent accounts.

A company who must send their clients to collections no more wants to do so than the client wants their account sent. Unfortunately this step is sometimes necessary. When a business or company provides credit for goods or services they expect to, and should, receive payment. Multiply the effect of bad debts, late payments, slow paying and non paying client across thousands of businesses across the country and it is easy to see the negative impact this could have on the total economy.

A debt collection agency can assist in recovering debts and improving account receivables so business owners and operators can focus their energy and time on growing and running the business. Collection agencies possess the systems, resources and trained personal to improve cash flow. A good agency will have researched and studied consumer behavior and know the proper steps to take when dealing with the different types of debtors many companies and business encounter today.

When selecting a collection agency, make sure they are compliant with the varied and ever changing state and federal regulations that govern this highly-regulated industry. The wrong choice in a collection agency could result in large fines as a result of negligent actions with regard to state and federal regulations.

For more help in selecting the proper agency for you business, medical or dental practice, contact me.  I’m happy to help.

 

%d bloggers like this: