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Thread: Financial Hardship write off

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Richmond VA

    Question Financial Hardship write off

    AAPC: Back to School
    Medicare patient calls and has a balance; they state I can't pay the bill because I live on a fixed income.

    Do I ask for a hardship letter?
    Do I ask for taxes as proof of financial hardship?

    What is the protocol for this matter?

    Any information out there I can get??
    Ivonne Atanacio CPC, CPC- I, CBCS

  2. #2


    Have you tried asking them to make payments? If they say they cant afford to make payments I would ask them to send a letter stating that due to their limited income they are unable to afford to pay the bill.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Richmond VA


    Yes,, Patient stated they can not make payments, but is it required for the provider records to have them send taxes and harship letter?
    Ivonne Atanacio CPC, CPC- I, CBCS

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    North Carolina


    I would create an office policy for which is viewed as a reasonable collections effort. Follow this policy for each patient alike...

    Where a physician/supplier makes a reasonable collection effort for the payment of coinsurance/deductibles, failure to collect payment is not considered a reduction in the physician’s/supplier’s charge. To be considered a reasonable collection effort, the effort to collect Medicare coinsurance/deductible amounts must be similar to the effort made to collect comparable amounts from non-Medicare patients. It must also involve the issuance of a bill to the beneficiary or to the party responsible for the patient’s personal financial obligations. In addition, it may include other actions, such as subsequent billings, collection letters and telephone calls or personal contacts which constitute a genuine, rather than token, collection effort.




    A hardship form is certainly a step in the right direction.
    Last edited by RebeccaWoodward*; 11-01-2011 at 10:40 AM.

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