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Dear Consumer Ed: A medical provider recently sent me a statement for $14,850.00, with charges dating from four to six years ago. The provider never submitted the bills to my insurance company as it had done in the past. The charges are far outside my insurance company’s contracted time (60 days) for consideration. Now the medical provider is threatening to send my account to a collection agency. Am I legally required to pay the full amount of these medical costs under these circumstances?
Dear Consumer Ed: I put down money on a leased vehicle. The bank did not approve the loan request, so I had to return the vehicle to the dealership. But the dealer is refusing to return my money. Can they do that?
Dear Consumer Ed: Can an apartment complex force tenants to pay for “valet” trash pickup in front of their apartment door versus letting us just take care of it and throw it away in the dumpster for free?
Dear Consumer Ed: How much of a surcharge are merchants allowed to charge you for paying with a credit card?
Dear Consumer Ed: I brought a chainsaw to a store for service. When I went back to pick it up, the store told me it had been lost or stolen. The owner offered to give me another used saw or a discount on a new saw. I am concerned that if I get another used saw, it may not be in the same condition as mine. I think the owner owes me my saw or a new one. What is the owner legally obligated to do?
Dear Consumer Ed: I had a bill that went into collections. Now that I’ve paid it in full, will this continue to negatively affect my credit?
Dear Consumer Ed: If I ask questions about an old debt that might have expired, will that make it active again? I’m not sure what the original debt was for before it was sold to a debt collector, and I need to find out the date the debt was incurred.
Dear Consumer Ed: Since my original apartment lease expired, I am on a month-to-month lease. Can my landlord increase the rent by $150/month with only eight days’ notice?
Dear Consumer Ed: Once your car is repossessed, how much time are you given to pay the overdue amount before your vehicle is sold? Also, how long does a repo company have to wait before getting rid of any belongings you left in the vehicle?
Dear Consumer Ed: I have an old student loan debt that I defaulted on in 2004. It is still on my credit report. I thought the statute of limitation on debt was six years. Don’t they have to remove this from my credit report by law? Also, is a collection agency still allowed to garnish my wages for this?