National Patient Account Services or NPAS is a third-party collection agency that specializes in collecting delinquent debts for healthcare providers. National Patient Account Services has received consumer complaints alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), including attempting to collect debts not owed and threatening to take actions that cannot legally be taken.If you have been contacted by NPAS, understand your rights before taking action.
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They’re legit. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), National Patient Account Services, Inc. was founded and incorporated in 1980. The BBB established its profile page in 2005. NPAS is listed as a collection agency; insurance company and insurance services office; workers’ compensation insurance provider; and payment processing, medical billing, and financial services provider. NPAS uses several alternate business names, including Columbia Collection Services, Columbia Patient Accounts, EMBS Medical Billing, and Parallon Business Performance Group. Buzzfile estimates NPAS’ annual revenue at $2.0 million and the size of its headquarters staff at 17 employees.
The National Patient Account Services website consists of only one page and identifies them as “a leading provider of patient collection services for the healthcare industry.” NPAS cites customer service as its top priority and is “committed to treating patients and guarantors with dignity, sensitivity, and respect.”
The National Patient Account Services website does not provide any detailed information about its business practices or client base. Site visitors “interested in making a payment online” are instructed to “refer to the payment website indicated on the letter they received.” All other questions are directed to their toll-free customer service phone number.
As of December 2017, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) has closed 87 complaints against National Patient Account Services in the preceding 3 years, with 17 complaints closed in the past 12 months.Most of the complaints allege problems with billing and collections; several complaints also allege problems with customer service. As of May 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has received 17 complaints referencing NPAS, all of them attributed to Columbia Collection Service. Justia lists at least 2 causes of civil litigation involving National Patient Account Services.
National Patient Account Services Inc Contact Information
National Patient Account Services, Inc.
2700 Blankenbaker Pkwy.
Louisville, KY 40299-2478
Telephone: (800) 223-9899
It is illegal for a debt collector to make empty threats to sue you or garnish your wages. It is also unlikely NPAS would sue you for a debt you may not owe or they cannot validate. However, debt collection agencies are known to have summoned debtors to court and garnish wages after a default judgement. Contacting an attorney BEFORE this could possibly happen would be a smart move. We’ve helped thousands of consumers fight back against unscrupulous debt collection harassers. Find out if we can help you too today!
Absolutely. Here are some Sample Cases against National Patient Account Services, Inc.
Complaints against National Patient Account Services commonly cite problems resulting from billing documentation errors and poor customer service. In August 2017, a complainant indicated she had undergone medical treatment the previous April. She had a high-deductible insurance policy, paid for many of the expenses out-of-pocket, and had her insurance cover the remainder. She indicated she had records of all the medical bills, and that all of them show that her bills were paid in full. Regardless, several months after treatment, the complainant received “letters from NPAS…demanding money allegedly because her insurance…failed to verify her.” The complainant indicated that she had “called each and every provider, none of whom had ever heard of National Patient Account Services. She then called her insurance company and asked them to verify her information with NPAS.” The insurance company complied, and the complainant “then called NPAS, who could not verify to the complainant what the bill was for or who submitted it, but did admit that her insurance had in fact verified her information with them.” The complainant “requested a paper copy of the bill to be sent to her from the provider. The paper bill she received came directly from National Patient Account Services… and asked that payment in a new, bigger …amount… totally unrelated to any of her actual charges… be sent to a post office box” in a city in which she had never received medical care. The complainant alleged further that she lives in and was treated in Texas, but the bill sent by National Patient Account Services had the name of a hospital with a post office box address from a medical facility to which she had never been admitted. Although “the name of the hospital was similar to the surgical facility that conducted her procedure…they are separate entities and bill separately.” To confirm this information, the complainant “called the hospital that was allegedly billing” her, but they indicated they had “never heard of her—likely because she was never there.”
The complainant summarized by stating that National Patient Account Services was “sending…letters asking that she verify her insurance, which was done, to process charges she never incurred from a hospital she had never been to, and as proof of their claim they have mailed her a bill that came from their offices so she can send… money to a post office box over a thousand miles away from any of the providers who actually took care of her” while she was being treated for cancer. The complainant accused NPAS of being “vultures and frauds,” and indicated that if she received “one more harassing letter, or a single phone call, she would contact a lawyer…to sue them…for FCRA and FDCPA violations.” She requested that her “name and personal information be removed from their data banks immediately and… that the transparent attempts to extort her… stop.”
In response, National Patient Account Services apologized “for any confusion or inconvenience” but indicated that, “unfortunately, they are unable to locate an account with the information provided.” NPAS requested that the complainant “please provide… additional identifying information for the…account… such as account numbers, the address statements are being sent to, and the facility name.”
The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) are enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The FDCPA regulates the behavior of collection agencies by prohibiting actions such as the use of abusive or threatening language; harassment; or the use of false or misleading information to collect a debt.
The FCRA regulates how collection agencies and creditors report delinquent debts to credit reporting agencies. Additional consumer protection laws include the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA). The complaint above illustrates how these laws can be extremely effective tools to hold accountable collection agencies who fail to adhere to their provisions.
These laws also provide individuals with a means to seek monetary damages in court. For example, the FDCPA allows consumers who have been violated to recover damages of up to $1,000, plus attorney fees and court costs.
Seek legal assistance to find the relief you may be entitled to if you are having difficulty resolving disputes with a debt collection agency.
Your debt harassment checklist:
- You are receiving multiple calls per week from third party collection agencies
- You are receiving early morning or late night calls from debt collectors
- You are recieving calls at work from a debt collection agency
- Debt collectors are calling your friends, neighbors, or coworkers
- Collectors are threatening you with violence, a lawsuit, or arrest
- A debt collector attempts to collect more than you owe
- You are being threatened with negative credit reporting
- A debt collector attempts to intimidate you
- Criminal accusations are being made towards you
- Use of obscene language during an attempt to collect
- Automated robocalls are being made to your phone in an attempt to collect
If you’ve been harassed by debt collectors and even one of these has happened to you, we can help. We will fight for your rights.
The Lemberg Law legal team is committed to holding debt collectors accountable, so complete our form for a FREE case evaluation, or call 844-685-9200.
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