Healthcare providers are allowed to sell your medical debt to collection agencies at any time. Once a collection agency has purchased your medical debt they are required to wait 180 days (6 months), before they can report it to the credit bureaus.
It is unlikely for unpaid medical debts to be sent to collections immediately. Healthcare providers tend to send bills to debt collectors once the bill has been outstanding for 60 -120 days.
Medical bills can still be sent to a debt collection agency, even If you are trying to pay your medical debt off. If you have made several late payments, or you are only making partial payments they may choose to report your debt to collections.
Collection agencies must wait 180 days (6 months) after acquiring your debt, before reporting the debt to your credit. This gives you time to pay the medical bills off.This affords you time to either pay off the debt, or make arrangements with the debt collectors to avoid the debts being reported and negatively impacting your credit report.
Medical debt is a desirable debt for collection agencies to acquire. The debt can be sent to collections once you have missed one 30 day payment cycle, however healthcare providers generally afford 60 - 120 days before sending debts to collections.
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