My question involves collection proceedings in the State of: California
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In February 2007 I spent a few days in a hospital after being put on an involuntary hold following a suicide attempt. The next few months I received various bills and assumed everything I didn't get billed for had been covered by my insurance. About a year later I received a bill in the mail from them with a balance of $7000 indicating no coverage by my insurance provider. I confirmed with my insurance provider that I did indeed have coverage for that period and told the hospital to refile the claim. I go back and forth between hospital and insurance to coordinate the claim, and then assume everything is taken care of when I don't hear anything back. Sometime in 2010 I get another bill for $7000. This time I go through the same thing but file a claim myself with insurance. Don't hear anything so I assume it got taken care of. Now a few months ago (April 2012) I get another call about a $7000 past due balance. They indicate all claims have been denied. Insurance tells me the first claim was denied because the hospital didn't 'authorize' their own services, while subsequent claims were denied for being duplicate claims of the first. They tell me I need to file an appeal for the original denial back in 2007. Just checked back with them and they denied the appeal because the claim was so long ago. I am going to do one last appeal to see if I can get insurance to pay but I have a feeling they will deny that too.
tldr: Hospital messed up filing an insurance claim in February 2007. I didn't find out there was a problem until over a year later and tried to work with them. Didn't hear anything so assumed it was fixed. Now its been 5 years and they sent me a $7000 bill but its too late to do anything about the insurance (I'm not even covered by the same provider anymore). I'm tired of dealing with them and insurance trying to fix a mistake the hospital made 5+ years ago. They contact me on a semi-annual basis about paying this.
My question is: Would anything happened now if I just walk away from this and ignore it if it comes up again? I honestly don't care if it shows up on my credit because I have perfect credit otherwise, but I would like to know if they can do anything else?