What to do if my husband’s ex-wife has been taking my stepson to physical therapybut has not paid any of the medical bills even though she is supposed to be responsible?

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What to do if my husband’s ex-wife has been taking my stepson to physical therapybut has not paid any of the medical bills even though she is supposed to be responsible?

The medical facility is now sending the bills to us stating that since my husband is also the patient’s father that makes him legally responsible for the bills as well. Also, since I’m married to the patient’s father that it makes me responsible too. Are they within their legal rights to send us the bills because the mother refuses to pay? They have also threatened us with collections. We live in a community property state.

Asked on February 29, 2012 under Family Law, Washington

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Absolutely not. The individual who sent you those collection letters and bills is sorely mistaken in contract law. You were not privy to the arrangement and neither was your husband. Further, neither you nor your husband consented to the treatment so you need to do the following. You need to contact the company in writing and indicate that a) neither of you consented to treatment and b) that neither of you were privy to the contract nor signatories to the contract nor third party beneficiaries and that c) their collection practices are against the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and you will report them if they continue to conduct such illegal activity. Then, report them anyway.


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