The battle raging in Idaho between Frank VanderSloot, a billionaire, and a pair of lawyers who own a collection agency, is intensifying, as VanderSloot also begins a lobbying campaign to enact new laws related to the collection of medical debts.
Before getting into the new developments, here is the backstory: VanderSloot is the CEO of a wellness company. Some of his employees were being sued by a collection agency for unpaid medical debts. VanderSloot objected to what he labeled “aggressive” collection efforts by the agency, and has pledged $1 million to help individuals in Idaho defend themselves against collection lawsuits, especially those filed by the agency in question.
After calling VanderSloot’s efforts “laughable,” the collection agency noted that it has won judgments in every suit in which VanderSloot’s money has been used to help defend those being sued. Now, the two sides are warring in the media about how effective VanderSloot’s efforts have been.
VanderSloot claims that new deals have been negotiated in 31 of the 82 post-judgment cases that his defense team has been involved in, and that they are going to court in the other 51 cases. A spokesman representing the collection agency said no post-judgment settlements have been re-negotiated.
At the same time, VanderSloot pitched half of the Idaho legislature yesterday on a bill that would require individuals receive more information about their outstanding debts before they are sent to a collection agency.
Under the proposed legislation, healthcare providers would be required to send out bills detailing the services rendered to individuals within 30 days of the services being provided. As well, the facility would have to send a consolidated notice to those individuals within 30 days after the first bill is sent that contains the contact information for anyone who is billing those individuals.