Having an outstanding debt go into collections can be stressful. If Progressive Insurance has forwarded your account balance to Receivable Management Services (RMS), you likely have questions about what it means and how to resolve it. This guide will provide an overview of Progressive Insurance, RMS, and tips for addressing collections to help get your finances back on track.
About Progressive Insurance
Progressive is one of the largest auto insurance providers in the United States. Founded in 1937, the company is known for offering innovative insurance products and allowing customers to compare policy prices online.
Progressive offers the following types of insurance:
- Auto insurance
- Motorcycle insurance
- Boat insurance
- RV insurance
- Commercial auto insurance
- Homeowners insurance
- Renters insurance
- Condo insurance
- Life insurance
While Progressive offers competitive rates and policies, disputes can arise over premiums, denied claims, or cancelled policies. Like most companies, Progressive will send overdue account balances to collections agencies like RMS to recover the debt.
What is Receivable Management Services (RMS)?
Receivable Management Services LLC (RMS) is a debt collection agency located in Timonium, MD. The company works to recover delinquent debts on behalf of creditors in industries like insurance, banking, utilities, telecom, and healthcare.
RMS uses phone calls, letters, and online messages in its collection efforts. The company may contact the original debtor or other authorized persons to try arranging repayment plans.
If you receive a call or letter from RMS claiming you owe a debt to Progressive Insurance, it means Progressive forwarded your account to RMS after you failed to resolve the balance directly. The next sections provide tips for addressing the debt.
Do Not Ignore the Debt
When you receive notice from RMS that you have an outstanding collections balance owed to Progressive Insurance, it is important not to ignore it. The debt will not go away on its own. RMS will persist in contacting you to recover the money through phone calls or letters.
Ignoring the debt can allow additional collection fees to accrue, result in a lawsuit, or cause the account to remain on your credit longer.
Review Your Progressive Account History
Before paying anything to RMS or agreeing to a payment plan, review your account history with Progressive first. Log into your Progressive online account or call customer service at 1-800-PROGRESSIVE.
Verify that the amount RMS claims you owe is accurate. Review your past premium invoices, claims information, canceled checks, and policy correspondence to confirm the debt is valid.
Document any discrepancies you find and contact both Progressive and RMS to dispute inaccurate information. Do not pay anything until the amount owed is validated.
Negotiate With RMS
Once you have confirmed the Progressive debt amount is correct, you can begin negotiating payment options with RMS.
Some tips when negotiating include:
Ask for removal in exchange for payment – Request that RMS delete the collections record from your credit reports upon full payment. Get any agreed to arrangements in writing. Debt under $600 that is paid prior to reporting can be removed.
See if Progressive will recall the debt – You may be able to pay Progressive directly and have them recall the account from RMS to avoid the collection item.
Negotiate a settlement – Offer to pay a lump sum that is less than the full balance owed in exchange for RMS considering the debt settled. Settlements may be 40-60% of the original amount.
Set up a payment plan – If you cannot pay in full, RMS may agree to a monthly payment plan with 0% interest so you can resolve the debt over time.
Dispute any errors – Formally dispute inaccurate information RMS may be reporting to the credit bureaus and request removal.
Document any agreements with RMS in writing before providing payment.
Consequences of Unresolved Collections
If you are unable to reach an agreement with RMS to address the debt, here are some potential consequences of leaving a collections balance unresolved:
Damage to your credit scores – Unpaid collections can lower your credit scores by up to 100 points or more.
Reported to credit bureaus – The collection will appear on your Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion credit reports for 7 years from the original delinquency date.
Increased collection efforts – RMS may escalate collection attempts through letters, calls, creditor lawsuits, or wage garnishment if permitted by your state laws.
Higher insurance costs – Having a sent to collections debt with an insurer like Progressive can result in much higher auto insurance premiums.
Unable to open new Progressive policies – Progressive may refuse to sell you new policies until the past due balance is paid.
Tips to Prevent Collections With Progressive
Nobody wants to deal with the stress and credit damage caused by having an account sent to collections. Here are some tips to avoid having Progressive send your policy balance to RMS:
Pay premiums on time – Set up auto-pay through your Progressive account to avoid lapses in payment that could lead to policy cancellation and collections.
Review billing errors promptly – If you notice any discrepancies on your Progressive invoice, contact them right away to dispute before non-payment occurs.
Maintain an emergency fund – Have some savings set aside to pay an unexpected premium increase or deductible amount that you otherwise could not afford.
Communicate financial hardship – If you lose your job or have a major medical issue, call Progressive early to discuss alternative payment arrangements.
Cancel policy you cannot afford – If the premiums become unaffordable, cancel the policy and switch insurers so you don’t incur debt. Pay any past due amounts owed first.
Following these prevention tips can help you maintain good financial standing with Progressive and avoid having your account sent to RMS or other collection agencies.
Having Progressive Insurance forward your policy account to Receivable Management Services for collections can negatively impact your finances and credit standing. Take steps to validate the debt amount, negotiate payment terms, and resolve the balance as soon as possible. Avoid further financial stress by paying Progressive bills on time or cancelling policies you cannot afford. With a proactive approach, you can settle your collections debt and keep your accounts in good standing going forward.
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