Saturday, March 28, 2015

Grant Mercantile Agency, a Better Business Bureau Center of Excellence

So now for a little more realness...

I've received an harassing letter, written in all caps, from the Grant Mercantile Agency of PO Box 1903, Oakhurst, California -- telephone number (559) 683-4651.  In the letter (from Desk 59) they assert I am indebted to a King-American Ambulance Company to the tune of $2523.60.

If the above didn't cause a spit take, let me explain:  I'm familiar with King-American, having seen their van-conversion, fly-by-night meat wagons trolling around downtown San Francisco, never with their emergency lights and sirens running.  I myself have never been in one, but had I, I assume my insurance would have covered the trip to whatever hospital they contract with (who that could be, I have no idea.)

As for Grant Mercantile Agency, I haven't checked to see if they are indeed a (ahem, cough, cough, nudge, nudge SUBTLE) legitimate collections agency.  I simply don't have time in the day.  Suffice it to say, if they're inclined to purchase debts from the likes of King-American, they're not likely to be in business for much longer (if in fact they haven't folded by the writing of this post.)  I assume they needed some proof from King-American that I in fact was serviced by those rent-to-own EMTs -- some proof that doesn't violate HIPAA statutes.  I'd hate to think they assumed this debt on a spoken assurance and an e-mail handshake.

Low-hanging fruit here, readers.  Anyone want to take this on?  It's probably as entertaining as it sounds...

UPDATE:  Apparently, Grant Mercantile has been strong-arming debtors since 1972, but I wonder if they've ever taken up a debt from a health care provider before -- particularly without proof that the health care provider (in this case, an ambulance company that goes who knows where) actually provided care to the debtor in question.  I'm going to e-mail them just to see what they say...  P.S.  I had no idea they actually had an A+ rating from the Inland Empire Better Business Bureau before I wrote the title -- color me psychic.