Assistance needed before small claims court date

I have a dental bill that I was unable to pay. They quickly turned it over to a collection agency. This agency kept calling me a work even though I told them personal phone calls were not allowed and I could get in trouble for them.

Then they served me with court documents, by leaving them with a teenage member of my staff to give to me when I arrived for my shift. What I want to know is can I write the collection agency a letter offering a payment, and then a payment plan to avoid going to court? I am in California and am not sure of the rules on any of this. Also the original bill was $855, and the collection agency says with their fees it is now $2435. Can they do this?

Six months without using our credit cards, that is. We have been able to live on our means without using a credit card just to get us through the month. It’s still a long road ahead of us, but this is good for us.