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Medical Bills: The #1 Cause of Bankruptcy

According to a recent MNBC news article, medical bills are the main reason people file bankruptcy. Some estimates believe that 60% of bankruptcies are directly related to medical bills. In fact, over one million people will file bankruptcy this year alone. The cost of medical treatment continues to grow at a rapid pace, and medical bills are more frequently cited as the reason for filing bankruptcy than credit card debt or mortgages.

Families are unable to keep up with the costs of medical treatment. Many families have even decided to drop health insurance and their expensive premiums. They simply cannot afford to have medical insurance and continue to pay their other bills. However, without medical insurance, getting sick or injured could result in a huge financial strain and possibly bankruptcy. For example, if someone without any health insurance required emergency surgery, they could end up owing the hospital hundreds of thousands of dollars.

While having health insurance can help with the cost of medical treatment, even families with health insurance struggle to pay their medical bills. The website NerdWallet.com estimates that nearly 10 million people with medical insurance will accumulate medical debt that they cannot pay in 2013. Health insurance provides a safety net for expensive medical bills, but families can still end up with large, burdensome medical bills.

Some people even resort to skipping appointments with their doctor and refusing necessary medications to reduce the amount of money spent on medical costs. Over 25 million Americans will not take medicine that has been prescribed to them properly in an attempt to save money. This includes skipping doses, taking smaller doses, and delaying a medication refill. Of course, not taking medication as prescribed and missing necessary medical appointments is very dangerous and could result in even more medical bills including trips to the emergency room or hospital.

While the idea of having a large amount of medical bills can be scary, filing for bankruptcy can greatly reduce the strain caused by medical bills. Filing for bankruptcy will allow someone with medical debt to focus on more important areas of their finances, such as paying their mortgage or car payment. By filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, someone can completely eliminate their medical bills (as well as some other debts). By filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, someone can repay their medical bills over predetermined time period. If you or someone you know suffers from large medical debt, bankruptcy might be a good option for them.

Morgan & Morgan, an experienced law firm in Athens, Georgia, has more than 30 years experience helping people with medical related debt. We offer a free initial consultation with an experienced attorney, NOT a paralegal or assistant, to fully evaluate the client’s options. Call 1-800-924-7438 or (706)548-7070 today for free initial consultation.

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