The health care system in the United States is known for being complicated and expensive. This is especially true if you suffer a severe injury or hospitalization and medical bills begin to quickly pile up. If you do not have adequate health insurance or any insurance at all, these expensive bills can quickly turn into overwhelming debt.
Medical debt is a common problem that thousands upon thousands of Americans are dealing with every day. Although you may feel helpless in the face of extensive medical debt, you do have options, and there are solutions.
When repayment is an option for medical debt
When your medical bills begin to mount and you realize you will be unable to fully pay them off, you should take a moment to assess the situation. Many people facing overwhelming debt tend to go into denial and avoid the problem, which only makes it worse.
Instead, you should calculate what you owe and honestly evaluate whether you may be able to pay off even a portion of the debt based on your current income and employment situation. Medical creditors may work with you to establish a payment plan. It is worth exploring whether this may be an option in your case.
When you need to discharge your medical debt
Repayment is simply not an option for everyone. Oftentimes, the very injury or illness that put you in the hospital in the first place is also the cause of lost wages or no longer being able to work, compounding an already stressful problem. If your case requires a fresh financial start, you may be able to discharge your medical debt by filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Every bankruptcy case is different, and your particular medical debt will need examination by an experienced bankruptcy attorney who can determine how to maximize the amount of medical debt you can discharge. A bankruptcy filing may be able to provide you with the appropriate relief from your financial burdens so you can begin to rebuild your finances and your life.