Getting medical care for an emergency or a chronic medical condition shouldn’t mean that you have to face bankruptcy; however, this is the reality for many people because they aren’t able to keep up with the payments of the care. Unfortunately, medical care in the United States is expensive. Even some people who have excellent insurance find that the co-pays, deductibles and other expenses are more than they can handle.
You might need to turn to bankruptcy to get control of your financial situation. One thing you need to know is that you can’t pick and choose what debts you will include. All of your debts must go into the bankruptcy, which means that you have to give up your credit cards. You also won’t be able to open any new lines of credit.
There isn’t any formal bankruptcy that is deemed medical bankruptcy. Instead, you have to figure out which basic bankruptcy you need to file. There are two primary options for consumers – Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. There are stark differences in these, so find out which one you qualify for and what it means for you.
Another consideration is that you might have to change doctors. Some doctors will continue to see patients who file bankruptcy, but others aren’t willing to see people if they have to write off their debts. You might be able to keep your doctor if you are filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy since you will have to repay a portion of the debts. But, it is always a good idea to contact the doctor ahead of time to find out if you can continue with the practice.
Ultimately, you have to do what’s best for you. If you need to file bankruptcy due to medical bills, be sure you understand how the filing will impact you and what responsibilities you will have during the process.