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How can you reduce overwhelming medical debt?

Medical debt is often unexpected and can total into the thousands, tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars. Even those who have insurance may have co-pays, deductibles and expenses that come out of their pockets and threaten their financial stability.

As someone who is dealing with medical debt, it is important that you know that there are several ways to reduce or eliminate these debts. Some include:

  • Negotiating with the doctor, clinic or hospital directly
  • Setting up payment plans
  • Bankruptcy

Each of these is a possible solution to the debts that you may feel are overwhelming and taking over your life.

1. Negotiating

Negotiating with your provider is a good first step. Check the bill and look up the same medical treatment at other locations. You may find that you've been charged more than at other hospitals, for example, and ask that your provider matches the lower charges there.

Sometimes, offering a settlement is better than any other kind of negotiation. For example, if your surgery comes in at $1,500 but you can afford to pay $1,200 now, you may want to ask if they'd be willing to take less if you can pay in full.

3. Set up a payment plan

A good payment plan can reduce the bill each month to something you can afford, so you can stop worrying about trying to pay a bill you can't afford. Most medical providers will work with patients to set up a billing schedule that is affordable.

5. Opt for bankruptcy

When your bill is really too high, bankruptcy could be the right solution. Bankruptcy could help you completely eliminate this and other debts that are impacting your finances.

These are just a few ideas. If you are in over your head with debt, your attorney can help you look into your options.

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