It is widely accepted throughout the United States that historically one of the common causes of bankruptcies is medical bills. Many people assume that those who file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection due to medical bills find themselves in that position because they do not have health insurance. It may come as a surprise to those people that this however is not always the case.
Throughout the state of Florida, individuals and families with health insurance may have a false sense of security about the odds of a medical issue leading them into financial hardship. According to a recent statistic in the first six months of 2011 close to one in three families throughout the country found it difficult to pay their medical bills. In fact, of the people facing bankruptcy as a result of insurmountable medical bills, close to two-thirds were in the position despite having health insurance.
Some people might find that hard to believe since for many the purpose of health insurance is to make sure that they do not run into financial hardship. The payments that become too much to handle are both co-pays as well as deductibles. Depending on the medical crisis, each can quickly mount.
For those finding themselves in this situation it may feel like they do not have any choices. They do however. Filing for bankruptcy may be the best way out of the predicament. A bankruptcy attorney can help determine if, based on the totality of the circumstances, it is a good option.
Source: Houston Chronicle, “Insured but bankrupt: The hidden side of health care costs,” Dr. Howard Brody, March 19, 2012