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Financial Fallout: How to Deal with Unexpected Medical Bills

Nov 21, 2017

Your health should be one of your top priorities. However, it may not make it any easier to pay for exams, medicine or other medical needs. Fortunately, there are some ways that you can deal with an unexpected medical bill without completely ruining your finances.

Ask about Sliding Scale Fees

Some doctors or other medical providers will charge you on a sliding scale. That means that you may pay less than full price based on your income. It may also mean that a portion of your treatment will be taken care of for free.

This may reduce your bill from thousands of dollars to $500 or less depending on what you need done. Working with a training hospital or free clinic may also help you reduce the cost of getting needed treatment.

Your Insurance May Cover Some of the Cost

Just because you have been billed for services rendered doesn’t mean that you are actually responsible for paying. In some cases, your insurance company may actually cover the cost of a prescription drug or for being seen by a doctor.

If you have reached your maximum out-of-pocket limit for the year, charges that you have received may be reversed.

Work with an Attorney

If you have been hurt through no fault of your own, it may be possible to seek compensation for your medical costs. An attorney like Bellotti Law Group, P.C. or someone similar may work with you to get compensation for medical bills, lost wages and other expenses. 

It may also be possible for an attorney to get your doctor or other provider to hold off on demanding payment until after your case is resolved.

Consider Bankruptcy

Filing for bankruptcy is something that should be considered a last resort if you can’t pay your medical costs. However, if you truly can’t pay what you owe, it may be possible to have medical debt discharged while retaining some or all of your property. 

While it may cause a hit to your credit score, an unpaid bill sent to collections may hurt your credit even more. Bankruptcy may also put an end to creditor or debt collector phone calls, letters or other attempts to contact you.

If you have an unexpected medial bill, it may feel like your financial world is collapsing around you. The good news is that you have many options to help handle this expense. Working with an attorney, negotiating with care providers or filing for bankruptcy may all offer ways out of your debt dilemma.

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