For a long time, it’s been well known that medical debt is a serious problem in the United States. With the way that the healthcare system is set up, even those who have insurance can get strapped with overwhelming debt. This can sometimes happen even with ailments that seem relatively simple.
In 2020, these numbers were brought up a lot during the presidential election and it was often said that Americans had about $81 billion in outstanding medical debt. That’s an incredible amount of debt, but a new study shows that it may be massively higher. They put the actual toll at $140 billion.
It’s also worth noting that even this study says that $140 billion is the minimum that they expect. The actual total could be much higher, and it could keep going upward in years to come. As long as the American health care system stays set up the way that it is right now, this is not likely a problem that is going to go away.
What options do you have for debt relief?
You do have options if you’re facing this type of debt. For example, medical bills are the number one reason for debt collection operations, but they are also one of the top reasons that people file for bankruptcy. If you’ve been hearing from collections agencies, you may be wondering what tactics you can use to get those calls to stop. Bankruptcy is something that you may want to consider, as medical debt can be discharged in bankruptcy through Chapter 7 or consolidated through Chapter 13.
This can be a complicated process, so it’s very important for you to understand exactly what legal steps to take.