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Medical debt still an issue for Kentucky residents

According to a study from the Urban Institute, in 2015 nearly 25 percent of working-age adults in the United States had past-due medical bills. Although this is a very high percentage, it is still an improvement over the numbers in 2012, when about 30 percent of individuals were in this situation.

Although it can help, insurance does not ensure that someone will not end up struggling to pay medical bills. One reason for this is that deductibles for medical care can be very high. In some cases, people's deductibles can run into the thousands of dollars.

Individuals who are most likely to struggle to pay medical bills tend to be younger, and millennials and generation Xers tend to be those having the most trouble. Additionally, those who make less than $35,000 are also liable to have a hard time avoiding or getting out of medical debt. The states with the highest rates of medical debt tend to be in the south, and Kentucky has the sixth highest rate of medical debt.

Medical debt can mount quickly since many procedures can cost thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars. While some people may be able to eliminate their debt with a repayment plan or a debt settlement, this form of debt relief may not be enough for some individuals. In these cases, it may be best for a person to file for bankruptcy. Both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 can help someone get rid of medical debt, and a lawyer could explain the difference between the two types of filings as well as the other eligibility requirements.

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