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Medical debt problems are financially crippling baby boombers

As we grow older, it's only natural that our medical expenses become higher -- but these expenses can cause serious financial problems for individuals who are already struggling to make ends meet with their meager Social Security payouts.

According to a recent article from USA Today, numerous Americans are struggling with high medical debt that is hurting their financial security. Furthermore, the rising costs associated with medical care have made medical debt the primary reason why Americans are filing for bankruptcy these days

The real reason Americans are filing for bankruptcy

We see a lot of information in the news about trillion-dollar credit card debt figures in the United States. While it's true that Americans are having a hard time paying off their credit card bills, however, the real area of concern isn't credit cards. It's medical debt. According to bankruptcy statistics from 2014, approximately 40 percent of Americans owed money because of a medical problem.

Also, the New York Times reported in 2016 that 20 percent of Americans with medical insurance, who were below the age of 65, had a difficult time paying for their medical care. Sixty-three percent of these individuals say that they spent all of their savings to pay for their health care costs. Forty-two percent of them said they had to take on more work to pay for everything.

It's terrifying to think, but health insurance isn't a "get out of medical debt" free card anymore. The high costs of insurance premiums, copays and non-insured health expenses are getting in the way of the financial security of Americans.

Americans need to set up an emergency savings plan

One of the primary problems leading to medical debt trouble is the fact that Americans haven't set up an emergency savings. It's vital to be prepared for an emergency financial expense, like a medical problem. In order to do this, American consumers should analyze their health insurance plan, determine how much a catastrophic medical event could cost in terms of copays and other uninsured expenses, and work toward setting aside a fun that will cover these costs. With an emergency fund like this in place, consumers will have a better chance of staying financially secure in spite of a medical emergency.

Are you struggling with medical debt?

If you're underwater financially because of medical debts, you might want to investigate various debt resolution strategies. In some cases, bankruptcy could be the answer; however, other debt resolution strategies could also help your situation.

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