If I owe a lot of money to hospitals, can I file for bankruptcy? 27 Answers as of May 16, 2013

I also want to know what bankruptcy is.

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Philip R. Boardman, Attorney at Law
Philip R. Boardman, Attorney at Law | Phil Boardman
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 5/16/2013
Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis
Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis | Eric Lewis
Answer Applies to: Indiana
Replied: 5/8/2013
Moore Taylor Law Firm, P.A.
Moore Taylor Law Firm, P.A. | Jane Downey
Yes. You should make a consultation appointment with a certified specialist.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 5/7/2013
Law Office of D.L. Drain, P.A.
Law Office of D.L. Drain, P.A. | Diane L. Drain
Yes, but please understand that bankruptcy is a very complicated process. It is wise to talk to an experienced bankruptcy attorney before deciding to take this important step. I am attaching a link to some free videos that explain how bankruptcy works: http://www.dianedrain.com/bankruptcy-for-an-individual/ Most Arizona consumer bankruptcy attorneys offer a free consultation about the basics of bankruptcy. Please take time to educate yourself about bankruptcy and to determine which attorney is the best to assist you in the process. Don't assume the attorney is being completely honest about their experience and capabilities. Check them out. Avoid the attorneys who advertise on TV or profess a 100% success rate in their Internet ads. It costs hundreds or thousands of dollars for these ads and someone has to pay for them - the clients. These attorneys mass produce the work and do not offer the client the hands on assistance that is necessary in a well-planned bankruptcy. Normally these firms assign all or most of the work to paralegals and the client rarely talks to an attorney. When interviewing the attorney ask them how long they have practiced bankruptcy law. Ask what percentage of their practice is focused on consumer work. Ask whether they are experienced in both chapter 7 and chapter 13 cases. Ask the attorney for references. Ask about their policy of returning phone calls. They should be committed to answering specific questions about your situation and help you understand your options. If, after talking with them you are still confused about the issues you raised, find another attorney.
Answer Applies to: Arizona
Replied: 5/3/2013
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
Yes, done all the time.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/3/2013
    Guardian Law Group PLLC
    Guardian Law Group PLLC | C. David Hester
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Danville Law Group | Scott Jordan
    Yes, you can file bankruptcy for debts related to medical expenses. Bankruptcy, simply, is a legal process whereby you seek a discharge of your debts, so that you do not have to pay the debt. It is a process sanctioned in the U.S. Constitution.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Wasson & Thornhill
    Wasson & Thornhill | Leeann Thornill
    Bankruptcy can help you wipe out all of your medical debt if you cannot afford to pay it. You'll want to have a consultation with an attorney do get into the detail.
    Answer Applies to: Kentucky
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Rosenberg & Press
    Rosenberg & Press | Max L. Rosenberg
    You can discharge hospital and medical bills. You should Google chapter 7 to get a clearer picture of bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Portland Bankruptcy Law Group
    Portland Bankruptcy Law Group | Christopher J. Kane
    Yes, you can file bankruptcy and be rid of your liability on those medical bills, as well as your other debts. When you file bankruptcy, on the day you file a court order is entered, call the "automatic stay", that forbids creditors from pursuing collection activity against you. When you finish your bankruptcy, you receive a discharge, which is a permanent court order that forbids collection activities on all dischargeable debts.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    The Law Offices of Kristy Qiu
    The Law Offices of Kristy Qiu | Mengjun Qiu
    Medical bills are considered unsecured debts, so yes, they can be discharged in bankruptcy. There is no short answer to the question of "what is bankruptcy." There is a lot of information that you need to know before you can decide whether it's a good choice for you. The decision will also depend on a number of variables, for example, the amount of assets you have, and your income. You can go to the Department of Justice website to learn more about bankruptcy and how it can benefit you. Although the easiest way is probably through an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    J. Norman Stark, Attorney & Reg. Architect | J. NORMAN STARK, ATTORNEY
    Yes. Here is a basic explanation of a Chapter 7. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is that section of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code that deals with asset liquidation, which means the selling of all non-exempt assets by a court appointed trustee, who applies the proceeds of the sale to pay your creditors. In return, a debtor receives a discharge, which releases a debtor from all dischargeable debts, and orders creditors to forever stop their attempts to collect the discharged debts. Once a debt is discharged, a debtor is forever relieved of the obligation to pay a debt. Some debts cannot be discharged. A few examples include certain taxes, alimony, child support, student loans, debts not listed in the Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition, and debts incurred as a result of defrauding or misleading a creditor.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Conner Law Offices
    Conner Law Offices | Melissa Conner
    Yes, medical bills are one of the types of debt that commonly cause people to file bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    The Law Offices of Deborah Ann Stencel | Deborah A. Stencel
    Medical bills can generally be discharged in personal bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    A Fresh Start
    A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
    Bankruptcy is a process under federal law to allow your debts to be forgiven in exchange for you making full disclosure of your entire financial history. In some instances, you may lose valuable property which a trustee will sell to pay your debts. I would urge you to consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney in your community for specific advice, as the devil is always in the details.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    The Bankruptcy Law Group @ Robert H. Johnson LLC | Robert H. Johnson
    You should speak to a bankruptcy attorney. Most offer free consultations.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
    If you qualify for bankruptcy, then all your medical debts and other credit card debts will be wiped out
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Charles Schneider, P.C.
    Charles Schneider, P.C. | Charles J. Schneider
    Yes. Chapter 7 Bankruptcy results in a discharge (forgiveness) of debt.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Clearly, you need to consult with an attorney. Bankruptcy might be one of your options.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Law Office of Ameet Gandhi
    Law Office of Ameet Gandhi | Ameet Gandhi
    Typically debt for medical bills is unsecured debt like credit card debt and would get completely wiped if you qualify for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is the legal framework under with a person who is insolvent (meaning they cannot afford to pay their debts) has their debts either wiped out (Chapter 7) or restructured (Chapter 13) under a payment plan.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Bordeaux Law, P.C.
    Bordeaux Law, P.C. | Clifford Bordeaux
    Yes most likely you can. Bankruptcy is a legal proceeding that allows you to reduce or eliminate debts.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Law Offices of A. J. Mitchell, LLC
    Law Offices of A. J. Mitchell, LLC | A. J. Mitchell
    Yes, that is one of the primary reasons for filing bankruptcy. However, I need additional information to advise which type of bankruptcy would be right for you.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Moffa & Bonacquisti, P.A.
    Moffa & Bonacquisti, P.A. | John A. Moffa
    The answer to the first question is: maybe. The answer to the second question is very involved. I suggest you check online for a good article on bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Weber & Phillips, P.A.
    Weber & Phillips, P.A. | John G. Phillips
    Bankruptcy is a law that allows people who cannot pay their debts to discharge (wipe out) most kinds of debt. Hospital bills can be discharged in bankruptcy so you can definitely get help with that issue through bankruptcy. Many attorneys offer free or reduced cost consultations so I would suggest calling one in your area to get more details.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C.
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C. | Stuart M. Nachbar
    All Bankruptcies are governed by Title 11 of the United States Code. There are several different types of bankruptcies. There is Chapter 7, 9, 11, 12 and 13. Below we will deal with Chapters 7 and 13, which are the two most commons types. To obtain relief under chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code, the debtor may be an individual, a partnership, or a corporation or other business entity. Subject to the "means test" described below for individual debtors, chapter 7 may be used no matter the amount of the debts. An individual cannot file under chapter 7 or any other chapter, if during the preceding 180 days: a prior bankruptcy petition was dismissed due to the debtor's willful failure to appear before the court or comply with orders of the court, or the debtor voluntarily dismissed the previous case after creditors sought relief from the bankruptcy court to recover property upon which they hold liens. In addition, all individuals, no matter under what chapter a person is filing, are required to obtain a "Credit Counseling Certificate" within 180 days before filing from an approved credit counseling agency either in an individual or group briefing. The "Means test" is one of the determining factors as to whether a person can file for a chapter 7 or a chapter 13. If the debtor's "current monthly income" is more than the state median, the Bankruptcy Code requires application of a "means test" to determine whether the chapter 7 filing is abusive. Abuse is presumed if the debtor's aggregate current monthly income over 5 years, minus certain allowed expenses, is more than (i) $11,725, or (ii) 25% of the debtor's nonpriority unsecured debt, as long as that amount is at least $7,025. The debtor may rebut a presumption of abuse only by a showing of special circumstances that justify additional expenses or adjustments of current monthly income. Unless the debtor overcomes the presumption of abuse, the case will generally be converted to chapter 13 (with the debtor's consent) or will be dismissed. Chapter 13 offers individuals a number of advantages over liquidation under chapter 7. Most significantly, chapter 13 offers individuals an opportunity to save their homes from foreclosure. By filing under this chapter, individuals can stop foreclosure proceedings and may cure delinquent mortgage payments over time. They must still make all mortgage payments that come due during the chapter 13 case timely. Another advantage of chapter 13 is that it allows individuals to spread out payments of certain debts and extend them over the life of the chapter 13 plan. A chapter 13 plan is a minimum of 36 months and a maximum of sixty months. Doing this may lower the payments. Finally, chapter 13 acts like a consolidation loan under which the individual makes the plan payments to a chapter 13 trustee who then distributes payments to creditors. Individuals will have no direct contact with creditors while under chapter 13 protection. One of the primary purposes of bankruptcy is to discharge certain debts to give an honest individual debtor a "fresh start." The debtor has no liability for discharged debts. In a chapter 7 and chapter 13 case, however, a discharge is only available to individual debtors, not to partnerships or corporations. Although an individual chapter 7 case usually results in a discharge of debts, the right to a discharge is not absolute, and some types of debts are not discharged. Moreover, a bankruptcy discharge does not remove a lien on the actual property just the personal liability.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    Idaho Bankruptcy Law | Paul Ross
    There is not a maximum or minimum amount of debt you must owe to file a bankruptcy. A Chapter 13 has some debt limits, but a Chapter 7 is unlimited (as long as you qualify). Regarding what bankrupt is, the name itself indicates that your banking has ruptured. You are declared legally insolvent, or that you have more debt than you have ability to pay. Therefore bankruptcy is when a Court will administer your affairs for you, resolve it, and place you back on a new path.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 5/2/2013
    The Law Offices of Sandra D. Kresch, LLC | Sandra Kresch
    Chapter 7 bankruptcy will eliminate medical debt. You need to hire a lawyer to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 5/2/2013
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