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Medical bills remain a leading reason for bankruptcy

News stories, commentary in opinion columns and open debate throughout the county have frequently addressed the rising costs of healthcare. While the politics of health insurance and health coverage remain brisk – and often divisive – costs are not always manageable for people in the Cincinnati area. Staying healthy is not always something any of us can truly control. Even with health insurance coverage, through work or through a individual policy, costs may suddenly become overwhelming.

The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that more than 25 percent of the adult population across the country not only face medical debt, but have difficulty managing their medical bills, according to USA Today. Researchers say that 40 percent of the U.S. population saw an increase in medical debt in 2014 alone. 

Medical bills often arise unexpectedly

Many hardworking people in Ohio and Kentucky focus on maintaining a strict household budget – controlling credit card debt and putting money into savings. That may be why medical debt becomes so troubling for our society. A medical emergency can turn a manageable financial situation into a difficult debt problem that is hard to conquer. Medical debt has long been considered a significant factor in why people seek debt relief under the Bankruptcy Code.

Statistics change from story to story and from year to year on the impact that medical debt has upon households and our overall economy. However, trying to manage overwhelming debt is not a political issue, but a household issue.

Many people run through their savings accounts in an effort to keep up with medical bills. Others take on second jobs. When debt becomes oppressive, there may be other options. Reviewing every legal debt relief option, including negotiations with creditors to filing for bankruptcy, is important for anyone who wants to find meaningful debt relief to restore financial health. 

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