Are medical bills worse than death? In a survey done last year, nearly half of workers interviewed, aged 40 to 50, feared paying the debt from a critical illness to be worse than death itself. To deal with the cost of a critical illness suffered, 28% used retirement savings to deal with the cost, 28% used “emergency funds”, 21% borrowed money, 12% filed for bankruptcy and 11 percent sold their home or had it foreclosed.
Since many Americans already have too little money set aside for retirement as it is, I would discourage anyone in such a situation from drawing on their retirement funds or borrowing against their home to pay such bills. If you have done everything you can to pay such bills and cannot get ahead, then some form of bankruptcy may be the best way to deal with debts from a critical illness without jeopardizing your retirement or your residence. Depending on your circumstances either a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 repayment plan may be wisest financial decision for dealing with overwhelming medical bills.
By John Hugg