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How to deal with unpaid medical debts

Florida residents may feel anxiety or stress after hearing from a debt collector about an unpaid medical bill. In some cases, those who couldn’t afford to pay their bill originally may not be in a position to pay it after getting that call. Those who are facing a lawsuit over an unpaid medical debt should plan on going to court. Otherwise, the debt collector or other party seeking payment will win by default.

However, it is also a good idea to verify that the debt is valid or that the debt collector has the right person. If a judgement is levied against a debtor, there is the possibility that wages may be garnished to cover the balance owed. Under federal law, a debtor must be allowed to keep up to 75 percent of their paycheck or at least $217.50 a week depending on which is greater.

In some cases, a debtor may be able to put a stop to wage garnishment because he or she was improperly served. This means that papers were not served in person or were sent to the wrong address. If that happens, an individual may have various options depending on the specific circumstances in the case. Of course, it may be possible to prevent a lawsuit by pointing out errors in billing that may make a balance owed easier to manage.

Those who are seeking debt relief from large medical bills may wish to take a closer look at filing for bankruptcy. Doing so may make it easier to have debts discharged or restructured. While a case is open, creditors generally cannot contact a debtor or take other actions in an effort to collect a debt. This may help a debtor retain property while getting current on outstanding debt balances.

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