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People are struggling with medical debt

According to a survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation and The New York Times, people in Florida and throughout the country are struggling with medical expenses even when they have health insurance. The study found that about 20 percent of Americans who had health insurance were having trouble paying their medical bills. Among people who did not have health insurance, more than half had suffered financially due to medical expenses.

Among the people who had health insurance, about a quarter said their debt was the result of an unexpected claim denial while nearly one-third said they went to an out-of-network provider. Around 25 percent of respondents said that their medical expenses were under $1,000, but almost one-third said theirs were more than $5,000. Expenses were $10,000 for 13 percent.

Nearly 20 percent of uninsured people and almost one-third of insured people said they used savings, retirement funds or college funds to pay the bills. About 10 percent of people without insurance and nearly 20 percent of people with insurance said they also had to get money from other sources to pay bills.

As this survey demonstrates, people may struggle with debt for a number of reasons that are out of their control. Other reasons that people fall into debt include an unexpected job loss or a divorce. People who are unable to keep up with their financial obligations may want to meet with an lawyer to see if filing for bankruptcy would be an appropriate form of debt relief. The two main forms of consumer bankruptcy are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Each has a set of eligibility requirements that an lawyer can outline.

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