How Medical Bills Can Impact Your Life
When an accident occurs that leaves you seriously injured, seeking medical care is not an option; it’s absolutely necessary. But depending on your financial situation and your health insurance policy, seeking medical care can mean high medical bills. In addition to a deductible (which in itself can be thousands of dollars), your health insurance, assuming you have it, may not cover all of your treatment, meaning that you incur hundreds or thousands of dollars in expenses that you personally are liable for.
Large medical bills following an accident can have a serious and negative impact on your life. The following items are some of the effects, but working with an attorney who can represent you in pursuing damages via a personal injury claim can help.
Medical Bills Can Be a Serious Stressor after an Accident
Facing debt of any kind can be stressful. If you have been in an accident and have incurred medical debt, this stress may be compounded by the fact that your injuries prevent you from working, limiting or eliminating your income and providing you with no way of repaying your debts. The loss of income may make it challenging for you to continue paying your rent or mortgage, and otherwise provide for yourself and your family. The extra stress of unpaid medical debt can lead to anxiety and even depression.
Medical Debt Can Have Major Financial Consequences
The stress of paying your medical debt is not the biggest worry, although there is no doubt that constant anxiety about debt can lead to a diminished quality of life. The biggest consequence of unpaid medical debt is the impact that it can have on your financial future. After being involved in an accident and receiving medical treatment, there is a 180-day waiting period before that debt will show up on your credit report. From there, especially if debt continues to go unpaid, you may face:
- Lowered credit score;
- Harassment from debt collectors (medical providers can turn any unpaid medical debt over to a collection agency);
- Trouble getting a mortgage or renting an apartment;
- Difficulting in being approved for a loan;
- Inability to open new lines of credit; and
- Increased insurance rates.
Once medical debt shows up on your credit report, it can take years for it to go away. Experian reports that medical bill collections remain on your credit report for seven years.
What to Do if You Have Medical Bills after an Accident
If you have medical bills after an accident, you do not want to wait for the medical bills to be reported to a collection agency before you act. As soon as possible, you should hire a personal injury attorney who can negotiate with your medical provider. In many cases, medical providers will agree to put a hold on debt collection when a personal injury claim is underway, or may even forgive certain types of medical debts.
Personal injury lawyers also often have relationships with doctors who will provide medical care without upfront payment, only collecting compensation after you have been paid via a personal injury settlement. This allows you to get the care that you need without having to worry about debt collection harassment or hit to your credit score.
Call Our Lawyers Today for Competent Representation You Can Count On
Our Mississippi personal injury lawyers at the Gardner Law Firmunderstand how stressful and suffocating medical debt can feel, especially after you have been injured as a result of another party’s negligence. When you call our law office, we will get to work on your case immediately and do everything we can to mitigate the negative effects of unpaid medical bills and maximize your compensation amount.
Please schedule your free consultation with our law firm by sending us a message, calling us at 228-436-6555, or visiting one of our three office locations in person.