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Not having enough medical insurance could lead to bankruptcy

Between the monthly premiums and the out-of-pocket expenses that accompany medical insurance, many New Jersey residents are finding that having medical insurance does not seem to be saving them any money. Individuals who contract illnesses or are injured in accidents often end up with an overwhelming amount of medical debt. This situation could lead to the need to file bankruptcy.

There seems to be a delicate balance between being able to afford the premiums and being able to pay the out-of-pocket costs associated with using the coverage. Many New Jersey residents can only afford to pay a certain amount in monthly premiums, which limits the type of health care coverage they can obtain. This often means that the deductibles are higher and patients will owe more in medical bills -- especially for a protracted illness or lengthy recovery from an accident.

A recent study revealed that nearly 31 million Americans did not have adequate health care coverage, and nearly half of them are burdened with medical bills. Everyone is required to obtain health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act, but the deductibles make it far too expensive for the average person to use. Some people are beginning to ask what the point is of having coverage if it using it is cost prohibitive. In many cases, they were better off uninsured because they did not have to pay monthly premiums.

A patient's portion of the medical costs can quickly become overwhelming and lead to financial difficulties. Therefore, many people are unable to pay the bills, which ultimately end up going to collections, which only increases the burden placed on the patient. Filing for bankruptcy might eliminate those medical bills. Moreover, once the bankruptcy is filed, all collection efforts must stop during the process. Of course, this does not fix the problems with the system, but it can provide individuals with the financial relief they need.

Source: krqe.com, "Skimpy insurance seen by Democrats as next health care issue", Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, May 25, 2015

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