Dividing Medical Bills
Many couples get divorced for financial reasons. Things like mounting debt and any associated stress often cause a couple to separate, and medical bills can certainly be part of that equation.
The challenge then becomes determining who is responsible for the medical debt, since deciding to get a divorce does not automatically free you from bills or debts.
At the Law Office of Laurence J. Brock, we can help you make sense of your financial situation.
How Are Medical Bills Divided in a Divorce?
This really depends on how your assets and debts are divided in general. One thing to keep in mind is timing. Were the medical bills incurred before you legally separated or afterward? If you and your spouse know that you will get divorced and you foresee massive medical bills on the horizon, you should legally separate and get a court order first. That is the only way to protect you from being responsible for future medical bills.
A Lawyer in Rancho Cucamonga Can Help You Organize Your Medical Bills
Since timing is an issue, it is a good idea to sit down with a lawyer and go through the debts to determine which ones you may or may not have a level of responsibility for. In cases of major illness or surgical procedures, whether you were legally separated or living apart when the event took place can be helpful in determining responsibility.
Separating Assets and Debts in a Divorce
When it comes to debts in general, the court will make a determination as to who is responsible for what. This is done after looking at the entire situation, so everything needs to be disclosed in your financial statements. Typically, a judge will try to be as fair as possible with the division of both assets and debts. This way, one person does not get all the benefits of the marriage, while the other gets all the liability. To determine what is fair, you should work with a lawyer in Rancho Cucamonga to complete your financial disclosures.
Ensuring Fair Financial Treatment in a Divorce
If you are concerned that you will be treated unfairly and given a mountain of debts that you should not have to pay, you need to work with a divorce attorney right away. The first thing you can do to protect yourself is to become legally separated, since this will stop the debts from increasing. Next, we can go to work building a case for why you should not be responsible for particular debts.
In the case of medical bills, there are certain factors to take into consideration, such as when they occurred and what they were for. As an example, if your spouse had elective surgery, that would not necessarily be your responsibility at all. If, however, the bills were associated with a legitimate medical condition, you may have partial liability. To discuss this further, call 909-466-7661.
Insurance Companies Collecting on Medical Bills After a Divorce: Get Help From a Lawyer in Rancho Cucamonga
If you were married at the time the medical bills were incurred, there is a good chance you also had shared medical insurance and therefore shared liability from the insurance company’s perspective. In this case, they may try to collect payment from you while you are separated or after your divorce.
The final divorce judgement will determine if you are responsible for paying them. As a family lawyer in Rancho Cucamonga, I can help you communicate with the insurance company so they understand what you are and are not responsible for.
Protect Yourself by Working With a Divorce Attorney
To ensure that you are treated fairly in your divorce and are not stuck with debts that should not be yours, call a lawyer in Rancho Cucamonga. At the Law Office of Laurence J. Brock, we would be happy to provide you with a consultation.