Medical debt frequent cause of personal bankruptcy

Connecticut job seekers prioritize several different factors when looking for work. From looking for certain base salaries to commuting distances, one of the biggest considerations is often employer-offered health insurance. Unfortunately, even securing a decent health insurance policy can’t fully immunize a person to falling into medical debt, which is a significant contributor to personal bankruptcy.

Many people banked a significant amount of hope in the passage of the Affordable Care Act, which was supposed to help solve many of the issues associated with for-profit health care. A recent study from the Consumer Bankruptcy Project found that despite the program’s best efforts, this was not the case. The ACA was passed back in 2010, and 66.5 percent of bankruptcies filed between 2013 and 2016 were attributed to medical issues. These bankruptcies were either directly related to unaffordable medical bills or loss of income because of illness.

The lead author of the study noted that over half a million U.S. households routinely lose most of their income to medical costs. He also pointed out that middle-class Americans are particularly at risk, as even seemingly good health insurance policies are full of loopholes for the companies, high deductibles and frequent co-pays. Those with prolonged illnesses are particularly at risk because they can lose both their employment and insurance in a single blow.

It is frighteningly easy for the average person in Connecticut to find themselves in unimaginable amount of debt. All it takes is a single financial emergency, such as an unexpected medical bill, a sudden job loss or more to put someone into a difficult situation. While personal bankruptcy is not an immediate fix, it provides individuals with a concrete path toward debt relief.