Are adult children required to pay the medical bill of their deceased parents?

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Are adult children required to pay the medical bill of their deceased parents?

My wife’s parents both died this year, several months apart. I want to know if she and brother are required to pay their outstanding medical bill bills out of their inheritance?

Asked on December 28, 2016 under Estate Planning, Michigan

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, a child does not inherit their parent's debts. That is unless they specifically assumed any such debts (for example was a co-signer on a loan, etc.) or there was a pre-death transfer of an asset for the purpose of defeating a potential creditor claim against the estate. However, the deceased's estate is reponsiblde for the payment of all bills and any other outstanding debts. Only after they have been paid can the remainder of the estate, if any, be distributed to beneficiaries/heirs.


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