Are parents responsible for their 20-year-old college student’s medical bills that are not covered by insurance?

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Are parents responsible for their 20-year-old college student’s medical bills that are not covered by insurance?

The parents did not sign any documents agreeing to be responsible for the bills. The child was covered by her own student medical insurance plan.

Asked on May 14, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A 20-year old is a legal adult; if her parents did not provide her medical insurance or otherwise agree to cover her bills, they would not be responsible for them. The parents should double check any documentation they have signed, agreements entered into, etc. in conjunction with the child's schooling or the student medical plan--it is possible that, if they signed anything with the school, that one or another document obligates them to pick up any costs not covered by the student plan.


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