If my mother-in-law does not have health care coverage, could my wife and I be at risk of the hospital coming after us for the bill?

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If my mother-in-law does not have health care coverage, could my wife and I be at risk of the hospital coming after us for the bill?

Asked on July 8, 2013 under Bankruptcy Law, Illinois

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Your mother-in-law is responsible for her own medical bills.  You and your wife are not liable for your mother-in-law's medical bills.  If your mother-in-law is 65, she should apply for Medicare.

If your mother-in-law cannot afford to pay her hospital bill, she should consider filing bankruptcy.  Depending on her income, she may be eligible to file Chapter 7, which is straight liquidation and eliminates certain types of debts.  If she is not eligible to file Chapter 7, she can file Chapter 13; however, Chapter 13 bankruptcy requires a plan (budget) for repayment of creditors.


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