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Medical Bankruptcy in Indianapolis

Bankruptcy Attorneys frequently are confronted with requests for a Medical Bankruptcy in Indianapolis.   A “Medical Bankruptcy” is a term that many perspective bankruptcy clients use in order to describe a bankruptcy that only (or mostly) addresses large, burdensome medical debts.   When you file a “medical bankruptcy,”  you are filing n regular, Chapter 7 bankruptcy but with the goal of discharging all of your medical debts.

 Are All Medical Debts Dischargeable in a Medical Bankruptcy?

Generally, all medical debts are dischargeable in bankruptcy because they are regular, “unsecured” debts.   Medical debts come when you are unable to pay a certain amount or the entirety of the medical debt amount that resulted from illness or injury.  These are termed as “unsecured debts” because there is no property (such as a house or a car) that can be taken back under contract as a result of not paying the medical debts.  However, be careful.  Medical debt creditors CAN still file lawsuits.  These lawsuits allow medical creditors to seek garnishments and seize money from your bank account if they go far enough into the legal process.   Medical debts are just as important to address as personal loans, credit cards, or any other form of debt.    You need to seek a “medical bankruptcy” (as our clients call them) to discharge your medical debts in bankruptcy.

 Medical Debts are protected by the “Necessity” Doctrine

When you file a “medical bankruptcy” in Indiana, you are allowed usually to discharge ANY form of medical debt even if the procedure or care that created the medical bill happened right before you needed to file for bankruptcy.  This is because medical treatment is treated as a life “necessity” which is highly protected and cannot be subject (generally/usually) to a fraud or luxury-purchase-type analysis.  Essentially, you needed to get your medical (sometimes also dental) procedure done and your entitlement to discharge medical debts in bankruptcy CANNOT be taken away.

 Bankruptcy For Medical Debts: The “Necessity” Doctrine Can Backfire in Indiana

The “Necessity” doctrine can backfire if you file a “medical” bankruptcy in Indiana.   Due to the “Necessity” doctrine for Medical treatment (that you absolutely must have medical treatment in most cases and you do not have a choice), your SPOUSE can be held liable for YOUR medical bills.

Therefore, if you file a bankruptcy for medical debts in the Greater Indianapolis area, your spouse may also need to file for bankruptcy just to be safe EVEN IF SHE HAS NO OTHER FORM OF DEBTS.   This is because it may be possible for your creditors to assert Indiana Law and collect against a spouse for medical debts even after that spouse has filed bankruptcy.   Remember, your spouse can be held liable for your medical debts in Indiana in many situations.

 Medical Debt Bankruptcy: The Unfortunate Conclusion

As medical costs soar throughout the United States, many families find themselves in impossible debt situations due to no or insufficient medical insurance coverage.    We have seen several Indiana families that had FULL medical insurance polices, but still had to file medical debt bankruptcy because of the vast amount of non-covered items and deductibles that come with medical insurance these days.   Do not let medical debts give you impossible burdens to carry or destroy your credit.  Contact our office and we will discuss how bankruptcy and other alternatives can help you eliminate your medical debt.

Bankruptcy Attorney John Bymaster – Bymaster Bankruptcy Law Offices

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AVOIDING BANKRUPTCY IN INDIANA

Avoiding bankruptcy in Indiana can be accomplished many times through financial education and responsible, conservative living.   However, no level of planning can be a “bullet-proof,”  100% guarantee that the necessity for bankruptcy will never arise in life.  Therefore, this article will address two parts that we encourage everyone in Indiana to think about in their own lives: 1) Avoiding Bankruptcy and 2) Planning just in case the need for bankruptcy relief ever unexpectedly arises.

 PART ONE: AVOIDING BANKRUPTCY THROUGH FINANCIAL EDUCATION AND RESPONSIBLE LIVING

The best way to avoid bankruptcy is to learn as much as possible about basic financial principles and then ACTUALLY FOLLOW WHAT YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO!    We have all learned to some degree horrible and non-functional financial habits from our credit-based society, lack of financial education in schools, and lack of financial understanding inherited through our friends and family.   All those bad habits and faulty concepts (including greed, impatience, insecurity, and feelings of ineptitude) need to be ejected from our mind and replaced with sound, real-life financial realities.

Many people worry and complain about what they do not have: this is what causes them to take credit “short-cuts” to falsely achieve what they were unable to achieve through long-term financial responsibility.   The real fact is that nobody cares about the appearances of what you own except for you.  The question, “How to avoid Bankruptcy in Indiana?” can be answered simply: do not care about what everybody else in Indiana is doing or what they think.

“Keeping up appearances” is what causes many people to fall into bankruptcy.   I like how Zig Ziglar says to “be grateful for what you have and stop complaining – it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn’t solve any problems.”   In fact, trying “to have” before financial responsibility naturally delivers rightfully-bestowed possessions will create NUMEROUS problems.  One of these problems can many times be the need for bankruptcy.

The best advice: ignore what everybody else you know is doing.  If they are buying a $250,000 house, you make a plan to own a $85,000 house paid-in-full in 3 years.   If they are buying a new car, you go out and buy 3 used cars for $400 a piece.  If their goal is to get the most expensive, nice apartment they can find, you go out a find an apartment for $250 per month that is almost as nice as the one they pay $1500 per month to rent.   Impossible you say?   How do you know until you make it your number one goal and get the financial education and research behind it to make it happen?

 PART TWO OF AVOIDING BANKRUPTCY: PLANNING JUST IN CASE THE NEED FOR BANKRUPTCY EVER COMES

No amount of planning can perfectly insulate you from the uncertainty of life.  Therefore, it is very important also to plan for bankruptcy just in case the need for such relief ever comes.   How to avoid bankruptcy is perhaps not as important as how to avoid bankruptcy’s damage or disruption to your financial life.

Bankruptcy planning is a topic that could encompass hundreds of articles.  We will, therefore, keep this discussion very simple here.   When planning for the unexpected, it is important to realize that certain assets are protected from bankruptcy such as retirement accounts, your basic Indiana real estate and personal property exemptions, and other items.   If you have taken the time to become financial responsible and prosperous, it would be VERY WISE to diversify your possessions to include at least some substantial IRA, 401k, or other exempt items in case the need for bankruptcy ever arises.

If you are a contactor, own a business, or do any other form of transactions that can open you up to a greater level of potential liability, it is even more important to do good life planning to protect yourself from the unexpected.  If you are open to certain liabilities, perhaps your home should be purchased by your spouse or your home held as a “tenancy in entirety” in Indiana.   Also, 401k and IRA savings are even more important in such situations.  Remember, the entire point of this section of the article is only to alert you to the NEED for bankruptcy planning.   Any advice should only be sought through consultation with an Indiana or Indianapolis area accountant or a bankruptcy attorney.

 CONCLUSION: AVOID BANKRUPTCY BUT PLAN FOR THE WORST

With proper financial planning and education, how to avoid bankruptcy will become evident: a lifetime of financial success and responsibility.   However, because life is NEVER fully predictable, it would be very wise to make a financial plan that will insulate you to some extent even from the dangers of a worst case financial scenario such as bankruptcy.   The old admonition “Plan for the best, Prepare for the Worst” has always been good advice!

AVOIDING BANKRUPTCY IN INDIANA

Indianapolis Bankruptcy Attorney John F. Bymaster on Avoiding Bankruptcy

The Dangers of “Cheap” Bankruptcy – Indianapolis

 

What to Know about “Cheap” Bankruptcy in Indianapolis

Let’s discuss the dangers of “cheap” bankruptcy – Indianapolis.  You may have heard of impossibly good “deals” to file for bankruptcy.  These deals truly are “impossible” because you are usually not getting very much – at least for how much you pay.  You are only paying somebody in those situations (usually) to do the bankruptcy yourself.   If you are looking for an Indianapolis bankruptcy cheap, you may need to analyze first what it is you are actually paying for.

A very affordable, legitimate bankruptcy attorney usually charges about $500-$1000 and requires the $335 court cost (on the lowest end).  There could be very limited “community pro-bono” sort of options for low income people that could charge very slightly less.  These are usually very difficult to access because you must be below the poverty line and apply for help at a legal clinic.  Also, the amount of resources at these places are usually limited: there are too many people trying to get an Indianapolis bankruptcy cheap for the “pro-bono” resources available.

If you see an ad that says they are charging $44, $159, or even $299 for bankruptcy, be careful!  You may only be paying for a “bankruptcy preparation service” or worse you may only paying to get access to the bankruptcy forms (which are already free on the court’s website!).  In either of these services, you are essentially just paying somebody so that you can do the bankruptcy yourself.  They cannot help you do very much: they are not allowed to file the forms for you or give you any form of legal advice.  This is a “cheap” Indiana bankruptcy option, but you are not really getting very much for the price you pay.

These peddlers of “ultra-cheap” bankruptcy make light of how complex bankruptcy filings can be.  They act as if they are experts in bankruptcy, saying thing such as “you do not need to pay a bankruptcy attorney anything because all they do is fill out your forms.”  These statements cannot be farther from the truth.  A bankruptcy attorney does spend a considerable amount of time filing forms and dealing with the court and bankruptcy trustee.  However, the bankruptcy attorney’s knowledge and experience is what will make your bankruptcy a smooth, easy, and safe process.  Without a bankruptcy attorney, you could lose your house, cars, or even a great deal of money.  Making a knowledgeable bankruptcy plan is essential: it is more essential than getting your Indiana bankruptcy cheap.

Therefore, you may need to be careful about having unrealistic expectations when trying to find a bankruptcy “cheap.”  Most people want a knowledgeable guide to take them through the bankruptcy process safely.  You can rest assured at our office that we can serve as such a guide: you can call us and we will affordably (not cheaply – joke) guide you through the bankruptcy process.

-Indianapolis Bankruptcy Attorney John Bymaster on the Dangers of “Cheap” Bankruptcy

Cheap Bankruptcy