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Collection of medical bills, what can I do with no money or job

Elgin, IL |

broke my leg in March of 08. At the time I had no job or insurance. Made this clear to all hospital staff when I entered ER. Now I have collection agencies calling 7 days a week threatening me, trying to take me to court, I have always stated that I still don't have a job. I own no house or car and have no money. Please help!

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Attorney answers 3


First, note that your situation calls for a Chapter 7 liquidation, plain and simple. Second, don't think that if you declare you have "no money" your obligation to pay is waived. Instead, take a look at the Legal Guides I've put online through Avvo as well as the useful information posted by other practitioners. You will agree that Chapter 7 is the most efficient and economical, way to handle your case. But it will still cost you so do your research and find a lawyer whose rates fit your expectations.


You may need to file a chapter 7 bankruptcy and that will eliminate the debts. Please consult an experienced bankruptcy attorney in your area.


The creditors have a right to collect the debt. Regardless your circumstances at the time, they were charges that you incurred without any specific agreement that the services were being rendered without charge.

In your circumstances, as described, it sounds like, at this time, the creditors will not have any basis to collect from you. They may file suit and obtain a judgment, but without wages or assets there is not anything from which they are likely to be able to collect that would not be exempt from judgment. You should consult an attorney to better review your circumstances, confirm any likelihood of collection proceeding against you, and assist you with claiming exemptions if necessary.

If your debts rise to a level that you may need to consider reorganizing, you should consult a bankruptcy attorney about your options, timing, etc. You should do so even if you have filed bankruptcy before.

If the creditors contact with you seems excessive or harsh, you seek advice about protections available through the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

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