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Are adult children responsible for uninsured parents medical bills?

Seattle, WA |

My mother is uninsured and went to the emergency room at the hospital. Since my address was given in the ER and she can't afford it, the bill was sent to me. Am I responsible for this bill? Also it seems quite high. I'm sure if my insurance were involved, the negotiated rate would be much lower. Should I pay, negotiate, or ignore this bill sent to me?

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Attorney answers 1


You did not receive any services from the hospital - your mother did. She is responsible for the medical bill. Assuming you did not sign any paperwork guaranteeing payment, I see not basis for the hospital collecting from you. If your mother is uninsured, she should contact the financial services department of the hospital and see if they have special programs for uninsured patients. I believe most will work with your mother to either forgive the balance or agree to a payment plan. I would contact the hospital and point out that they are sending it to the wrong address. Good luck!

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