Ignoring Medical Bills: Financial Consequences | Zero Debt
The Impact Of Ignoring Your Medical Bills - blog | zerodebt.co.za

Impact of Ignoring Medical Bills

It can easily happen that you go to the doctor or get some kind of medical treatment only to find out afterwards that you cannot afford to pay for the treatment that you received. In some cases, the treatments might be relatively small. In other cases, they can be large and extremely expensive.

Certain medical procedures must be paid for out of pocket even if you have medical assistance coverage, as not all medical procedures are covered by medical aid.However, if you receive your bill and refuse to pay it, it can have significant consequences that can affect your future  financial stability.

Accumulation of Interest and Penalties

As with any other bill that goes unpaid, the service provider or lending institution may very well start applying interest and penalties to the outstanding balance. As a result, the longer the bill goes unpaid, the more it grows. 

Thanks to these additional charges being added, these penalties can be quite substantial, significantly increasing the overall owed amount, which over time can make the debt completely unmanageable and push you into further financial hardship.

Damage To Your Credit Score

One of the worst consequences of unpaid bills is the potential impact it can have on your credit score. When your credit score gets knocked down, it can severely affect your ability to get approved for loans and financing in the future. 

When unpaid medical bills are reported to credit bureaus, they will begin to appear on your credit record as an outstanding obligation. This gets even worse if a judgement is put against your name, making you look like a high-risk lender and making it more expensive and difficult to get credit going forward.

Legal Action and Debt Collection Could Ensue

If your bills go unpaid for long enough, many medical providers will seek the assistance of debt collection agencies to recover the unpaid bills. These debt collection agencies often report you to the credit bureau, and it can result in a judgement against you in court. 

Once such a judgement is obtained, a creditor can take further steps to secure that debt, suing you for your assets or a portion of your wages. These types of legal proceedings are also expensive for you and can be time-consuming, adding even more of a financial burden to the one you already have.

Limiting Your Access To Future Healthcare

Many medical practitioners will outright deny you further treatment if your bills remain unpaid. In some cases, healthcare providers will refuse to treat patients with outstanding debts even if they’re to other medical practitioners. Therefore, they’ll requirie upfront payment before they will treat you. This can put a damper on your medical treatment options, forcing you to look far and wide for someone who will help you.

Zero Debt is primed and ready to help you overcome your debt obligations. If you have unpaid medical bills, as well as other debts that you cannot seem to manage, then we are here to provide you with counsel and help you find a way out. Contact us today.