If you suffer a serious injury, whether in a car accident, workplace mishap, or slip-and-fall incident, the fallout can be stressful. The body is a miraculous entity that can often heal itself if given time, but it often requires medical assistance, and that may get expensive.
If you’ve been injured at work, workers’ compensation should cover the bulk of the expenses, unless your claim is denied. The same goes for a car crash that’s the fault of someone else.
In some cases, the insurance coverage won’t be enough to cover your medical bills. Or perhaps you didn’t qualify for insurance coverage. How do you cover your bills in this case?
Here are some things you can do.
1. Focus on the Essentials First
Your medical bills may pile up, but you shouldn’t lose sight of the most necessary items you need to live. Food, shelter, heat, lights, and transportation are the real essentials.
Pay for these items first before you worry about anything else. It might damage your credit slightly to delay payment on certain bills, but your credit can be repaired. That’s better than ending up on the street.
2. Look for Things You Can Cut
After you’ve taken care of the vital items, turn to the non-essentials. When you’re drowning in bills, services like cable television and the latest iPhone are no longer priorities.
By cutting some of these costly expenses from your budget, you’ll realize significant savings that can go toward your bills.
3. Use Credit Cards as Sparingly as Possible
Your first instinct when hit with expensive bills may be to put everything on a credit card, particularly if you have several cards with high limits. But don’t overlook the high interest rates associated with these cards because that debt can mount quickly.
Transferring your medical debt to a high-interest credit card might give you a brief respite from creditors, but you’ll have to pay it back — and more — in the long run.
4. Pick Up Some Extra Work
This might be difficult if your injury makes standard labor work a challenge. However, remote jobs can be a suitable option. Some of the best-paying and simple remote jobs include:
Virtual Assistant ($10-$15 per hour)
Customer Service Representative ($10-$15 per hour)
Freelance writer ($10-$50 per hour)
Online tutor/English teacher ($15-$20 per hour)
These jobs, and more like them, can be performed by people of varying skill levels and can supplement your income when you need it most.
5. File a Lawsuit
Ideally, someone’s insurance will cover the bulk of your expenses, but it doesn’t always work out that way. Sometimes, the at-fault party will get off scot-free, leaving you to cope with your injury and the resulting lifestyle changes alone.
That’s where personal injury lawsuits can help. They’re not designed to assist greedy folks to get rich, but to help those who desperately need compensation to cover their medical bills.
Speak to an attorney with a good reputation in your neighborhood about filing a lawsuit in pursuit of medical bill coverage.
6. Ask for Help
Most people have friends and family who hate to see them suffer and can often provide a little financial help if you’re willing to ask.
When you’re dealing with creditors and medical bills you might never be able to pay, it’s past time to swallow your pride and ask for a little help. It’s often easier to repay friends and family than it is to repay creditors.
7. Create Payment Plans
Most healthcare facilities will issue bills in a lump-sum amount, but if you can’t pay it all at once, they’re often willing to work with you. Call your creditors and explain your situation. If you name an amount you think you can pay each month, they’re likely to try to make that work.
They’ll run your credit and check your history to determine whether this might be a viable option for you. More often than not, your request will be granted.
8. Seek Government Benefits
The government offers certain programs designed to help citizens who are overwhelmed with bills of any kind. When you’re on your last dime and struggling to make ends meet, don’t feel guilty about taking advantage of such benefits. They’re made for you, and they could mean the difference between drowning in debt and living a normal life.