Many senior citizens file bankruptcy after accumulating so much medical debt that it was ruining them financially. But how can a senior citizen prevent future medical debt from ruining the financial fresh start given by bankruptcy?
Let's take a look at a few tips:
- Senior citizens should purchase and maintain a health insurance policy after bankruptcy. If you qualify for Medicaid, find out how to apply and then take advantage of that assistance.
- Make sure that you maintain long-term care coverage after bankruptcy. Many senior citizens and young people mistakenly believe that they won't ever need long-term care; but the reality is that 60 percent of those who reach age 65 will eventually need long-term care coverage sometime in their retirement. If you fail to maintain this type of coverage you could face a second bankruptcy due to medical costs associated with long-term care.
- If you purchase long-term care coverage after bankruptcy, make sure that you get coverage that will cover at least 3 years of care. The average long-term care stay for a senior citizen is 28 months. If you want to cut costs a bit you can include a 90 day wait period.
- After exiting bankruptcy take an honest look at your lifestyle and ask yourself if you would be better served by scaling back. After bankruptcy, moving into a smaller home or even an assisted living facility could save you money and in the long-term eliminate some debt obligations.
- If your income was reduced significantly after bankruptcy, don't feel shy about applying for public assistance. Food stamps, Section-8 and other financial assistance programs can free up money that would be better used paying for insurance or other expenses.