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Benefit from the Experience of Attorneys Bill and Valerie Sherman Former Assistant Attorney General, Assistant County Attorneys and Magistrate Judge

Is My Debt from Elective Plastic Surgery Dischargeable in Bankruptcy?

Question: I'm really scared about some bankruptcy and debt stuff. I live in Smyrna, Cobb County. I know I have to file bankruptcy on some medical debt and credit card bills because it's getting out of control. I went to the hospital in Kennesaw and Cartersville to see some doctors for some procedures and now I have some big bills from that. The doctors were pretty expensive. And I went to a doctor in Sandy Springs and one in Marietta for plastic surgery and now they want to get paid. I paid some of the bill but not the whole thing. I saw the plastic surgeons in ads in a magazine and my friend had the same work done.

Can I definitely get rid of doctor bills in bankruptcy? Even if some of my charges are from elective plastic surgery? I also have dental bills from some years ago and now a lawyer for the dentist sent me a letter that he's planning to sue me. The hospital and the doctors are writing to me all the time and they call a lot. I put some of the medical bills on my Visa and MasterCard and the dental bill on my American Express card.

Answer: Yes, medical and dental debt is dischargeable in bankruptcy. Indeed, because of the escalating cost of health care (and dental services), medical expenses are one of the leading causes of personal bankruptcy filings throughout the country and here in the Atlanta area and North Georgia. We have many clients who seek to have medical bills included in their bankruptcy. Both emergency medical procedures and elective medical procedures, including plastic surgery, are dischargeable under both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. The same is true for emergency and elective dental procedures.

We at the Sherman Law Group try to answer as many questions as possible about bankruptcy and debt-related issues. If you have a question email it to us and we'll do our best to answer it. No names will be used.