Originally Posted by novaman
When I'm wrong I'm wrong. I just looked it up. Based on a 2005 Harvard study, it looks like 50% of bunkruptcies in US are due to illness/catastrophic medical bills.
There are some problems with the Harvard study. Nevertheless, a good portion of bankruptcies are due medical bills, at least in part. Other factors based on my observation, I am not going to dig for stats:
--Divorce. People manage to keep things barely together when married, but it all falls apart when divorce hits the picture. Two households are more expensive than one.
--Job loss. People get fired or laid off and can't pay their bills.
--Medical issues. Uninsured medical bills and/or illness which disrupts the ability to work.
--Business gone bad. And the debtor guaranteed the businesses debts.
-- No good sense. Too many credit cards, too many gifts, cosigning kids loans, too many toys with payments.
Often it doesn't take much of a big bill for people's financial lives to fall apart. It is not unusual for people to file bankruptcy owing only $10-20,000. They file because their wages are garnished.