can my property be taken if I cant pay a medical bill . I own it free and clear.I am only on disability and have little income.I live in New Mexico
1 Answer from Attorneys
Your creditor can take your property to pay for an unpaid medical bill if they file a lawsuit against you. Your creditor must serve you with a Civil Complaint. If you don't respond to the Civil Complaint, or if the Creditor wins a Judgment during the lawsuit, the creditor can try to garnish your wages.
If you are a low income person, it's possible that you make too little money, and that your income is exempt from garnishment. (The creditor can't leave you with less than the income from a 40 hour a week minimum wage income). Certain forms of disability benefits are exempt from garnishment in New Mexico, and your disability benefits may qualify.
You can also file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy to discharge the debts and protect your disability benefit from garnishment. If you believe that you were served with a Civil Complaint or that there is a civil suit pending against you, please immediately contact an attorney. If you can't afford an attorney, contact Legal Aid or similar organizations to get free or low-cost assistance.