can u go to jail for debt? i have a lot of hospital bills out there and was wondering if i can go to jail
2 Answers from Attorneys
As long as you have not committed any kind of fraud in obtaining those hospital services, inability to pay will usually not land you in jail. However, the hospital may turn those bills over to a collection agency, who can: (i) wreck your credit, (ii) obtain judgments against you in Court in the amounts owed, plus interest, (iii) garnish your wages, (iv) have your driver's license suspended, and (v) basically make your life miserable. Your best bet is not to run from the hospital, but to work out a re-payment plan with them. If that's not possible, you may consider speaking with a bankruptcy attorney about your options. Best of luck. The above does not establish an attorney-client relationship and is intended solely for informational purposes.
As to jail, generally no. However, as another attorney here mentioned, you can expect that the hospital will likely sue you, ruin your credit for seven years, attach your wages, grab your bank account, possibly take your car or home, and also just make your phone ring off the hook.
If the debt is large, see a bankruptcy attorney as that could possibly eliminate the bills. If you're in or near metro Atlanta, I'd be glad to discuss that option with you to see if it's a good one for you.