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Family finds unique way to pay medical debt and avoid bankruptcy

According to GiveForward, a crowdfunding website, medical costs are the number one reason for bankruptcy in the United States. To address this epidemic, some people have turned to crowdfunding sites like GiveForward to raise money for things such as medical debt. Tennessee citizens might enjoy the following piece about one family who found a unique way to manage some of the medical bills that come with an unexpected medical condition.

The family at the heart of the story is like any other family in the U.S. When the family's young daughter was diagnosed with a brain tumor, there was no question that they would do everything and pay anything to save her. Following the diagnosis, the girl had surgery, chemotherapy and months of radiation treatment. While the doctors were able to cure the girl's cancer, it came with a big price tag and the hospital bills were still far from over.

With no clear answer to their fiscal dilemma, the family turned to fundraising through the Internet. Crowdfunding websites allow friends and families to turn to one another for help paying for major life events that they cannot pay for on their own. The websites have become increasingly popular, being used for everything from fertility treatments to paying for eyeglasses. It is estimated that crowdfunding websites raised $2.8 billion in 2012 alone.

Through crowdfunding, the family in the story was able to raise a considerable amount of money for their child's medical care. While this is certainly a heartwarming story, the truth is that it may not work for everyone. For those who cannot escape the unmanageable debt that can follow an unexpected medical condition like a brain tumor, there are other avenues for help, including bankruptcy in the appropriate situations.

USA Today, "'Crowdfunding' sites pay medical bills, raise hopes," Cheryl Alkon, Jan. 14, 2013

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Mark T. Young & Associates
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Hixson, TN 37343

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