My mom recently passed away -- will I be responsible for the medical bills that were not covered by Medicare?

2 answers | Last updated: Nov 23, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

"My mother, whose health had been failing for some years, passed away two weeks ago. She was phobic about doctors and would not go unless there were no alternatives, so consequently she would not participate in any form of insurance save Medicare Part A. When her condition suddenly worsened, she was transported to the ER via an ambulance. Tests were run and she was admitted. The next day she was  moved to ICU and kept there for 24 hours. When it became obvious that there was nothing that could be done for her,  we were apprised of hospice and arrangements were made to move her back home. She was released from the hospital at 4:30 PM and passed away the next morning in her own room. She had absolutely no estate (there is currently less than $100 in both her checking and savings accounts) as I have been her sole support for 20 years. She did receive a monthly Social Security allotment, which she insisted on using to help pay household bills and to purchase items for her own personal use (books, DVDs, vitamins).  After this lengthy lead-in, my question is this: Will I be held responsible for the medical bills not covered by Medicare? Thank you for your help."  — Anonymous Caring.com community member



Community Answers

Worldbeat99 answered...

I have the same question. My mother passed away 4 months ago. Most of her medical bills were covered by Blue Cross or Medicare. Am I responsible to pay off other medical bills?


Cosmogal10 answered...

My mother and father signed a "Warranty Deed Reserving Life Estate" in 2004 that basically states that upon both their deaths, their home is to be sold at fair market value and divided amonst the six siblings. My question is does this suffice in lieu of a will? Their only belongings is the house. No life insurance, etc. If anyone knows, I would certainly appreciate any suggestions.