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Barrister, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  16 yrs practice, Civil, Criminal, Domestic, Realtor, Landlord 26 yrs
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Am I responsible deceased husband's hospital bill.

Customer Question

Am I responsible for my deceased husband's hospital bill. They keep billing in his name but mailing it to my address.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Barrister replied 2 years ago.
Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
Unfortunately, Wyoming has a law called the "doctrine of necessities" that makes both husband and wife liable for the "necessary expenses of the family"
This is interpreted to include any medical expenses that are incurred by either spouse.
20-1-201. Separate estate of real and personal property; not subject to control of spouse; exceptions.
All property belonging to a married person as his separate property which he owns at the time of his marriage or which during marriage he acquires in good faith from any person by descent or otherwise, together with all rents, issues, increase and profits thereof, is during marriage his sole and separate property under his sole control and may be held, owned, possessed and enjoyed by him the same as though he were single. Such property is not subject to the disposal, control or interference of his spouse and is exempt from execution or attachment for the debts of his spouse if the property was not conveyed to him by his spouse in fraud of his creditors. The necessary expenses of the family and the education of the children are chargeable upon the property of both husband and wife, or either of them, for which they may be sued jointly or separately.
With that said, if you didn't pay the debt, they would have to file suit against his estate and you personally for any medical debt and obtain a judgment against you to force you to pay those debts.
Considering the fact that it would cost them thousands of dollars to hire an attorney to sue and that you could always file bankruptcy to discharge the debt even if they did get a judgment, they may not feel it is worth the cost of doing so and may just try to get you to pay by continuing to send the bills..

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