As we’ve discussed here before, medical debt is one of the leading causes of bankruptcy. Even a medical bill of $2,000 after an insurer has paid its share of your bill can be an unexpected expense that many Americans simply can’t handle.

Now some hospitals are seeking to work with patients to help them pay their bills and to get the money that is owed to them for their services. They’re cutting out the middle man of collection agencies that cost them money and can ruin the credit rating of patients by offering interest-free loans with no fees or surcharges to patients.

While that sounds like a great deal, financial experts recommend that people look at all of their options before signing on to one of these loans. Many of them recommend first taking steps to negotiate the amount of the bill to see if you can get the amount lowered to what your insurance will cover.

It’s also essential, they note, to read the fine print before signing onto any type of loan. Find out what kind of penalties are involved if you’re unable to make your scheduled payments, and determine what kind of damage may be done to your credit score if you don’t make your loan payments on time.

If you have medical bills that are overwhelming and are threatening your and your family’s financial security, it may be wise to seek advice from an experienced New Jersey bankruptcy attorney to determine how best to deal with your debt before you take out one of these loans or take other steps to deal with your medical debt.

Source: NBC News, “Some Hospitals Will Now Offer You an Interest-Free Loan,” Jo Ling Kent and Michael Cappetta, May 25, 2017