June 4, 2024

Connecticut Residents Protected from Credit Impacts of Medical Debt

Vice President Kamala Harris announced in Philadelphia that the Biden administration is taking the first steps toward removing medical bills from people’s credit scores. Earlier this year, Democrats in the state legislature led passage of legislation that will do exactly that here in Connecticut.

Beginning July 1, Connecticut health care providers and hospitals will be prohibited from reporting medical debt to credit rating agencies for use in a credit report and any medical debt that has been reported to credit rating agencies will be voided.

Nearly 1 in 5 Americans report having medical debt, often presenting significant barriers to buying or renting a home, qualifying for lower interest loans for a new car or their child’s college tuition, employment and more.

“Medical debt is a symptom of an utterly broken health care system. By including medical debt in credit reports, we allow creditors to make decisions with immense impact, based on one of the worst moments of someone’s life that is not reflective of their financial responsibility or habits,” said Senate President Martin Looney. “While I am hopeful that reform is imminent, I am proud of the work of the Senate Democrats to protect low income working people from this predatory system.”

“Medical debt is not the result of poor financial decisions or consumer spending – it is the result of a health care system that prioritizes profits over people,” said State Senator Matt Lesser, Chair of the Human Services Committee. “Medical debt is typically a one time incurrence due to necessity, and no family faced with those circumstances should face further financial pressure while seeking to rent an apartment or buy a car. Massive healthcare reform is needed, but I am proud that we have taken a step to insulate Connecticut residents from financial ruin for circumstances outside of their control. I am grateful to the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for its thoughtful engagement with this important state legislation. Their support of this Connecticut legislation is a great example of the Biden Administration supporting commonsense pro-consumer reforms, putting regular people ahead of special interests.”

The legislation passed with the support of President Biden’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Connecticut Hospital Association and a wide array of consumer advocates.

Posted by Garnet McLaughlin