After their baby’s premature birth in a Hawaii hospital resulted in a hospital bill almost totaling $1 million, one Saskatchewan couple is considering filing for bankruptcy.
According to a November 19 CTV News article, Darren Kimmel and Jennifer Huculak went to Hawaii for a vacation in October 13, when Huculak was six months pregnant but cleared to travel. The couple had even bought Blue Cross insurance for the trip.
Yet two days into the couple’s vacation, Huculak’s water broke — and she was forced to spend the following six weeks in a Hawaiian hospital. The baby, Reece, born nine weeks early, also spent two months in the hospital’s intensive care unit, CTV News reports.
When Kimmel and Huculak went to leave the hospital, they were charged $950,000. Blue Cross denied the couple’s claim, stating that Huculak had a pre-existing condition and a high-risk pregnancy that made her ineligible for an insurance claim — despite no doctor telling her she had a high-risk pregnancy. Blue Cross also deemed the couple’s baby ineligible for coverage.
The province of Saskatchewan is giving about $20,000 to the couple to help with the bill, but since Kimmel and Huculak are declining any private donations, they are considering turning to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney for bankruptcy help in the near future.
“At this point, we’re not really accepting anything from private people, that’s not what we’re looking for. We didn’t do this for that reason,” she told CTV Saskatoon Tuesday.
Their best option in this case is to seek help with filing bankruptcy with a Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney — as the Chapter 7 bankruptcy timeline, or the Canadian equivalent, allows an individual to void all debts in court.
“We’re probably leaning towards bankruptcy, I suppose, unless we can figure out another way,” Kimmel said.
In the meantime, baby Reece is healthy and happy, judging by photos provided to CTV.