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My father recently passed (in Florida). More than one person or institution told my mother that she was not responsible for Dad's medical bills. While this is lovely for my mother, are the hospitals (often where the elderly pass) not reimbursed, or does this only apply to the patient charges? I must say, the hospital did everything possible to find a place to discharge my father to - in his last days. It was very stressful dealing with the "discharge planning nurse", who did not tell me that a person cannot be forced to leave the hospital. Finally, when my Dad began to talk with hospice, the hospice nurse told me he could not be forced to leave the hospital. I would like to understand this process, as my Mom is in ill health and I will likely go through this with her soon.

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If he has remaining assets in his name the executor of his estate should pay from the estate any balances owed to facilities or providers.
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Reply to UsedupDIL
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Most hospitals and doctors will take insurance assignments and write off the rest. Check with the hospital senior's advisers, they helped my MIL greatly after FIL passed. I'm assuming that he had Medicare and supplemental insurance, pretty sure he met his deductible and out of pocket limits during the year. Same thing when both my grandparents passed away too, insurance was to the point of covering 100% of costs. Hopefully your parents used their cards wisely and paid them in full every month. Call credit card companies and inform them of death. You may be able to negotiate a lower pay off with them waving some of the interest and fees. Do not use these cards because it will constitute fraud unless mom is a joint owner of the card instead of an authorized user.
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Reply to Takincare
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Is your Mother the Executor or Personal Representative of your Father's Estate?  Whomever is the Executor or Personal Representative is responsible for making sure that your Father's bills and expenses are paid for from the money in his Estate. 

The Executor or Personal Representative is NOT personally responsible to pay bills out of his/her own pocket that belonged exclusively to the deceased if the deceased did not leave adequate assets to pay them.  However, this may not be the case in regards to credit card debt.  It is possible that your Mother (as a third party) might inherit your Father's medical (or non-medical) debts if she co-signed to be responsible for the debt.

If your Father and Mother had joint checking and saving accounts, the Executor or Personal Representative will need to make sure that they are using only your Father's income/money to pay for his funeral expenses, his medical bills, legal fees, etc.; and that they are not using your Mother's income (such as Social Security or Retirement Income) to pay any of your Father's bills.
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Reply to DeeAnna
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This is what I found on the internet

"Florida is not a community property state. This means that personal medical debts of your deceased spouse are not your responsibility. However, providers still have the right to collect from the estate's assets. If collections deplete the estate's assets, the surviving spouse is not responsible for the remainder.Feb 16, 2017"

Really I don't understand this but seems that Mom could owe for bills if she inherits. I would check this out.

You need to wait until you get Medicare's statements and Dads supplimental statement. If the provider takes Medicare, the statement will show what the provider billed, what Medicare considers reasonable and the 80% they paid. Then the provider bills the suppliment, the provider may or not pay the 20% or even partial. What is left is what is what is due.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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rovana Feb 3, 2019
The executor of the estate would pay out of the deceased's estate - prior to distributing any inheritance.  (I think that named beneficiaries of insurance policies, POD accounts, etc. are different issues) I don't see how mom would have to pay, unless you are thinking that dad's estate goes to mom, prior to bills being paid but bills should be paid before distribution of inheritance, so it's not really mom's funds until bills are settled.
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Hospitals must discharge a patient into a safe care environment. If the person is unable to care for themselves, then it must be another hospital/rehab or nursing home OR into the care of a family member. The hospital will often pressure a family member to accept care responsibility - do not let them talk you into this role if you are unable to provide all the needed care.
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Reply to TNtechie
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