When you enroll in an addiction treatment center, everything in your life comes to a sort of standstill. All your energies and time is spent meeting the requirements of the treatment center. And while it is good and important to have the ability to focus so intentionally on getting better and overcoming addiction, it can be stressful when you still have to cover the costs of rent and other outstanding bills.
But other people manage, don’t they? How do they do it? How can you enroll in addiction treatment and also stay on top of paying bills while in rehab?
We’re glad you asked.
Prepay your bills
If you know you’re going into rehab in the near future, you can prepay your bills. This is an especially good idea for bill amounts that are the same from month to month. Bill collectors are sure to have no problem receiving early payments as opposed to late payments.
It can be hard to do this very far in advance, since your bank account may not have sufficient funds to pay more than a few months’ worth of bills, but if you do have the ability to prepay them, consider doing so. It will give you the peace of mind knowing you took care of everything ahead of time, and that you didn’t need to ask for assistance doing so.
Set up automatic payments
If you have enough funds in your account, all you need to do to ensure your bills are paid on time is by setting up automatic payments. Nearly every bank, apartment complex and student loan company has this option, allowing you to rest assured that all your debts will be paid in a timely manner. All you have to do is make sure the withdrawal dates are correct and you’re good to go.
Consider using a credit card or personal loan
While it isn’t often advisable to willingly go into debt, there are times and places when it does prove useful. So long as you have a concrete repayment plan, taking advantage of a credit card or personal loan can help provide you with funds to pay your bills while you’re unemployed and attending treatment.
Turn to family and friends
You may be embarrassed to tell your friends and family you’re going into rehab, but they’re sure to support your desire to turn your life around by attending treatment. They may not mind lending or giving you money to cover your expenses.
Pride could, understandably, get in the way of asking for help, but you may be surprised at the outpouring of generosity. In fact, it might be the perfect chance for family members who aren’t sure how else to show support to offer you a helping hand. And it can be a helpful reminder to you that family can be a vital source of support throughout your recovery process.
Appoint a financial guardian
It may be helpful to appoint a financial guardian to take care of your debts and bills. A financial guardian is a trusted family member or friend who has access to your accounts and keeps an eye on your bills to ensure they’re paid on time while you’re gone.
There could be unexpected expenses that crop up while you’re in rehab, and your guardian will be the one to take care of them. If you like, you can draw up a legal agreement that gives that person the right to manage your accounts, which could give you both peace of mind and legal protection.
Receive short-term disability
Your employer may offer short-term disability that helps with bills and living expenses. Usually, disability does not pay your entire salary, but it can still help you get by and is certainly better than having no income. Short-term disability policies vary from company to company, so take the time to check with your employer ahead of time.
Use paid vacation time
If you use paid vacation time to go to rehab, you will be able to maintain your regular salary while getting the help you need. Treatment programs vary in length, and you may not be able to complete an inpatient treatment program using only accrued vacation time. Still, paid days off can help you get through part of your treatment before needing to tap into other methods of income.
Attend outpatient rehab
The best solution may be to attend an outpatient treatment program in order to continue to work. This ensures you are receiving your full salary while also getting the help you need. Most programs have flexible hours including evenings and weekends so you can continue working full time while also attending all treatment meetings.
Talk to someone about rehab today
Whether or not you have a plan to pay your bills in rehab, our team of professional counselors and therapists are here to help. If you’ve already been accepted into treatment or are just beginning the process of gathering information, take the time to reach Rehab After Work to find answers to all your questions, after scheduling your appointment.
Call anytime at 610-644-6464. We look forward to hearing from you.