Am I responsible for the medical bills of my deceased husband?
My husband died 11/09; he had no estate.
You are not personally liable for your deceased husband's medical bills. In general, family members do not inherit debt. There are, however, 3 exceptions. The first is if you live in a community property state; you may still bear responsibility for medical bills. The second exception falls under something called the "doctrine of necessaries", wherein a spouse is liable for the necessary medical expenses incurred by the other spouse. The last exception would be if you signed or in some other way agreed to be bound for re-payments. However, under MS law the first 2 exceptions do not apply. As to the last exception, only if you agreed to this debt can you be held obligated to re-pay it (since you didn't indicate this to be the case I assume that you did not agree). However, this does not mean the his creditors have no recourse.
When a person dies with a Will, it controls the financial affairs of the decedent's assets, which is called the "estate." A Will distributes assets, not debts. However, before any assets can be distributed to the heirs, all known debts must be paid by the executor. Therefore, the executor will sell assets in the estate to pay for any debts that remain. Only after the debts are paid will the remaining assets be distributed among the beneficiaries of the Will.
If a person dies without a Will, this is known as "dying intestate". In this situation, the court appoints an administrator to handle the distribution of the decedent's assets according to the laws of the state. As with dying with a Will, assets are distributed after debts are paid.
If there is no estate, then the debt extinguishes as a matter of law since there are no assets which could be sold or attached to pay creditors.