Lamar Odom has experienced what some describe as a miracle recovery since he was found unconscious in a brothel following a drug overdose. After estranged wife Khloé Kardashian rushed to his side, she has made sure he’s had the best of medical care to help him survive what some thought was a life-or-death situation. But, as the improvement slowed down, the medical bills continued to climb to provide Lamar with the therapy he needs.
Now, as the Inquisitr reported, Odom is ready to leave the hospital to move to a long-term rehab facility for more treatment. He continues to struggle with basic skills such as walking and talking, leaving those around him searching for a high-quality, secure location to which to move the former NBA player.
Although Lamar won’t be able to go to a home for the holidays (Kardashian has firmly refused to turn her mansion into a place where Odom can get home health care), the family thinks that he will be able to leave the hospital by Christmas. It’s a source of hope and happiness for all involved that Odom will visit with his children for the holiday, reports E! News.
“The family is continuing to be optimistic about having him into a rehab center before Christmas,” an insider revealed to E!. “Either way his kids are flying out to be with him, whether it’s at Cedars or the new center in Calabasas that he will be relocated to.”
If Calabasas sounds familiar, there’s a reason. That’s where Khloé and the Kardashian family dwell. Lamar entered Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on October 19 following an airlift from Las Vegas. He continues to have problems walking by himself, alternating a walker with a wheelchair. When Odom was still in the Las Vegas hospital, his children 13-year-old Lamar Jr. and 17-year-old Destiny visited him, which may help prepare them for the dramatically changed father they’ll see at Christmas.
As the concern for Odom‘s full recovery continues, the question of who will pay the millions of dollars worth of medical bills that continue to mount has arisen, according to Entertainment Tonight.
At 36, Lamar is looking at a bill estimated to be “in the millions,” with healthcare costs expert Shana Alex Charles, Assistant Professor at the Department of Health Science at California State University, Fullerton, explaining to ET how the bill could climb so quickly.
“Just your basic hospital stay usually runs about $10,000 a night,” she clarified. “Cedars-Sinai is not basic care, and [Odom’s] kind of incident is not basic, so you can just assume that it’s going to be much higher than that, maybe even as high as $30,000 to $50,000 per night, which adds up very quickly.”
Moreover, once Lamar is moved to a rehab facility, the bills will continue to accumulate, according to the health care costs specialist.
“If you add in not just the medical care, but also some kind of long-term nursing home care, for example, for middle-class folks, that’s usually about $9,000 per month. You would assume that somebody like Mr. Odom might get something much nicer, so that would be tens of thousands per month. Once that care is provided after being released from Cedars-Sinai… if they’re talking about a time frame of a year and a half to two years, and trying to manage his new level of abilities, [the bill] certainly could run in the millions.”
With Odom still having memory problems and difficulty speaking as well as walking, who will take responsibility for paying those medical bills if not his legal wife, Khloé?
Ryan Stearns, a certified family law specialist from the Stearns Kim & Stearns law firm in Torrance, California, explained the legal angle.
Has Lamar Odom Medical Nightmare Resulted From “whoring’ around”?
“Since [Khloé and Lamar are] still married and these bills relating to his treatment are [considered] debt, they are going to be presumed as a family obligation,” Stearns pointed out to ET. “However, there are some [legal] exceptions … which provide that debts incurred while married, but for non-necessaries of life, should be the separate responsibility of the spouse that incurs the debt.”
Moreover, said the legal specialist, if he were to serve as the representative for Kardashian, an argument could be made that she should not take responsibility.
“If I were representing Khloe, and [knew that] later she was going to divorce Lamar, I would argue that he’s going through this treatment as a consequence of his ‘whoring’ around,'” Stearns stated. “Namely, that he developed these conditions as a result of nothing to do with their marriage, entirely separate. Then it would be up to the court to determine whether the debts are going to be his separate responsibility.”
But as far as creditors are concerned, Stearns revealed that they will evaluate it in a different way.
“Since they’re married, they’re going to look at it as what’s called a joint and several obligation of both Khloe and Lamar. They’re both equally responsible,” he added.
[Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images For AXE]