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Debt, Pay up or do nothing?

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posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:09 PM
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I come to you guys here at ATS because there are a lot of very insightful and intelligent people here and this is something that I do not want people in my real life to know about. My current situation is extremely embarrassing to me and so here I am, asking the only anonymous friends I have.

So I have a considerable amount of debt, mostly from a failed business and an ugly divorce that left me with debt that I should not have been responsible for. Also medical debt as well as school debt. All together but not including school debt it's around $10,000. I've heard that that isn't considered a lot when it comes to debt. School debt is around $8,000.

My father has told me to ignore it as I do not have any property to take or a wage to garnish. Basically I am a very poor person with nothing. I am actually very embarrassed to say that. I make a little cash from babysitting, and get child support (which is not enough for the two kids). I don't want to go into private details, but I basically cannot work at this time due to a life threatening health issues that I was recently diagnosed with. I am in a relationship but he has his own financial issues and does what he can to keep the home going but cannot provide me any money for personal use. Basically he is also poor and struggling and even together we can hardly make it.

With that said, what can I do? Legal Aid will not help me because I am not in danger of loosing my job or property. Bankruptcy Attorneys will not work with me on payment plans. They want a huge chunk of cash up front and I just can't swing it. I am now getting those nasty letters and court summons, but I am scared to death! I have three kids and I can't even afford to have someone watch them when I need to go to this court date! I have nothing to give, nothing to spare. The last time I had to appear in court I was so intimidated I couldn't control my emotions and was crying so hard I couldn't even speak.
What happens if I ignore it? There are no real answers that I can find. Some old debt collectors haven't contacted me in years and a few others are non stop. Sometimes I know they just charge off or whatever, but what really can I do with this ones that keep harassing me? Anything? I keep thinking the economy is going to collapse anyway and my pitiful debt will mean nothing, but I just can't go on thinking and hoping that will happen. It's dumb I know.

Basically I just need to know what I should do at this point.
edit on 29-5-2012 by lilowl53 because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-5-2012 by lilowl53 because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:18 PM
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If you ignore it they can take everything away and put dings on your credit scores and other related things that will hurt you for the rest of your life. Such as the creditor could get a judgment against you and garnish up to 25% of your wages if you don't pay.

Another thing you can do is search the internet to find help for your situation.



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:18 PM
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Hello.I am not from the United States and I am also not very smart really
Im sorry to hear you are having a hard time.

Is declaring for bankruptcy an option at all? To get rid of the debt?

Edit- I know its not a huge number but I know a guy that filed for bankruptcy in Australia and he only owed about 20 grand.
edit on 29-5-2012 by Germanicus because: (no reason given)


Edit- School debt cant be erased can it? Im sure you could find someone to help you with that beyond legal aid if you look. Sounds like Tinkerhaus knows what he is talking about though.

I would add him as a friend if I was you,he seems like a nice guy. Im sure he would help you out if you need it in the future as you work your way through whatever you decide on.

Sorry I wasnt much help.
edit on 29-5-2012 by Germanicus because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:20 PM
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reply to post by lilowl53
 


Next time they call just put them on hold..



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:20 PM
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Medical bills can be lowered by huge amounts or even removed. Do some research in your state for available programs.

Other financial debt can be negotiated to the point you pay pennies on the dollar and they not only mark the debt as paid, but will stop reporting it altogether and it will disappear from your report.

I had a 521 credit score and within a year brought it to 780. I lost a job a few years back and was a passenger in an auto accident with an uninsured motorist. Took me a few weeks of research and lots of letters back and forth with my debtors, but my credit report is squeaky-freakin-clean now.

This is a great place to start researching.

You need to familiarize yourself with the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

Once you arm yourself with some knowledge about your rights and what your creditors are legally able to do, you can start to fight your debt in earnest. Know your rights, and know what you can collect if your rights are violated. Find out if it's legal to record phone conversations without notifying the other party in your state, having a little ammo against your debtors can be a great negotiating tool.

No one can give you a quick answer, if you are serious about deleting your debts you need to research, research, research. You don't need to pay the total amounts your credit report shows you owe..

I hope this helps. Ignoring it means it will drop off your credit report in 7 years, but you are not immune from legal action after that 7 years. Taking care of your obligations is the best way to handle the situation.

Good luck!



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:22 PM
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After doing a quick search here is an example of what I came up with:

www.hestonciment.com...




Retaining an attorney from our firm to represent you is a far better decision, as we defend families and individuals across the country and have been successful in helping over 75% of our clients win their lawsuits so that they paid nothing on the debt. Even if debt lawsuit defense is not a viable solution for you, we can still seek to negotiate a debt settlement so that you pay only a fraction of what you owe.



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:22 PM
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double post, sorry
edit on 29-5-2012 by EvilSadamClone because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:22 PM
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I am so sorry you are going through this!
Quick story of what happened to me once a long time ago when I was much younger. I ignored a court summons and because I was not there it was an automatic guilty judgement against me, and the other party was able to ask for anything.....My mistake! I had to file bankruptcy over it......

You can go, and plead that you have nothing and what can they do? Tell them you can pay $1 a month?? They may accept anything.

I would love to hear advice from others on this one! Good luck to you!!!!!!!



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:22 PM
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OP - Don't listen to opinion. I've given you resources to find the material and the penalties for yourself. As you stated, if you have no real wages and no real assets, they will not take you to court. It's not worth suing someone who cannot pay you.

Bankruptcy is on your record for 7 years as well. I guarantee you can clean up your credit in much less time and come out not only debt free but having a great credit score as well. People are lazy and go to credit repair services - I assure you that if you are capable of reading and absorbing the material, and have the drive to actually write letters and communicate with your debtors, you can do this all on your own.

ETA: I forgot to mention that you can also get a creditor to delete the debt based on your rights in the FCRA. If these companies cannot validate the debt, which means prove by supplying all the contractual information that you agreed to the debt, they MUST delete the record. Search terms for this method would be "debt verification" and "debt validation."

Don't pay some shmuck to do what you can do yourself - this also makes you a stronger consumer because it forces you to learn the ins and outs of the credit and debt system. Stick it to the man!
edit on 29-5-2012 by TinkerHaus because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:23 PM
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reply to post by EvilSadamClone
 


I do not own any property and do not have a job for them to take wages from. Since I don't have a job they also have no tax returns to take. My credit score is already screwed. I have already looked for help and was denied because I didn't meet the qualifications for my state which were; I have to be in danger of loosing my home or losing my job.

Maybe I should mention that all of this debt is about 8 years old.



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:25 PM
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reply to post by lilowl53
 


If you have a bank account they can garner money from that, or even a savings account.



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:28 PM
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reply to post by Germanicus
 


I have already tired to file bankruptcy but I can not afford to pay the attorney and filing fees. They ask for large sums upfront, and I have $0.00 to start with.



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:29 PM
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reply to post by EvilSadamClone
 


I don't have any bank accounts either



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:35 PM
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It might be wise to go back to school if possible. Sign up with a community college that offers entirely on-line courses - as cheap as possbile. 100 dollars a credit type school. Earn an associates in something unrelated to the current degree. Apply for every grant you can, as an adult single parent. Borrow the maximum you can from student loans over this time period to pay off as much of that 10k as possible & consolidate your current debts under a lower rate. If you are frugal and do not tap into student loans for anything except relief on other debts - it could work. You can get a delay on the current student debt that you pay while in full-time school. After 3 years of being minimum fulltime student (12 credits or so) you will be about 7,000 deeper in debt (with the interest) - but with an alternate degree to fall back on. This also gives you 3 years to get healthy, and delay the current problem. Worst case scenerio is that you are back to where you started - on verge of default with slightly more debt. This plan was basically my way back from poverty and bad credit & it worked out. It is also always possible the government creates a loophole you can fall into within that time frame as well. Good luck!



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 01:42 PM
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Originally posted by lilowl53
reply to post by Germanicus
 


I have already tired to file bankruptcy but I can not afford to pay the attorney and filing fees. They ask for large sums upfront, and I have $0.00 to start with.


Yeah. I think Tinkerhaus is on the right track.

Sorry I couldnt help. I really hope it all works out hey.

Edit- and please do not feel ashamed or embarrased. These things happen. You have no need to feel ashamed.
edit on 29-5-2012 by Germanicus because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 02:03 PM
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Originally posted by TinkerHaus
OP - Don't listen to opinion. I've given you resources to find the material and the penalties for yourself. As you stated, if you have no real wages and no real assets, they will not take you to court. It's not worth suing someone who cannot pay you.

Bankruptcy is on your record for 7 years as well. I guarantee you can clean up your credit in much less time and come out not only debt free but having a great credit score as well. People are lazy and go to credit repair services - I assure you that if you are capable of reading and absorbing the material, and have the drive to actually write letters and communicate with your debtors, you can do this all on your own.

ETA: I forgot to mention that you can also get a creditor to delete the debt based on your rights in the FCRA. If these companies cannot validate the debt, which means prove by supplying all the contractual information that you agreed to the debt, they MUST delete the record. Search terms for this method would be "debt verification" and "debt validation."

Don't pay some shmuck to do what you can do yourself - this also makes you a stronger consumer because it forces you to learn the ins and outs of the credit and debt system. Stick it to the man!
edit on 29-5-2012 by TinkerHaus because: (no reason given)


I will looking to that FCRA, thank you!



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 02:05 PM
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reply to post by IsleptIdreamt
 


Thanks, I will look into this as well!



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 02:56 PM
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reply to post by Neopan100
 


Ha! That's great! My voice mail right now is from Monty Python. "I'm Busy".



posted on May, 29 2012 @ 08:50 PM
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reply to post by lilowl53
 


Personally, I would become a financial terrorist, it's not just a job, it's an adventure. Let me splian dis to you Lucy.

Debt collectors are only human and they have limits. They have to deal with people all day telling them no and swearing at them, so they have a breaking point. Most countries have laws that allow a debt collector to call a certain number of times per week, they can't be abusive, they can't say they are a lawyer if they are not, if they are a third party collector they can't say they are the party you originally had the debt with. NEVER admit you owe any debt, NEVER.

The courts have remedies for abusive collection agencies and their personnel.

Get a tape recorder, push their buttons "nicely" and then organize a small claims court hearing. Have them charged with all the laws they have broken and help the courts organize their fines for them by providing your evidence. Always offer to settle out of court with the collection agency first, eg. they can pay you some amount for your trouble, that stings them like a bee.

I know of a few instances like this where the fines actually amounted to in excess of $50,000, the collection agency was pissed off something serious. But, the moral of the story is they never called those people again.

Forewarned and forearmed with the legal information can really turn the tables in these situations. Now I don't know what you phone conversation recording laws are like, you may have to inform the other party. In Canada only one participant in a conversation needs to know it's being taped, and that would be the person taping that is party to the conversation. After two years in Canada if you do not admit to the debt and judgment has been placed, the creditor can no longer harass or approach you legally.

Get all the information and do whatever you can legally do to make their lives a living Hell.

Cheers - Dave
edit on 5/29.2012 by bobs_uruncle because: (no reason given)



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