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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:37 PM
Original message
What happens if you can't pay your car payment and credit cards?
What will happen if you don't pay your car payment and you can no longer afford to pay your credit card debt? What is the worse that can happen? Jail?

Can someone please give me some advice? Last month I found out that my girlfriend is running a $900 per month deficit. She cannot afford her car payment, insurance, and gas.

We are living together now, and we might not be able to afford our rent. I can chip in, but I don't have an extra $900 per month. I don't know what to do.

Please, if anyone has any advice or suggestions, please reply.

Thanks in advance.
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newmajority Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:39 PM
Response to Original message
1. You start singing silly songs in commercials
Edited on Fri Jul-25-08 08:40 PM by newmajority
And eventually find work at a seafood restaurant where they dress like pirates.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geXLXH7m9Fk
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:42 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. We are hurting
:(
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newmajority Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #3
9. Sorry.... As Bill Clinton says, I feel your pain
Just trying to find some humor in it. Not exactly in a good financial situation myself. :(
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:21 PM
Response to Reply #9
125. I am very optimistic
I recently recovered from untreated Rheumatoid Arthritis. I thought I was gonna die, but, with treatment, I have made a near full recovery. It has changed my outlook on life and has given me hope.

I hope things turn around for you soon and that you are rolling in riches. Peace and low stress, and God Bless.
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billyoc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:41 PM
Response to Original message
2. Of course you're not going to jail.
Or anywhere else that's not within walking distance, because they'll repossess your car.
The Credit Card company will hound and hound you, then sell the debt to a collection agency which will hound you even more.

But no, no jail time. We'd be building skyscraper prisons if that were the case.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #2
10. How will we be hounded
we don't have a phone. Will there be court involved? The thing is, we don't have any money. If it is only a "credit score" issue, I can handle that.

Thank you for your reply.
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:45 PM
Response to Reply #10
14. do you have a job?
does she?
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:23 PM
Response to Reply #14
126. I have two jobs
She has two jobs as well, but recently became disabled, and can no longer work.
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MiniMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 10:03 PM
Response to Reply #126
142. The credit card company can get a judgement against you and a judge
will determine how much of your paycheck can be deducted and paid to the company. Your employer is required to do the deduction. That is after taxes of course.
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newmajority Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:48 PM
Response to Reply #10
22. It's technically possible that the credit card companies could go to court
But that's probably rare. It will make life a little harder for about 7 years though, until it drops off the record. Other than that, losing the car will be the worst of it.

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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:58 PM
Response to Reply #22
33. It's more than technically possible... I was sued for
a bounced check and a credit card balance of 3 grand. They don't f* around. This is the event that triggered my decision to file for bankruptcy.
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Pakhet Donating Member (308 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:37 AM
Response to Reply #33
66. It's not rare
Edited on Sat Jul-26-08 12:38 AM by Pahket
we've received 7 summons between the two of us in the last 6 months on credit cards we couldn't pay anymore. once they have a judgement against you, they garnish your wages (if your state allows it...arizona does, texas doesn't)

on edit: sorry, meant to respond to the post above yours :)
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Cronus Protagonist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 03:21 AM
Response to Reply #33
151. Oh they sue, they win a judgement but still, if you have no money... so what????
Hahaha... I laugh in their faces.

I've been sued, they won a judgement. They can seize my bank account any time they want - that will net them anywhere from 0 - 100 bucks, and if they do that once, I'll change banks so they have no way to try it again. Meanwhile, they're out their money, and while I have little sympathy for them, I will pay it back, but I have to make money in order to do that.

It seems to me that the lenders who harrass their borrowers don't seem to realize that the reason you ain't paying isn't because you want to keep all your huge piles of dough to yourself, but it's because you DON'T HAVE ANY DOUGH!! sheesh! An anencephalic could figure that out!

And a court judgement won't put any money in MY pocket, so how the fuck is it going to get into THEIRS? hahaha Instead of suing, they should have a recruiter contact me with high paying jobs! That would be the way to get paid!

Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose.

:P
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billyoc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #10
28. Oh, no phone, that's great. Just a few letters, I suppose.
I'm in the same boat. :hi:
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Dr.Phool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #10
138. Don't get a phone either.
Unless it's an anonymous, pre-paid cell phone. And don't give the number to anyone associated with a bill.

The car will be repo'd. Credit cards are a lot iffier with the new bankruptcy laws.
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elocs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:42 PM
Response to Original message
4. You can be thankful she is just your girlfriend. Sad, but true. n/t
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #4
13. I am starting to hear that
sadly.

But I am in love. This is now my problem. :mad:
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:47 PM
Response to Reply #13
19. How long have you been dating?
And are you considering marriage?

And how long has she been in debt?
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:25 PM
Response to Reply #19
127. We have been together two years
at this time I am not considering marriage, although we have talked about it.

She is current with all her credit cards and car loan. She recently got sick and is unable to work.
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Maine-ah Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #127
141. call the company that holds the car loan.
Mine does what they call a "hardship" one time skip a payment on the loan, the period of time they let me skip was two months. If you contact them before you fall behind you may be in better chances of getting them to help you. And if you don't really need the car, like work is close by and you can walk, then sell it. Though that may not be an option at this point because of both of your medical problems. But, still talking to any of the companies BEFORE you fall behind will get you better chance of getting any help from them.
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elocs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:49 PM
Response to Reply #13
23. Argument and disagreements about money is supposed to be a major cause of divorces.
It's going to be a less sticky matter to sort this out now than if you were married.
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:42 PM
Response to Original message
5. Look into Credit Counseling...
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Atman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #5
27. Credit counseling is almost always a rip-off
Pay $1500 that you don't have to be told by a bunch of people (who now have your $1500) that you shouldn't be spending $1500 on stuff you don't need.

There is NOTHING in a "credit counseling" course that cannot be found with five minutes on the google.

.
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:05 PM
Response to Reply #27
37. point of fact, my attorney specifically told me NOT to work with credit counseling.
First, many of them are just fronts for the credit industry, second, once you're in, your credit is going to take a hit that will leave you in a situation much like that which one ends up in after a bankruptcy...but your still are chained to the debt. If one has debt like I had after the divorce, there's no way in hell to get out of it. We're talking the better part of one's life chained to debt repayment plans that would make the mafia blush.

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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:09 PM
Response to Reply #37
40. According to this, credit counseling is now required by law before bankruptcy.....

In 2005, the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 made credit counseling a requirement for consumer debtors filing for Bankruptcy in the United States. In order to meet this requirement, during the 180-day period preceding the filing of bankruptcy, the debtor must complete a program with an approved nonprofit budget and credit counseling agency. Such a program may include, but is not limited to, one counseling session conducted by phone or over the internet. In addition, a post-filing debtor education credit counseling session is required in order to complete the bankruptcy process and to have your debts discharged.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Credit_counseling
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:15 PM
Response to Reply #40
43. Wow - I filed almost ten years ago, before the Predatory Lender Protection act...errr..
the changes to the bankruptcy laws.
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:19 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. Sounds to me the question is now not IF you do CC, but WHICH CC is best...
and from what I'm reading, "non-profit" doesn't mean free or even ethical.

Sounds like mdmc has a lot of research to do.

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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:29 PM
Response to Reply #44
47. Put in mdmc's position, I would consult a lawyer. The battlefield
is too dangerous to traverse without legal representation. Many provide free initial consultations.
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:32 PM
Response to Reply #47
50. I would do the same. But then again, I know a good, honest attorney...
Finding a good, honest attorney is a non-trivial task.
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:33 AM
Response to Reply #47
82. Argh. Pay for a lawyer, how, exactly?
Although, to be fair, many offer free consultations.

Here's one tip I gleaned from the intertubes: get a secured loan and pay it off in installments. Set the loan money aside, and don't touch it, but to pay off the loan.

Get a membership at a credit union and direct deposit your paychecks if possible; they'll be happy to take payments on a small loan (OR a big one, as I recently and unhappily discovered) out of your check before the money is deposited. You won't miss it if you budget properly. You might be unentertained and have slllooowww internet access, but it's definitely worth the price.

Another partial solution is to get and use a credit card strictly for the purposes of rebuilding credit. Buy a stick of gum, some toilet paper, and a couple of pizzas on the card each month, and pay it off every month. That'll help a bit too.

Lawyers are very expensive, if you want a competent one. This I know, from very recent experience. Recent events wiped out all the debt gains I've made over the past six years; thankfully, I have a decent-paying job, and can afford the loan payments, but not everyone- shit, few- are in my position.

FWIW, the OP has my sympathy and my empathy. I know exactly how this feels..... and I wish I could be of more help. :(
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #82
93. Individual bankruptcies are relatively clear cut and many lawyers have
set fees around the process, so you know what you're getting into up front.

Here's how it worked for me (circumstances are different for different people based on their assets, holdings, etc. - for me, I owned nothing of real value (my ex-wife got the house - I was living in an appartment with 1 table, a mattress on the floor, paper plates and plastic utensils - nearly destitute-literally all of my income was going to keepthe credit pitbulls from my door and even that wasn't enough. Every month saw a growing deficit getting larger exponentially - my exwife stopped paying her part of the bills as agreed to in the divorce decree and so all the creditors came after me)).

Anyway - I had to put down a percentage of the fee up front and my lawyer filed the paperwork. Once the paperwork has been filed all creditor action ceases - no more calls, no more lawsuites, no more garnishing. I was able to stop paying them and had money in my pockets again (omg - I willnever forget how liberating that was). With this, I was able to pay off the attorney easily. I had to voluntarily repo the motorcycle, and my wife's car got repoed, too (although one might choose to reaffirm certain debts), but beyond that, it was relatively painless - and a hell of a lot better the alternative.

But again, it all depends on the cirumstances of the individual, the chapter under which one files, and many other factors.


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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:28 PM
Response to Reply #82
129. thanks for the reply
:hug:
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jayfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 11:49 PM
Response to Reply #40
64. It's A Sham.
The counseling amounts to a self-created budget and a phone quiz.

Jay
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Hassin Bin Sober Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:44 AM
Response to Reply #40
69. The credit counseling required for BK is not the same as ...
.....credit counseling for debt repayment plans. The required counseling is a joke and takes 20 minutes to complete on-line.
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RebelOne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 07:57 AM
Response to Reply #40
189. All you do is go online and take a 2-hour course
and then answer some questions and pay $50. I know, because I filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy last year. You will be sent a certificate of completion that you have to show the judge when you go to your bankruptcy hearing.
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:44 AM
Response to Reply #27
71. My nephew and his wife went to credit counseling and it was
free. They helped a lot.
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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #27
94. That's not true. For profit credit counseling is a rip off.
but the non profit credit counseling most assuredly isn't.
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El Pinko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:34 AM
Response to Reply #94
154. Even the "non-profit" ones are generally run by the CC companies
Their number one goal is to keep people in the credit system - IE keep them making payments.

The worst thing for them would be for millions of Americans to just walk away from their debts and live on a cash basis.
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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:27 PM
Response to Reply #154
167. Again, not true.
Non profits are just that, non profits. And, they have to specify the same.
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Atman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:49 PM
Response to Reply #167
170. Being "non-profit" doesn't mean people aren't making money.
Edited on Sun Jul-27-08 02:50 PM by Atman
It just means that the non-profit entity is not making moeny. They cannot show a profit when the books are done. But they can pay nice salaries, they can sell programs, they can do everything a "for profit" company can...except make money. The term non-profit is too often used interchangeably with terms denoting angelic behavior or altruism. Sure many non-profits are genuinely "good," but just being a non-profit doesn't make one so.

.
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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 05:14 PM
Response to Reply #170
172. The not for profit credit counseling companies are not scams.
They are designed to help people get their lives back on track by negotiating a lower repayment term and interest rate with the credit card companies.

They typically ask for a nominal fee; $50 or so.

Any company that is asking for hundreds or thousands is a scam.
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Atman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 05:56 PM
Response to Reply #172
174. Many of these companies require you to sign up for an expensive "program."
Edited on Sun Jul-27-08 06:31 PM by Atman
They require you to attend "classes," which you're required to pay for. Only after you complete their "class," which they're making money from (not "profit," of course -- *koff koff*) will they do anything in regard to helping with your debt. I think it's naive to assume that just because an org is "not for profit" that they're somehow on the up and up. If you're only paying a nominal fee -- $50 is certainly pretty nominal -- you're probably working with a legit company. But if you're required to take an expensive "class," run like hell.

ON EDIT: BTW, just to be clear -- a "Not for Profit" and a "Non Profit" are NOT the same things.

.
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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 12:02 AM
Response to Reply #174
185. LOL. I work in the non profit sector. I know what I am talking about.
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Atman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:27 AM
Response to Reply #185
192. LOL. So what?
Really...you "work in the non-profit sector." What does that mean, and how/why does it negate any statement I made? I have not only worked in "the non-profit sector," I've actually headed a "not for profit" organization. Unless you actually ran a non-profit CREDIT COUNSELING agency, I fail to see what you're Ling OL about.

.
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El Pinko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 11:30 AM
Response to Reply #167
194. WRONG.
Edited on Mon Jul-28-08 11:31 AM by El Pinko
The fact that they are supported by the CC industry has nothing to do with their non-profit status. Of course they are non-profit. The CC industry funds them and writes them off as "charity".

Sure, they may not charge any fee, but their advice is inevitably the same - they will tell people on paltry incomes to make impossible budget plans that don't even allow for basic staples so that they can make big whopping payments to the CC companies to get the debts paid off sooner. They also "negotiate" lower interest rates, etc. with the companies. They will do anything under the sun to keep people from going to bankruptcy or simply walking away (much wiser choices for low-income people without significant assets, faced with CC debts that would pay 40 years to pay off).

They don't make a profit, but they have a philosophical conflict of interest because they are directly funded by CC companies.



http://www.bizjournals.com/eastbay/stories/2005/05/16/s...

Law puts credit counselors in spotlight
East Bay Business Times - by Xenia P. Kobylarz


Christmas may arrive early in the credit counseling industry. The freshly signed federal bankruptcy bill, scheduled to take effect in October, is expected to boost business in the already fast-growing sector of credit counselors and debt management firms.

Signed by the president in April, the sweeping bankruptcy legislation requires anyone filing personal bankruptcy to first consult a credit counselor. It also requires individuals to take a financial-management course before receiving a discharge from bankruptcy court.

...

Historically, credit counseling agencies were mostly nonprofits funded by credit card companies and banks to help consumers handle their debts. The NFCC, for instance, is partly funded by creditors as well as charitable organizations such as the United Way Foundation.



Sure they are better than the fee-based scam outfits, but it is their job to keep poor and working people enslaved to the plastic forever.
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Maureen1322 Donating Member (392 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #27
188. We went to a county agency, there was no charge.
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jayfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:55 PM
Response to Reply #5
30. Don't Do It.
If your going to go the CC route you may as well file Ch.13. It looks the same on your credit report.

Jay
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:03 PM
Response to Reply #5
36. As I said, look into it...that is, examine your alternatives...
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:42 PM
Response to Original message
6. jail?
There are no debtors prisons anymore. Her car could be repossessed. Her cc company could garnish her paycheck if they took her to court and got a settlement. But jail? No.

There are protections for debtors, even stupid ones living above their income.

Insurance? That's something else. I assume you mean car insurance? In some states, if you get pulled over they'll tow the car. And ticket the driver.


In any event, you are NOT responsible for your girlfriend's debts. She is.
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Sanity Claws Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:42 PM
Response to Original message
7. Car can get repossessed
That is a huge deficit and will just continue growing as late fees get added on.
She might get sued civilly for the debt. Jail won't happen unless she passes bad checks.
She might want to consider bankruptcy and get her debt restructured.
My guess is that she's in denial or deeply depressed and can't figure out what is the best to do. I hope you can help her to figure out the best way to get a handle on things.
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:48 AM
Response to Reply #7
72. Bankruptcy has changed now - it is not necessarily that great.
My nephew and his wife got themselves into big trouble - ran up 40,000 in credit card debt and couldn't pay their house either. They did bankruptcy but it COST them three grand to file it and the lawyer's fees and they still have to pay their debts - they aren't totally wiped away. They are now divorcing and he is paying 1600 a month total for child support (one child) and HIS part of the bankruptcy debts. He only makes 35K a year so he has to live at home with my sis, cannot afford anything else until these debts are paid.
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:37 AM
Response to Reply #72
83. I hate to say this,
but he'll probably end up in jail.

Child support is a whole other ball of wax, and in my state at least (MI) you can be jailed for nonpayment.

$1600 a month for one kid? That's criminally high; I don't spend that much on myself. Was he making a lot when they divorced?
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:10 PM
Response to Reply #83
109. You didn't read - it is 1600 for his Bankruptcy payoff (his share) AND
child support together. You have to pay your debts now at least a good portion of.
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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:43 PM
Response to Original message
8. Bankruptcy isn't as extreme as some claim.
Find a reliable attorney and discuss it with them.
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:47 PM
Response to Reply #8
18. I can vouch for this. Bankruptcy saved my ass.
And allowed me to start over again.
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newmajority Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:50 PM
Response to Reply #18
24. Was that before the recent Bankruptcy "reform" bill?
(Thanks Joe Biden - NOT!)
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #24
29. It was before it, thankfully. n/t
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SoxFan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:33 PM
Response to Reply #8
184. Keep in mind the nature of the debt
Not all debts are dischargable under federal and state bankruptcy codes. Student loans, for example, are a major source of personal debt, and they are not discharged.

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JuniperLea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:44 PM
Response to Original message
11. If you don't pay the car payment...
First, cut up the credit cards!

They will repossess. Best to sell it and buy something she can afford before that happens. I'm not sure what happens with the credit cards, but I would call the credit card people and let them know before they come after her. Maybe they can work a payment schedule, reduce the rate or something.

So sorry to hear this... hope you make out ok.
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:46 PM
Response to Reply #11
17. point of clarification -- HE is not the one owing the money
...to the CC company or the car dealer. She needs to handle these things.
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Missy Vixen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:21 PM
Response to Reply #11
45. It's best to contact everyone ahead of time
and try to work something out.

Right now, nobody wants a repo car they can only sell for pennies on the dollar. It's better to try to work it out and get some money than no money.

Of course, this is IMHO.
Julie

p.s. You might want to sit down with your girlfriend and talk a little about a budget.
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 10:12 PM
Response to Reply #11
60. Can't "sell" what you don't "own".. The loan-holder has the title
and anything the car was sold for, would go to retire the debt first...

She will have to be satisfied with "throwaway cars".. the $500 beaters that you drive until they need a repair, and then find another one.. There actually are quite a few of them, and it makes saving for a "real" car easier, if you luck into a good old Toyota or Honda that runs for a few years..
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:52 AM
Response to Reply #60
73. My son bought a 1991 Honda Civic for 900 bucks. So far
he has had to do water pump, radiator, valves, etc. and works on it almost every day but it is still running and gets 38 mpg. We think it has a blown head gasket now and he and his father are going to pull the head tomorrow. It will still be cheaper. Older son was dumb and bought an S10 (I could've killed him myself) but it was red and had a DVD player (I know). Did a carfax and it had nothing but we found out right away it didn't even have the original engine. He paid 7 grand for it and it is worth NOWHERE NEAR that - it's a 2002. So he's stuck. He was also stupid enough to borrow another 2 grand to get himself out of jail for something stupid so now he owes 9 grand on a piece of crap.

Selling it isn't an option. I doubt he could get four or five for it....................and no money left for another car.

The other son with the 18 year old Honda is in much better shape.
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:58 AM
Response to Reply #73
75. y husband still commutes in our 91 accord EX
It's showing some wear, but still has the get up and go it had when we bought it in '93 (had 20K mi on it).. we've always maintained it well, and only in the last few years has it started to cost us for repairs..but it's still going strong with almost 200K mi..

we just recently sold our "bucket" Toyota Corolla wagon for $500... WE paid $500 for it 15 years ago (It was an 81)..Everyone in our family had driven that thing for a while, and it always started every time...
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:09 AM
Response to Reply #75
77. Oh hell I wished I knew you had a 81 Corolla for sale!
The first car I got my oldest son was in 97, it was a 91 Honda Civic hatchback. (You still see them everywhere). It had 117 on it and was maintained perfectly. He drove it until it had 350,000. When it finally died (in the third wreck) the valve cover had never been cracked. Same transmission, only water pump, fuel pump, radiator, timing belts stuff like that. Never a problem. I miss that car........if I could get my hands on another 91 with less than 150K I'd buy it as a spare car and just keep it for "when"
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:40 AM
Response to Reply #73
84. Auto depreciation is something we need legislation to address
I didn't know this, but a new car is apparently worth something like 20% less than what you paid for it the moment it drives off the lot.

That should be outright illegal.
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Tesha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:16 PM
Response to Reply #84
100. Why?
> I didn't know this, but a new car is apparently worth
> something like 20% less than what you paid for it the
> moment it drives off the lot.
>
> That should be outright illegal.

Why?

Did someone force you to buy the car new?

(It's been quite a long, long time since
I or Mr. Tesha have bought a new car and
for precisely the reason you've cited.)

Tesha
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:35 PM
Response to Reply #84
117. Why????
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 01:55 AM
Response to Reply #117
146. That's the $64,000 question.
I'd like to know why myself.
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Tesha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #60
99. Of course you can sell a car that has a loan on it; it's done all the time.
You just need to pay off the loan. This is problematic
if the car is "under water" (worth less than the remaining
amount due on the loan) because you'll have to come up
with cash to pay the difference, but if the car is
"above water", she's probably far better off selling
it than allowing it to be repossessed.

Tesha
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #99
119. The suggestion was for her to sell it, buy something else
but most cars are never worth what's owed on them :(.. and most people don't want to buy cars that people are behind on the payments.. banks want all their money..even what someone else has not paid up.. If she needs to keep the car, she needs to go and talk to the people who financed her car to see if they would work with her... they really don;t want the car back..but if her credit is shitty already, and she has 3 or 4 years left to pay, she might just be better off letting them have it back :(
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Tesha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:56 AM
Response to Reply #119
155. You apparently buy cars that are too new.
> but most cars are never worth what's owed on them :(..

You've said this several times in several posts but
apparently you buy cars that are too new. Buy a used
car that's three or more years old, don't finance it
with a lan term longer than three or four years, and
you'll probably never be "upside down" on the loan.

(Well, unless you buy an SUV that then drops a huge
amount of value because folks finally realize that
SUVs are stupid, non-sustainable vehicles.)

Tesha
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 10:37 AM
Response to Reply #155
159. We always buy used.. and pay cash
no payments no problems :evilgrin:

My son has many young friends who buy a nice new car, thinking they can easily make the payments, and then they lose a job..and DEEEE-saster.. :(
He's driving a 91 Ford pickup I found for him.. paif $1,500.00 for it and it runs like a charm..

we have a 91 Accord EX that we bought when it had about 20K miles on it..we've had it for 15 years, my husband has a 1988 Dodge pick up that he bought for about $4K when it was a few years old, and our "new" car is a 2005 Amanti with less than 25K miles on it, that we basically bought for 1/2 price when it was a year old...

NEW CARS ARE BUDGET BUSTERS, and if your employment of health is tenuous, it's especially awful.. :(
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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:13 PM
Response to Reply #155
176. actually, get a long term loan with low interest and low monthly payment
this is what i did. 6 years 5.6%.

i pay it off as if it were a 3-4 year loan, but if money is tight, i can fall back on the normal payment.
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Tesha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:35 AM
Response to Reply #176
193. That's a great strategy so long as...
> I pay it off as if it were a 3-4 year loan, but if
> money is tight, i can fall back on the normal payment.

That's a great strategy so long as you're dedicated
to keeping to the shorter amortization (payment)
schedule during the good times; we ran our first
two mortgages in exactly that fashion. But I'll bet
the GF of the OP hasn't reached that level of financial
maturity yet :( .

Tesha
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Catherine Vincent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:08 AM
Response to Reply #11
76. How can you sell a car that you're still paying for? nt
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:10 AM
Response to Reply #76
78. People do it all the time. You have to of course give the bank
the total amount to pay off the loan when you sell it - most people can't do this because they pay too much or start getting into "upside down" loans................
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:44 PM
Response to Original message
12. are both your names on the rental contract?
You could get kicked out of the housing if you don't pay. And that would be worse than losing the car.

Maybe she could take a second job? Or get a loan from her family to pay down her debts?
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TomInTib Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:45 PM
Response to Original message
15. Unless you are really creative, her car will be repo'd.
The CC crap is just formalities.

Fuck the car, pay the rent.

Eviction is its own kind of Hell.
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:07 PM
Response to Reply #15
38. Yeah, and when they auction off the repo and there remains a balance
on the loan, they'll come knocking for the difference.
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:53 AM
Response to Reply #38
74. Yup and they'll sue for that.
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TomInTib Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:51 PM
Response to Reply #38
123. Really? Damn, that is really harsh.
I had no idea that was common practice.
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Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:45 PM
Response to Original message
16. What will happen?
You'll be harrassed for several months by bill collectors at home and at work and when that fails, they'll go to court (and will even march right into your place of work to serve you the papers) and once they win, which they will, they will garnish wages. Believe me, I know.

I went through a vicious divorce almost a decade ago that resulted in financial disaster. At least back then bankruptcy was within reach.
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elehhhhna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #16
104. that depends on the state, re garnishment.
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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:16 PM
Response to Reply #16
177. does anybody read this OP?
it's the girlfriend who is out of work that owns her car that she cannot pay.

they cannot go marching into his work and garnish his wages.

this thread is fine, but people, pay attention! :eyes:
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aspergris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:47 PM
Response to Original message
20. generally speaking - this is how it works
And I say this based on years of experience in law enforcement...


getting into debt is NOT a crime.

If you write checks on a closed checking account, that's theft.

If you keep bouncing checks, and it can be proven that you had no intention of paying since you knew your account was underfunded, then (and it's a big IF to prove that), it can rise to the level (generally misdemeanor) of a crime.

But merely not being able to pay is certainly not criminal. There are all sorts of civil ramifications - bad credit rating, getting hounded by debt collectors, etc.

As for the car payment, eventually the repo people will take the car back.

Cause until you pay it off, it is THEIRs not yours.

Insurance will get cancelled if you don't pay it.

Credit card debt is "interesting". Credit cards extend credit KNOWING that some people will never pay it off. That's why they charge such high rates to higher risk people. The people who pay late and./or pay only the minimum or less than the full amount help the credit card company make a profit. Some of that profit is eaten up by the people who NEVER pay off their credit card.

The ultimate "solution" is bankruptcy. That's a complex legal topic, but in brief there are two main kinds, and it can help her get a "clean slate" in that much of the debt gets written off. Otoh, it will certainly limit her ability to get a mortgage, credit in the future, and affect her ability to get certain employment.

There are also companies that will help you manage debt and will work with the creditors to get on a payment plan you can live with.

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Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:56 AM
Response to Reply #20
87. About the car thing - if you are lucky enough to owe very little, they may write it off as a loss.
I had 450$ left on my car at a time in my life when I couldn't pay anything and was going through bankrupcty. Before I even filed bankrupcty the bank of the autoloan wrote that 450$ off as a loss. That was the end of it - kills your credit rating, but on their end it is over.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:35 PM
Response to Reply #20
131. thanks for the reply
peace and low stress and God Bless
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pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:47 PM
Response to Original message
21. the car will be repo'd, the credit cards are unsecured debt
Edited on Fri Jul-25-08 08:52 PM by pitohui
the car and credit cards will be taken away

she will have to declare bankruptcy or eventually pay the debt plus interest accrued

we do not have debtor's prison in america UNLESS she committed some fraud to gain the car/cards in the first place -- even then (and i'm sorry to say i've known a number of folks who committed credit card fraud) the likelihood of being prosecuted and jailed is so low as to not be worth worrying about

do not give this person any money, you are not saving them from jail, you are being blackmailed

in your shoes i would move out and not be further involved until she cleans up her own mess, all she will do is destroy your credit along with hers, which is already hopeless from the sound of it

keep in mind that if she's living with you and she "borrows" (steals) your credit cards to pay for something, you will almost certainly have to pay -- those wonderful limited liability deals that credit card companies offer don't hold when it's a live in or family member making the charges ii know someone dealing with this right now and the bottom line is that she will have to somehow pay $30,ooo (!) that she didn't charge because the lady was living with her and it will be assumed that they colluded to defraud the credit card company -- which can mean arrest and can mean jail if both of you are considered to be working together to create a fraud


basically you need to run for your life and extricate yourself from this mess

this is only one month, can you come up with an extra 900 a month forever to cover somebody else's past mistakes? can you really?

i think you do know what to do -- you have to go your own way now
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liberalmuse Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:51 PM
Response to Original message
25. Bad credit and the car being repossessed are the worst that can happen.
Edited on Fri Jul-25-08 08:57 PM by liberalmuse
I wouldn't take on her debt, though, because it sounds like she needs to learn how to budget better and cut down on the "wants' first. She she may want to think about cutting up the credit cards, and then figure out what her priorities are. It can be rough if you're using the credit cards for groceries and the like, but believe me, she'd be better off without them. If she doesn't pay the car payment, they'll probably repossess it in a couple months or less. She might want to let them take it, and start taking the bus. It sucks, but it's a lot cheaper. Or she can buy a used car for a couple thousand bucks and the insurance would be lower, too. The first step is to stop unnecessary spending, and try to cut down the necessary spending as much as possible. There is no easy fix, but if the worst happens, she can build up her credit again in a few short years, if she's smart.

On edit: American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCCS) is also an option. Give them a call and they will have her put all her debts on paper and then work out a budget for her.
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pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:52 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. she didn't move in with the mark because she's looking to fix the problem herself
Edited on Fri Jul-25-08 08:53 PM by pitohui
this person is being used, but maybe he has to find out the hard way


jesus i've known SO many people in this situation and yet no one ever learns from anyone else's shitty experience


love is a disease worse than crack!
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The Velveteen Ocelot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:58 PM
Response to Reply #26
34. DU's very own Debbie Downer strikes again.
Look. The OP loves this person. He wants to help her. Evidently the girlfriend got herself into some bad financial trouble, but that doesn't mean she's using the OP. Come on, not everybody is an asshole.
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kimmylavin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:27 PM
Response to Reply #26
46. Love is not a "disease".
And he is not a "mark".
He didn't ask whether he should stay with this woman, he asked what they should do in regards to finances.

My husband and I went back and forth on who's finances were worse during the three years we dated. And we stuck it out and helped each other. And now we're okay. Together.
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flvegan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #26
56. Oh, brother.
All that brilliance gained from a brief post on a message board.

You must be Kreskin.

:eyes:
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:51 AM
Response to Reply #56
85. I had to log out to see it
WHY is that poster still here?

I've had it on Ignore for a long, long, long time now.

"love is a disease"

:puke:
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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #26
95. DU's very own Ray of Sunshine speaks.
:puke:
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The Straight Story Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:42 PM
Response to Reply #26
122. I happen to love love myself, and if you knew my wife
you might find out what it's like to be in love :) It is better than crack.
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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:19 PM
Response to Reply #26
178. his girlfriend became disabled, that's why she's not working!
and her finances got screwed up.

you ought to delete your message.
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
31. If some company gets a judgment- and you don't show up for a judgment debtors' exam
The courts may well issue a warrant- and you may well end up in jail.

But that would be a long way down the road- and you'd almost always get plenty of notice.
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:57 PM
Response to Original message
32. Hi. How long has she been running this deficit? If you're in love,
and she is, good for you for wanting to help. I lent my husband $100 the third time we dated to help buy a truck :think:, and we've been married 26 years. It'll work out if you both want it to.

I want you to know my stepson filed for bankruptcy for obvious reasons, and it helped him tremendously. I just hope you can.

Do you have any bus routes around you or commercial trans. to get your honey around? I traveled around that way for quite awhile in my youth, but living in a city helped.

Anyway, good luck to you both.

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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:39 PM
Response to Reply #32
133. thanks for the reply
peace and low stress
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aikoaiko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 08:58 PM
Response to Original message
35. Sell the car, buy a 2k jalopy.

Use the rest of the money to pay down debt. Sell anything not nailed down to pay down debt. Start living within budget or get another job.

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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:13 PM
Response to Reply #35
41. that is the best idea yet
if the OP can sell the car. Is the OPs name on the title? If not, he cannot sell it!

However, I agree, dump what you can to get out of debt. Having a shitty credit background in this day in age is the last thing one wants. Perhaps the OP can take out a loan to pay off debts at a lower interest rate (consolidate). I did this years ago myself owning $1500.00 which was a hell of a lot of $ in the late 1970s. I paid off the loan in 18 mos. if I remember right.

However, not enough info. here to provide financial advice IMO.

Best of luck to the OP in any event as I believe his girlfriend is ill. :(

:kick:

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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #35
48. She can't sell the car unless she has the money to pay it off.
The bank holds the title.
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:39 PM
Response to Reply #48
51. Only rarely does one owe less than the resale value of the car. n/t
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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #51
53. That's my point. She probably can't sell it for enough to pay it off.
...and, thus, will have to add money she doesn't have to secure the title.
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:50 PM
Response to Reply #53
54. I know. It's a Catch 22. And if you let them repo the car, you're screwed...
twice as bad. (See my post below)
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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:54 PM
Response to Reply #54
55. Exactly. The only "solution" is not recommended if you want to stay legal...
I hear that some junkyards have big machines that can shred an entire car to little bits.

...and I hear that if you remove all of the VIN plates (check the internet for all of the locations), those bits can't be identified.

I also hear that there are junkyard owners who get amnesia when shown a couple of Benjamins.



...but that's just stuff I hear.
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:53 AM
Response to Reply #55
86. .
:rofl:

But the trick is getting all the VIN plates. They're not all obvious, and you need to get every last one of them.

I've never done it; never needed to. I honestly have never considered that tactic, but it's... a special one.
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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:23 PM
Response to Reply #51
180. try getting the resale value of the car
new car dealers *might* get that on the car.

you are not going private party.

if you sell it to a dealer you will do worse.

the resale value of the car as published is not what most people get for their cars. that changes the math involved in a big way.
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aikoaiko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:11 AM
Response to Reply #48
79. of course, the lien holder gets paid off first, but it can be sold and the title paid off

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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #48
96. Sure she can.
I bought a car from a friend for my daughtet and gave him the full amount so he could get the title. If you sell to someone you know, or a dealership, it can work out well.
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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 06:23 PM
Response to Reply #96
139. Yes, IF you can get the entire loan amount as payment...
...if not, you have to come up with the difference yourself, and this person doesn't make it sound like that's an option.
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 01:59 AM
Response to Reply #96
147. I bought an old, old truck for $1 once.
Odd, that: you can't give a vehicle as a gift in my state, the last time I checked- it must be a financial transaction in some amount.

As another poster above asked- why???

(I suspect this is also why the "Lucky 7" game on "The Price is Right" requires you to "buy" the car for at least $1.)
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Speck Tater Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:09 PM
Response to Original message
39. I had an aquintence who went through that.
Her car was repo'd and the credit card companies hounded her till she had her phone disconnected and got a cell phone instead. After about three years of her ignoring the credit card companies, they filed suit. After she ignored the suit, they sent her a notice of judgment. After she ignored the judgment for a couple years they stopped bugging her. That was about five years ago, and last I heard they had all given up. She moved out of the country shortly after that and I haven't heard from her for a couple years.

At the time she was unemployed, but doing misc short-term contract work. Otherwise I suppose they could have attached her wages, but since she had no regular wages, they had nothing to attach.

Apparently, it eventually just goes away, since I recently started getting pre-approved credit card offers addressed to her at my address. (She used my address for a while while she was between permanent residences.)
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stillcool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:15 PM
Response to Original message
42. bankruptcy..
as far as I know, her experience is what it's there for.
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bonito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:31 PM
Response to Original message
49. Let them take the car
cancel the insurance, can't afford it, can't afford it, if you guys are serious get a cheep 2nd hand car for cash, improvise in the mean time and insure it under your name as a second vehicle with her on the policy, cheaper that way. and last but not least

Hakuna Matata

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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:42 PM
Response to Original message
52. If you let them repo the car, the lender will sell it at auction for 1/2 the resale value or less...
and then they will come after you for the difference between what you owe and what they got at auction.

If you can get the money, selling the car yourself and making up the difference will cost you less in the long run.
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eppur_se_muova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 09:59 PM
Response to Original message
57. If she's not seriously in arrears on the cards, try calling them.
Sometimes -- SOMETIMES -- they will make arrangements to pay off the debt at a lower interest rate, or in smaller payments. The first step should be to close the accounts to further charges, though.

Pay the rent FIRST. You do not want to end up evicted, with other lessors unwilling to rent to you because you broke your lease (there are lessors' associations that keep track of this).

Then, pay the car payment, to prevent reposession, as several others have noted. Some of these car finance cos. only let you get behind one month before they come for your car (happened to me -- the car had been totaled and the finance co. didn't accept the payout check from the ins. co., so they considered the payment in arrears).

Next, car ins. Obvious.

Last of all, credit cards. Always pay off the highest interest debt fastest, this will minimize the total payout. Make minimum payment on the lower interest rate debt until the highest % rate debt is paid off.
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noamnety Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 10:03 PM
Response to Original message
58. the car and insurance have to go.
1. How far does she live from her job? Can she ride a bike, take a bus or walk?

2. Any money you chip in, I'm sorry to say, should be documented on paper as a loan. If you guys end up getting married, no big deal, she won't have to repay you. But if you split up, that documentation potentially will be important, as a judge otherwise will likely consider it a gift. (Not that it sounds like she'd come up with the money to repay you anyway, I guess).

3. That said, I don't necessarily recommend loaning her the money anyway. If she ends up having to file for bankruptcy anyway, you just threw that money down the drain.

4. Do NOT get married, whatever else happens, until this is either cleared up or she files for bankruptcy. If you end up together, you'll want one of you to have clean credit. If you get married, the debt will be considered yours, too, and that won't help either her or you if you can't sign a new lease or buy a house for nearly a decade. At least if it's all on her, you can continue to enter into contracts in your name.

5. It's not our business, but in yourself, you should be able to look at how she got into that situation and understand whether it was unavoidable, or poor decisions. If it was unavoidable (cycle of poverty, minimal wage, medical bills) then it wouldn't affect my relationship with a person. If it was from buying things she couldn't afford or spending it on starbucks daily, I would question the person's values, because they clearly aren't the same as mine.

6. I like to number things.
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elehhhhna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:36 PM
Response to Reply #58
105. she can file individually even after they marry, BUT
it's better to do it before, and he MUST NOT assume any of her debt.

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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:25 PM
Response to Reply #58
181. she's not working now because she became disabled
he wrote that in a message downthread 124 or 125 i think.
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 10:08 PM
Response to Original message
59. car gets repossessed, cards get "shut off"
It's just that simple..

If she's "broke" and has no way of repaying, she might be able to declare bankruptcy, and hopefully start over, but until she does that, she will get called and called and called ..and her credit is already ruined, if she's behind in payments of has late charges..
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Joe Holmes Donating Member (45 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 10:51 PM
Response to Original message
61. Well, heres a suggestion-
Edited on Fri Jul-25-08 10:53 PM by Joe Holmes
Why don't you and your girlfriend each get a 2nd job to pay off your debts? I notice you've had the time to make over 18,000 posts on DU. Thats a lot of free time spent on the internet. Surely you can find the extra hours to generate some more income to eliminate your financial problems.
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bonito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 11:35 PM
Response to Reply #61
62. How does it feel to tread on thin ice?
I smell a pizza.
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lojasmo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 11:44 PM
Response to Reply #62
63. i agree with joe.
Edited on Fri Jul-25-08 11:44 PM by lojasmo
Sell the car....even at a loss.

Buy a beater, and get collision only insurance.

Both of you get second jobs.

Pay off the credit card.
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bonito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 11:51 PM
Response to Reply #63
65. Go back to sleep
You missed American idol.
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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #63
183. read the OP's later posts.
Edited on Sun Jul-27-08 09:33 PM by CreekDog
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exothermic Donating Member (570 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #62
103. Why would giving sensible advice be viewed as disruptive?
I don't understand.
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Joe Holmes Donating Member (45 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:36 PM
Response to Reply #103
132. There are a lot of
"children" that post on this forum. Any advice that advocates grown-up solutions like hard work, not getting into debt or saving your money, makes them very angry.
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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:36 AM
Response to Reply #132
149. he said she was ill. can't work the two jobs she had before the illness
damn, you are harsh and seem to have some reading comprehension issues as well.
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Joe Holmes Donating Member (45 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 10:30 AM
Response to Reply #149
158. he posted the
" I have 2 jobs and she is ill" story the day after my first post. Read the post times.
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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:22 PM
Response to Reply #158
179. sorry Joe
:hi:
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blondie58 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 11:31 AM
Response to Reply #61
163. you didn't read the whole piece, Joe
he stated in the beginning that she had been ill and that had been one of her problems. As a person with a chronic condition, through no fault of my own, I completely understand. Sometimes there are things beyond your control that make it impossible for you to "pick yourself up by your bootstraps" as the righties are so fond of saying.

BTW, welcome to DU!
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siouxsiecreamcheese Donating Member (534 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 05:30 PM
Response to Reply #61
173. ..
he already stated above that he has 2 jobs and his gf has 2 jobs..
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CreekDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:27 PM
Response to Reply #61
182. what a rude message.
Edited on Sun Jul-27-08 09:34 PM by CreekDog
and as we later find out, wrong too. :eyes:
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:41 AM
Response to Original message
67. Your car will be reposssed, and your credit card will continue
to pile up every month like loan sharks. They'll jack up your interest rate, charge you fees for over the limit, finance charge, late fees, etc so even if you charge NOTHING it'll go up every month. Without insurance she could really be in trouble. If she gets pulled over and no insurance they could lock her up. If she has an accident that would be even worse.

My suggestion would be part time jobs if at all possible until over this hump. How did she get to this point?
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:57 AM
Response to Reply #67
88. The OP could have her get on her CC company's "hardship" program
I did that. My payments were $192/mo, and even though I had some (HA! SEVERAL!) late payments, my interest rate stayed at around 6.xx%.

That was actually LOWER than what it would have been had I NOT been on the "hardship program". I have one final payment to make, and they amazingly didn't ding my credit to death, despite the late payments.

It's worth looking into.
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NNN0LHI Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:38 PM
Response to Reply #88
107. I didn't know there was such a thing but thank you for informing us about it
Edited on Sat Jul-26-08 02:39 PM by NNN0LHI
I learn something new every day around here.

Don
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:13 PM
Response to Reply #88
111. You are extremely lucky.
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:43 AM
Response to Original message
68. If they get the car, they can then hound you for the difference
between what they could get for the car and what she owes. Credit card will go to court and they'll get a judgment and then they can garnishee wages which could get you fired.

Any chance you can go to a consumer credit service?
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Occulus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 03:00 AM
Response to Reply #68
89. But I bet what THEY could get for it is more than what SHE could get for it
Just a sneaking suspicion, but isn't that slick, how that works?
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:11 PM
Response to Reply #89
110. Not necessarily. They would only sent it to auction and they
won't get that much compared to what she could get to sell it, more than likely. That is why I've NEVER traded in a car.
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dsotm-wywh Donating Member (70 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 12:44 AM
Response to Original message
70. Seriously listen to Dave Ramsey
Forget all the Dave Ramsey bashers, your gf needs some major help.

Not only does he give good advice for getting out of debt, BUT he gives great advice on dealing with debt collectors.

You are not legally obligated to pay your credit cards, but it's going to kill her credit score and that can be repaired.
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backscatter712 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:21 AM
Response to Reply #70
81. Um, you are legally obligated to make payments on your credit cards.
Edited on Sat Jul-26-08 02:22 AM by backscatter712
When you get a credit card, you sign a contract with the credit card issuer agreeing to pay the debts, fees, etc. as written in the terms. Granted, this is a civil legal matter, not a criminal matter, so unless fraud has taken place, we're not looking at people being arrested or going to jail.

But if you don't make payments on your credit cards, the lender or whoever the lender sells the debt to, probably some sleazy collections company, will sue you, get a judgment holding you liable for the debt, then use the judgment to do things like garnish your wages, seize your bank accounts, etc.

One bright side of being poor is that if you have little to no assets - no house to put a lien on, unemployed, no car (the car's gonna be repoed), etc. you end up in the state of being "judgment proof". That is, the collector will look at your assets, decide there's nothing they can take that would even cover the court costs, and hold off on suing.
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Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 03:02 AM
Response to Reply #81
90. Right. You are legally obligated. However, you cannot face criminal penalties
save if you fail to appear in court for anything.

In other words, you won't go to jail.


By the way, that judgment proof thing.... that's me right now. And I have to tell you, in some ways it feels good.
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dsotm-wywh Donating Member (70 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 09:13 AM
Response to Reply #90
91. Trust me, the debt collection agency isn't going to go through all that trouble
What are we talking here, probably less than $15,000?

So, the CC company will sell it to the debt collector for pennies on the dollar. Then, they're just going to try to get whatever money they can out of this guy's girlfriend, even a few grand. When it gets to that point, just call them and tell them you want to settle for $5,000 and they'll go for it. Unless the debt is HUGE they aren't going to take any legal recourse.
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backscatter712 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:15 AM
Response to Original message
80. No jail, but it won't be fun either.
When you fall behind on car payments, the lender will repossess the car, and eventually it will be auctioned, probably for a fraction of its value, which might pay off part of the loan, but you very well may still owe a bunch of money to the lender afterwards.

As far as that debt, and credit card debts go, the debt will go into collections, you'll get all sorts of nasty letters and phone calls for a while, then eventually, they'll sue you, get a judgment, and use that judgment to do things like seizing the money in your bank accounts, garnishing your wages & tax returns, putting liens on your house if you own a house.

All this goes on your credit records with the three major credit reporting bureaus, and your FICO score will go in the toilet. Assuming you don't acquire any new debt, the black marks will take seven years to go away.

My suggestion: Sell the car if possible, depending on how much is owed on the car loan, if you're not upside down, you might get enough to pay the loan off and avoid that nasty black mark on your credit. Once that's over and done with, you might have a little more with which to pay rent, work on those credit cards, and so on. Probably not enough, in which case, you should consider bankruptcy. Your credit will be in the toilet for a while, but that's probably unavoidable, and bankruptcy will give you some breathing room by letting you stop making payments to the credit card companies for a while, erase some or all of the debts, and have a more reasonable payment plan for whatever debts are left.
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LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 09:18 AM
Response to Original message
92. The car will be repossessed. Quickly.
Edited on Sat Jul-26-08 09:25 AM by LWolf
After several months, maybe a year, of constant calls from credit card companies and collection agencies, if the debt is large enough, the card companies can take her to court and have her wages garnished.

Here are my suggestions:

1. Find a cheaper place to live.

2. Sell the car and pay it off before they come get it.

3. Contact the credit card companies and see if they will make a deal, or set up a payment plan, etc.; if all else fails, try a debt consolidation program.

4. She should cut up her credit cards, if any of them are still active.

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Lisa0825 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:22 PM
Response to Reply #92
112. Depends on state law.
In Texas, wages cannot be garnished.
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LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #112
114. I wonder how many states that is true for? nt
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Lisa0825 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:39 PM
Response to Reply #114
121. There is state by state info linked at the CreditInfoCenter
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LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 10:15 PM
Response to Reply #121
144. I hope the OP checks out the links. nt
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RadiationTherapy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:44 PM
Response to Original message
97. I had a conversion van voluntarily repossessed in 1997.
They auctioned it and have "pursued" me for that money; but BARELY (nearly 10k).

My defaulted $600.00 credit card was much much harder as far as collections. I still never paid, and they no longer contact me, but the CC collections were very aggressive.

I have a mortgage now (since 2006) and none of this stuff came up.

To get the mortgage my wife had to pony up the $125 she owed a cell company from 2000.
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mrreowwr_kittty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 01:49 PM
Response to Original message
98. A bunch of DUers will show up to lecture you on fiscal responsibility
Complete with personal anecdotes detailing their own amazing frugality, which has led them from poverty to a large nest egg.

As for you girlfriend, has she tried negotiating with the credit card companies? Can she downgrade the vehicle or go without one, or does she need it for her job?
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:08 PM
Response to Reply #98
108. Do you see a problem with frugality that might lead to a large
(or any) nest egg?
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mrreowwr_kittty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:16 AM
Response to Reply #108
148. Actually, yes. In a society that also tells people that spending is their patriotic duty.
Along with a multi-billion dollar marketing complex that brainwashes people into buying things they don't need. There's a definite disconnect there. If people had been dutifully saving their extra (hah!) cash the past 10 years, then the housing and credit bubble that's been propping up our economy would have been non-existent. I'm not inclined to blame ordinary people for not having healthy savings and retirement accounts when you had (a) a President who was demanding that Americans go shopping after 9/11 (b) predatory mortgage lenders and credit card companies and (c) banks that we can't even depend on to insure our accounts. Really, try to put the blame where it really belongs. Yes, some people foolishly overspent, but that pales in comparison to the way GIANT CORPORATIONS and OUR OWN GOVERNMENT have squandered our economic security.
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JeanGrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 06:19 AM
Response to Reply #148
153. Oh PLEASE. You are blaming Bush for people not having savings
accounts by merely saying "go shopping?" You are joking, right?

Yes people foolishly overspent. Comparing them to corporations that did the same is frankly, not helpful.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:18 PM
Response to Original message
101. Here is what you do...
call your lenders. They will negotiate terms if you call before they start the collection process starts.

For credit cards you can negotiate:
removal of all fees, late, ever limit, etc.

If she is unable to pay it back in the next 180 days, close the credit line and pay against the principal at the time of the first missed payment.
Again no fees should be paid or at a small fee only.

The car is different.
Depending on the outstanding principal it could go either way.

If you only owe a few grand left on a 18,000 car you should negotiate payments to allow you to get the title.

If she owes 16,000 on an 18000 dollar loan you may consider either defaulting or see what they have to offer.

She may loose the car.

If it goes beyond just loans you may want to talk to someone you trust about the options. I am not familiar with bankruptcy protections but this could be an option.
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Fire Walk With Me Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:19 PM
Response to Original message
102. What will happen?
The Republicans will laugh and laugh and laugh, and offer you terrible jobs for very little money with zero benefits and no chance for promotion unless you turn out to be one of them. If you ever challenge them, you'll be fired and someone else who can't pay their bills will gladly take the work.

They are building a cheap, frightened labor force, and have been doing so since the Reagan years.
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scheming daemons Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 02:36 PM
Response to Original message
106. This is harsh, but LEAVE HER.

Her managing of money (or lack thereof) is a major red flag.

Her behavior is not likely to change.

Don't let her take your credit down with her.


You've got a long life to live. Spending the rest of it cleaning up after her financial disasters is NOT the best way to live.

No matter how hot she is.... you NEED to move on.


There are plenty of wonderful women who are not financial parasites like your girlfriend. Find one.
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Blue Diadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #106
160. You do know she became disabled don't you? n/t
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Midlodemocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #106
168. John McCain, is that you? Newt?
She's sick, dude. How callous of you. :puke:
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treestar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:27 PM
Response to Original message
113. Car will be reposessed
Credit cards - they will go and get judgments against her - yet they can't collect on them if she doesn't have a great income or assets. that's the hard part.

See a bankrupcty attorney - see if it is worth filing Chapter 7. Credit card debts are unsecured. It may be possible to discharge them in bankruptcy - thanks to the new bankruptcy bill, if she makes a good income she may have to go with Chapter 13 payment plan - go to web site of local Bankruptcy Court and download the Chapter 7 statement and work it out with the numbers to see if she is presumed to be able pay them off - this greatly depends on her household size and her income. If she doesn't have a high income, chances are, she can discharge the debt in Chapter 7.

Of course, she won't be able to get credit for at least the next 7 years. But that could be a good thing, in a way.
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Popol Vuh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:33 PM
Response to Original message
115. Two things
Edited on Sat Jul-26-08 04:35 PM by Popol Vuh
Repossession of the car will happen. As for the credit cards? They will hound you with letters, phone calls and delinquent reports to the credit score agencies. Then they'll sell the account(s) to a collection agency who will do the same -plus- attempt to send someone to your door to serve you with papers. At which point there may be a court date set for you appear to refute the credit card's claim or you may not appear. Either way, if the account is legit, the credit card agency will win their case and then submit to your employer that they have a court case backing to garnish a percentage of your wages until the debt is paid. If you're not served, as I understand it, I don't think they can lawfully garnish your wages. Probably differs from state to state.




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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:34 PM
Response to Original message
116. Sell the car if you can
You didn't mention what the make/model of it is. Some cars hold their value better than others.

If it gets repoed, they'll auction it off and she'll be obligated to pay any difference between the auction amount and what she still owed.

By a $500 junk car to drive around in.

STOP using credit cards.

Call them and start paying them off. Try even settling with them over the phone if she's far enough behind.
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Lisa0825 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:38 PM
Response to Reply #116
120. It is better to settle by letter than phone.
Collectors will do their damnedest to try to screw a person, and they will take advantage of any slip up in a recorded conversation. The best idea is to make an offer in writing and request a "pay for delete" to remove it from the credit report because a paid collection can hurt your score even more than an unpaid one.
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:33 PM
Response to Reply #120
130. You're right
Settle by letter of course.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:44 PM
Response to Reply #116
134. 2004 Dodge Neon with 80k miles on it
She owes $5k on the car.
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 06:02 PM
Response to Reply #134
136. Depending on the condition of the car
You may be able to sell it for $5000 or a little less. If you can afford the difference, my suggestion is to sell the car.

She could pick up a $500 beater to drive around in the mean time.
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Blue Diadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 11:07 AM
Response to Reply #134
161. Here's a website that should give you an indication
of the value of her car.

http://www.kbb.com/KBB/Default.aspx

Follow the steps under used cars. Don't choose trade-in value, choose value for personal buying/selling. I've found it to be a decent indication of what you can expect. It's a small car, so that's a big plus for selling. Also check out your local classifieds to see what others are asking for the same type car.

Good luck. I hope things work out for the both of you.



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Lisa0825 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 04:36 PM
Response to Original message
118. Downgrade your life.
By making several rather minor changes lately, my monthly expenses have gone down by about $400+. If I had a $900 monthly deficit, I would start by canceling TV and internet, downgrading to the basic phone plan, selling the car, being as responsible as possible with electricity, etc.

I started using a clothesline to dry clothes, and just that minor change saves about $15 a month.
I started limiting my driving to only commuting to work and running any errands on the way so I am not making any extra trips. Savings: $50 a month
I only go out to eat and/or to a club once or twice a month now, as opposed to once or twice a week. Savings: about $300 a month
Shaved $15 off my cable/internet bill.
Shaved $10 off my cell phone bill.
Started shopping at the warehouse store. For items I use every month, I am saving a bout $20 a month.
I am absolutely cutting off all unnecessary shopping. I'm not a huge shopper anyway, but even little items add up. Probably saving about $50 a month.
Ended the bad habit of paying my mortgage outside of the grace period too often. My late fee was $22 a month and it cost me $12 to pay it by phone.

If you can't cut out enough to get back on track, get a second job. Even if you CAN cut out enough, it's not a bad idea to get a second job for long enough to then pay off the debts and put some savings away.

A lot of great information on dealing with creditors and collectors can be found at the forums at CreditInfoCenter.com http://www.debt-consolidation-credit-repair-service.com...

Using their techniques, my credit scores have gone from 525-575 to the 720s in about 2 years.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:45 PM
Response to Reply #118
135. we have done this
we have downsized....
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NNN0LHI Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:16 PM
Response to Original message
124. I feel very sorry for your predicament
I am not good at giving financial advice so I won't.

Best of luck.

Don
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lame54 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 05:26 PM
Response to Original message
128. They repo your car and issue you another credit card
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Keith82718 Donating Member (2 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 06:03 PM
Response to Original message
137. Can't Pay the Car Payment
MDMC,

I'd like to offer some practical advice, based on experience that I had in a previous job that involved "small loans". Some of my advice is likely dated, as I worked in that industry about ten years ago, so take it for what it is worth.

1. Don't marry your girlfriend, at least for right now, and don't do anything that could legally tie you to her debts. Although you may want to help her "on the sly", don't let any of the creditors convince you to assume any legal responsibility for the debts, i.e. don't co-sign anything, etc. The two of you are better off if one of you has clean credit than if neither of you does.

2. Start parking the car away from your home. If you live in a safe area, park it on the street three or four blocks away. If you don't live in a safe area, park at a Friend or relative's house several blocks away (be certain that the friend or relative is not listed as a "personal reference" on the car loan...they will look at those addresses). Take a circuitous route between your home and your car's new location, and assume that repo men are following you. Follow the same procedure when parking at work or any other place you go on a routine basis. Repo men will do more "James Bond" stuff than just about anyone beside bail bondsmen.

3. As far as phone calls. Use a cell phone instead of a land line...it is much harder for creditors to find cell numbers than land numbers. If you get phone service, don't let ANY creditor (or potential creditor) have the number...they will post it to the credit bureaus, where other creditors will find it.

4. Creditors will attempt to harass you at work, but there are limitations. Federal law allows creditors to contact you at work UNTIL YOU TELL THEM TO STOP. Once you tell them not to bother you at work, it is illegal for them to make further attempts to contact you there, unless they do it through process service. If you have a good relationship with your supervisor, and work in a job in which credit issues don't threaten your job, you might explain things to your boss, and ask him/her to speak to any creditors that do call to discourage them from calling back. Obviously, document any calls that you do receive, writing down the name, number and employer of the caller, the time and date called, and any info in the conversation that might be useful.

5. If you think that you are in danger of being sued, it is critical to try to avoid the process server - until they serve you you aren't obligated to show up. In some states, process servers can serve you by certified mail or by leaving service with any member of your household who is over a certain age (usually 14, but may vary by states), so don't accept any certified mail, and tell your kids not to open the door to anyone they don't know.

6. Generally speaking, you are under no obligation to deal with "debt collectors", by which I mean people or companies to whom you owe no money, but are trying to collect for a fee on behalf of a creditor. Ask anyone who calls "are you with the creditor or are you a debt collector?" You can tell debt collectors you won't deal with them.

7. Federal law prohibits creditors, debt collectors and repo men from threatening to harm you physically and prohibits them from threatening to have you arrested over your debts. Despite the illegality of these actions, it has been my experience that these niceties are often ignored when dealing with poor or otherwise disadvantaged debtors. You might want to record your interactions with these people, if you can do so without breaking any laws in your locale.

8. Creditors often become more pliable if you tell them that you are thinking of going bankrupt, especially if you tell them you've already contacted an attorney. Obviously, this is more credible if you have actually done so, or at least have the name of an attorney likely to take your case. Some attorneys do free bankruptcy consulations...since the first consultation is free, it might be worth going, just to establish the relationship.

9. Find out immediately if your home state allows wage garnishments for unsecured debts. If you live in a state that does not allow wage garnishment, it is a huge advantage for you. Your employer's HR department can probably tell you this, if you don't mind them knowing your situation.

10. Remember that debt collectors, repo men, et al usually get paid only if they collect. This motivates them to be very aggressive, and can often lead them to being extremely p*ssed at you if you are beating them.

Hope this helps.

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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 08:49 PM
Response to Reply #137
140. Welcome to DU and thanks
your reply was very helpful. :toast:
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bonito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 10:31 PM
Response to Reply #137
145. Welcome!!!
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MiniMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-26-08 10:08 PM
Response to Original message
143. One thing - sounds harsh, but don't marry her until all this is cleared up
If you intend on getting married that is. If you get married, you will assume the debt.
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1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 03:11 AM
Response to Original message
150. don't so that this won't happen...
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HiddenCSLib Donating Member (38 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 03:47 AM
Response to Original message
152. I had to declare bankruptcy
My wife decided to have the midlife crisis instead of me. After 5 boyfriends in 3 years, she asked for a divorce. She ended up with everything that was paid off and I got all the rest of the bills. When I did declare bankruptcy, it was very entertaining for me as the court went after here for possible pay offs of my debts. What was the best part was the courts were 1 floor apart.

I got hounded by creditors for almost a year. If they call you at work, TELL them that they are NOT to contact you at that number again and to converse via mail only. You do not have to put up with the assholes calling you and hounding you for monies you do not have. If things are real bad check into bankruptcy, the stopping of the calls and mail was a godsend to me.

My truck was charged off in the bankruptcy but I am still driving it as I have been keeping he payments up to date, if I miss a payment they can come get it.

Remember this point as it worked with the idiots that called me, I am making my truck payment as that get me to work, if I cant get to work I don't make any money and no one gets paid. Priority are this: 1-Rent, 2-utilities, 3-car/truck payment (transportation), 4-Food (cheap as possible), 5-rest of the payments.
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:57 AM
Response to Original message
156. Honest Question: What Does The Itemized Debt Consist Of?
How much is left on her car loan? What are the payments? How much credit card debt does she have? What other bills does she have? What accounts for the 900 in a hole balance each month? Can you itemize it best you can real quick? There very well may be some easy things that could be done.
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 10:14 AM
Response to Original message
157. Oh, And A Few Other Things:
DO NOT DECLARE BANKRUPTCY YET. Consider all other options prior to ruining credit.

And also ignore all the crap in this thread putting down your girlfriend or telling you to break it off with her. You didn't ask for relationship advice, you asked for financial advice. You're in love with her and likely her with you, and I couldn't be happier for you. I hope with all my might you find a good way out of this situation.
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alcibiades_mystery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 11:21 AM
Response to Original message
162. Declare bankruptcy, or get credit counseling
You won't go to jail. This isn't 18th century England.
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BlooInBloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 11:32 AM
Response to Original message
164. Uh, debotr's prison has been outlawed for like 100s of years.
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blondie58 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
165. I want to tell you, mdmc what a man of great character you are
after reading through all of the replies. It always amazes me how many people urged her to "pick yourself up by your bootstraps" and even urged you to dump her and RUN! Those are really Republican viewpoints- wanting to put the blame on the victim, when sometimes it is just circumstances. I am sorry that she has been ill and myself am a firm believer in enjoying each moment, as you never know what life is going to throw at you.

The only things that I can think of in addition to what others have posted is to sell things. CL is free and local, but Ebay is where people can get into bidding wars that will greatly benefit you. Just see what you have lying around that you don't need.

Another thing that I have heard- now I don't know if it is true, but if you can send in even $20, they may call and harass, but it does show that you are trying to pay the debt.

One more thing is, I don't know what she has been ill with, but I do know that a lot of the common conditions have organiation that might help. For example, I have MS and I am pretty sure that if I was in need of financial help, that they would be there.

I have no doubt that the two of you will come through this even stronger. Good luck!
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Odious justice Donating Member (117 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:25 PM
Response to Original message
166. tell her to file chapter 7 bankruptcy.
IN a 7 you can liquidate all of your unsecured debt(except for child support, probation fees, and student loans).

She could also surrender her car in the bankruptcy.

Given the description, it sounds likes she makes under fifty five thousand dollars a year, which would allow her to file a 7(this varies per state-median incomes).

Or, if need be, she could always file a 13.

It costs anywhere from 1200 to 2000 dollars to file. A lot of law firms will work with you on payments.

Look into it.
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Kire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 02:34 PM
Response to Reply #166
169. "encourage" her to seek professional legal advice about this
I went chapter 7, this is the first time I've heard anything about surrendering a car

It cost me $1500. It took about a year.

Best thing to do is not to seek legal advice on the internet without consulting a real lawyer face to face.
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Odious justice Donating Member (117 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 04:58 PM
Response to Reply #169
171. Under the current code, a chapter 7 should take about 90 days
from the day you file. You can surrender any secured debts in full satisfaction of the debt under a chapter 7. When your case is filed the court schedules a 341 exam (creditors exam). After this hearing you receive a discharge in about sixty days. The only way this would take significantly longer would be if there was an adversarial proceeding against you-meaning the trustee is disputing the validity of your claims(income, assets) or if you were accused of fraud.
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Kire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 08:22 PM
Response to Reply #171
175. 90 days, if you have all your own paperwork together
which I didn't

once I got everything in, it was approved almost overnight
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Th1onein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 01:07 AM
Response to Original message
186. mdmc: I was a debt collector for 8 years for Equifax
Risk Management. Talk privately, and I'll tell you what you're in for. Depending on what state you live in, you might not have to worry too much--except about the car.
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DailyGrind51 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 07:36 AM
Response to Original message
187. Give up the car and cancel the credit cards, then negotiate down money owed.
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Marrah_G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:11 AM
Response to Original message
190. Your girlfriend is going to need to get a second job if she can
Otherwise they will take back the car and ruin her credit. If you want to make your relationship longterm, her bad credit will effect you.
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Lady President Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:17 AM
Response to Original message
191. Let CC Co. Garish Wages
Having my wages garnished is the best thing that ever happened to my finances. After defaulting on my school loans because of a couple lay-offs, I was never able to get back on track with the loan co. Once my wages were garnished, my loans were considered discharged. My credit score improved by well over 100 pts. and the payments are the same as when I tried to rehab the account on my own.

Sometimes the worst case scenario isn't that bad. Your girlfriend's car will probably be repo'd. It happens in my nice apartment complex all the time. Once she is back on her feet, she'll need go with a cheap used car for awhile. The cc companies will send threatening letters, but what can you do? You can't get blood from a turnip. She may need to declare bankruptcy, or she might be able to set up a payment plan.

Bottom line, with this economy we've all been there. :hug:
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