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personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: February 05, 2020 02:03PM
Has anyone gone through it and can give some advice?

PM is fine if you don't want to announce it to the world.



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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: space-time
Date: February 05, 2020 02:20PM
no advice, but best of luck.

I have friends that are really struggling with money. They go from one loan to another. They are always 15-20k in debt, usually on credit cards. Things like they need a new roof, or want to install central AC (they bought a POS house from an uncle without any inspection whatsoever, what a money pit that house is).

But they always go skying, take trips to visit family in Florida and friends in Canada, Ohio, etc. They have the best camping gear, like brand names backpacks and tents, kayaks, etc.

A few years ago he really wanted a Hero 4 cam. I got one etc Costco for $250 for them for Christmas. When we met on the 25th, it turned out he already bought one for $300 from Best Buy. I was curious if he returns one of them. No, he kept both!

They Iive paycheck to paycheck. They brought in the laptop for repair and had a post-it with monthly budget on it. I saw the figures. They have one 3 year old kid and are now desperately trying to have another, they spent lots of money on various procedures (AIU, In vitro, I am no longer sure, I lost track). First time they tried 2x to get this baby. Now they tried 3-4 times and still no luck.

Assuming they succeed, I have no idea how they plan to pay for daycare for both kids.

I am afraid that in 3-5 years I will come back and look up this thread to offer them advice.

Oh, and I also suggested they join this forum to ask for Mac/iPhone advice. They don't. They come and ask me all the time.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 02/05/2020 04:46PM by space-time.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: February 05, 2020 02:33PM
....keep up with the Joneses...........



_____________________________________

I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: February 05, 2020 03:43PM
Quote
space-time
But they always go skying, take trips to visit family in Florida and friends in Canada, Ohio, etc. They have the best camping gear, like brand names backpacks and tents, kayaks, etc.

Ha. I don't even go out to eat.

I will admit that when I have any extra money, I put it into camera equipment because that is my primary source of income, and when things first got bad years ago, I stupidly sold much of my equipment to pay bills. Well, surprise, it's difficult to make money when you don't have the tools of the trade. RollingEyesSmiley5 I should point out that it wasn't pure stupidity; part of the decision to sell equipment is because I was doing things that I hoped would increase my income--but they did nothing significant.



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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: anonymouse1
Date: February 05, 2020 03:53PM
Looked into it closely at a low point, was fortunate and didn't need it.

What do you want to know?
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: February 05, 2020 04:24PM
I guess I'm mostly just trying to figure out how to find a good (and inexpensive) attorney. I'm well past the should-I?/shouldn't-I? decision, and my prior hesitance has put me in a real pickle.

There is some kind of a reduced-cost program for lower income people (yep, that's me) on the local legal aid site. I don't know if it would be worth it to pay more for a regular attorney.



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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: February 05, 2020 05:48PM
• Call (404) 892-8227 at Clark Howard. You'll get a retired business person who should have some suggestions. Some are better than others, so if you get one not that good, politely excuse yourself and call back.

• Go to [old.reddit.com] on Reddit. Get an account with just an anonymous name and password.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/05/2020 05:53PM by Dennis S.
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HRe: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Ammo
Date: February 05, 2020 06:27PM
Good luck, AllGold. Don’t let anyone try to shame you - they don’t know your particular situation.



Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. —Wendy Mass
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: jdc
Date: February 05, 2020 11:43PM
meh. the personal stigma of having to say "I declared BK" is about the worst of it.

Im not sure you really need any "advice", per se -- justs stop paying everything and do it.

We delayed it, which made it worse -- and kept trying to pay CCs, which didnt matter -- all mistakes.

Ours was less than 10 years ago. 2008 killed us so bad it was frightening. We tried to hold on for too long. With 2 babies, my entire client base gone and all the sudden in a home worth 1/2 what we paid for, plus 2 car payments and plenty of other things you have when living a normal life... it was, but wasnt, a hard choice.



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Mr645
Date: February 06, 2020 06:29AM
Nev er gone through it but a little over ten years ago I was faced with my wife in the hospital for 30 days, ICU for 12, Myself living work during that time and being self employed, had virtually no income for that period as well. I stayed in contact with credit card companies, car lease companies etc Was able to make payment agreements with everyone and about a year later was caught up and back to normal. The only creditor that reported anything late was my mortgage who refused to offer any assistance. The mortgage company applied every possible late charge and fee and I had to file for one of those government mortgage modifications to fight possible foreclosure even though I would pay something every month.

Aside from that Americans Express, other credit cards, car loans, all waived late fees, never reported late payments, Amex and Discover eliminated interest even. Even sending them $20 (cards closed, or temporarily disabled) made them happy. Amex took my monthly balance and broke it up into 12 payments, no late fees, no interest for example.
So perhaps a lifestyle change and dealing with creditors may be something you could look at.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: space-time
Date: February 06, 2020 07:50AM
if you have some savings in a 401(k), RothIRA and also some stocks and end up with a situation where the cash flow is negative, can they force you to sell your stocks, 401(k) and RothIRA before declaring bankruptcy? basically if you declare bankruptcy at an older age, does it wipe out all your savings and you approach retirement without any savings?
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Acer
Date: February 06, 2020 08:43AM
Bankruptcy does not end your obligations, it buys you protection while you sort them out. An important step is negotiating with creditors to get reduced settlements and payment terms you can manage.

Dave Ramsey isn't everyone's cup of tea for everything, but I think this blog post about negotiating with creditors is very helpful.

[www.daveramsey.com]
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: dk62
Date: February 06, 2020 09:11AM
I went through that more than 25 years ago due to medical bills, but I am not sure how the laws have changed in the meantime. Basically, house and car, if fully owned (no mortgage), were protected, all cc debt erased. The creditors could go after your other possessions if they choose. So camera equipment is fair game, as is anything that you gifted to anyone in the last 6 months to a year. Don't know about 401k, was still a student at the time. I did not use a lawyer. But again, the laws may have changed.

Acer's statement is correct for Chapter 13, not Chapter 7. Chapter 7 erases all unsecured debt. And you cannot favor any one creditor over another (cannot agree to keep paying one of them while defaulting on others).



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/06/2020 09:13AM by dk62.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: February 06, 2020 10:08AM
....not a great option but if debt is on the smaller side......401K allow loans.....you are essentially borrowing from yourself and paying yourself back......

......it is discouraged because you wipe out your retirement in the 401K.........used as last resort.....



_____________________________________

I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Paul F.
Date: February 06, 2020 11:04AM
What JDC said; "We tried to hold on for too long."...
This is a major problem for most people.
A good friend of mine filed bankruptcy (has to be 15+ years ago now), and he came to the same conclusion; if he'd gotten agressive with problem solving (up to, and including, bankruptcy) years before, he'd have been in better shape.

Hang in there, man!
And, like Acer says, do check out some of Dave Ramseys resources. He's not everyone's cup of tea, but even if you don't buy in "whole hog" on his methods and practices, there's a lot of good stuff there.



Paul F.
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A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca c. 5 BC - 65 AD
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Good is the enemy of Excellent. Talent is not necessary for Excellence.
Persistence is necessary for Excellence. And Persistence is a Decision.

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Eureka, CA
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: space-time
Date: February 06, 2020 11:34AM
Quote
NewtonMP2100
....not a great option but if debt is on the smaller side......401K allow loans.....you are essentially borrowing from yourself and paying yourself back......

......it is discouraged because you wipe out your retirement in the 401K.........used as last resort.....

with stock market so high these days, it may turn out to be a good move to take a 401(k) loan. if market crashes (and it will), when you pay it back you get more shares.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Bill in NC
Date: February 06, 2020 01:39PM
401(k) is not accessible to creditors...but IRA protections are more a function of state law (here every type of IRA, including an inherited IRA is exempt)
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: February 06, 2020 01:49PM
Take advantage of the free 15 minute lawyer meetings. Make a list of questions and then see as many as possible.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: anonymouse1
Date: February 06, 2020 04:09PM
Also, check out a local. Halter of Debtors Anonymous. While they lean anti-bankruptcy, someone may be able to lead you to a good local lawyer, and the personal support is exceptional.

[debtorsanonymous.org]
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: space-time
Date: February 06, 2020 04:32PM
I understand extenuating circumstances...

but I looked at that reddit link and saw someone who took loans to travel the world for 3 years and now has 60k in debt. She wants to file for bankruptcy when she returns to US, then she wants to leave again and teach English abroad. She is too depressed to keep a steady job in USA.

That is just wrong IMHO.
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Re: personal bankruptcy?
Posted by: jdc
Date: February 07, 2020 01:21PM
Quote
space-time
I understand extenuating circumstances...

but I looked at that reddit link and saw someone who took loans to travel the world for 3 years and now has 60k in debt. She wants to file for bankruptcy when she returns to US, then she wants to leave again and teach English abroad. She is too depressed to keep a steady job in USA.

That is just wrong IMHO.

100%. I used to know of a guy that did a BK as often as he legally could. Either personal or a biz one. Just wrack up debt and then discharge. hated him.



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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