Can't Pay Credit Card Bills? I can HELP!

Credit card companies are blood sucking vipers. They will offer you credit on the one hand and take your soul with the other!

Who needs this advice?

This blog is for people out there who cannot pay their credit card bills. If you have lost your job or possibly have suffered from a debilitating illness, whatever the reason and you cannot pay your credit card bills...well this article is for you.

I'm sure you have already had many a sleepless night wondering what you are going to do, maybe you've had good credit your whole life, maybe you've already tried credit card consolidation and now that you missed a payment or two and your interest rate has sky-rocketed, your FICA score has plummeted and you know that you can't pay your credit card bills. Well, what I am going to tell you may go against the grain of many but here is my advice...are you ready, hmmm?

If you aren't working, if you are renting your home or apartment or sleeping on your brother-in-law's couch, if you are barely able to buy food for your kids:

DON'T PAY YOUR CREDIT CARD BILLS!

That's right, don't pay them. Don't file for bankruptcy and for goodness sake don't sign up with a consumer credit counseling company. All these people will do is take what little money you have left and leave you penniless, with bad credit and in a worse position than if you had never contacted them.

What NOT to do..

If you file bankruptcy, you will have to pay thousands of dollars to do it and then it will be on your credit report for ten years. Depending on where you live if you simply can't pay your credit card bills then STOP trying to pay them. Your credit will be clean after possibly six years (in some states as little as three). Whatever you do, DON'T TALK TO THEM. If you talk to them, you will be giving the credit card companies or banks the advantage and you will also be setting the clock back to zero on the six years. You will have to deal with phone calls but that is easily remedied by getting a cellphone and screening your calls. If you are not working, the credit card companies cannot take your unemployment checks. If you are working they can sue you and garnish your wages, but unless you owe them a lot of money they probably aren't going to go through the trouble and expense of doing that...it is a risk. Furthermore, if you are summoned to court make the company provide verification of the debt and proof that they own the debt. If they cannot supply this (and almost all of them cannot) you win!

Don't even think of calling a consumer credit counseling company!

All these people will tell you to do (after taking their fee which is quite substantial) is the same thing I am telling you to do right now (only I'm not charging you a fee). They will tell you to stop paying your bills, then after a certain amount of time the credit card companies will start negotiating with you. They will offer to settle with you for sometimes as much as half as much as you owe them but if you hold out you may be able to settle for 10 cents on the dollar. If you can settle with them, do so, if not you will have to run the risk of harassing phone calls (get a cell phone and only answer calls that are identified) and possibly a lawsuit. However, they aren't going to take you to court if you don't have any money. It's not worth their time.

There are more and more instances of people who owe money being issued a bench warrant for their arrest. These instances usually involve failure to appear in court. So if you are summoned to court, by all means go. What is the worst that they can do? The worse thing that can happen is that you will be given a judgment on your credit record. In many instances if they cannot prove that they own the debt they debt is unenforceable but that is another story. So what if your credit is ruined, the credit system is a contrived system put in place to control you. Stop using credit completely.

For the Naysayers...

Now, for all of you out there who think that this is awful, who think that I am encouraging irresponsibility all I have to say is these are the same BANKS that stole millions of dollars in bail out money using a Ponzie scheme that they benefited from. They took a risk, lost, could not pay their bills and now we are paying their bills for them! These are the same banks that have lobbied (otherwise known as bribing congress) for decades to stack the deck against the consumer. These are the same banks that have brought this country to the worst depression since 1929. So, don't cry to me about irresponsibility,that is exactly what the banks want you to feel, they want you to keep on that hamster mill until they have sucked every ounce of blood from you. You'd better believe that the CEO's of these banks aren't sleeping on their brother-in-laws couch or staying up nights worrying about how to pay the electric bill. Not only that but the money that was lent to you was made out of thin air! That's right, the money that banks lend to you they CREATE out of thin air, it's not your neighbors money, it's not the "banks" money all it is are digits in a computer made up. It's called the fractional reserve system and it's the biggest scam you never heard of!

Now, if you own a couple of houses or have any kind of real assets you then may have to consider filing bankruptcy. If that is the case you should speak with a bankruptcy attorney because if you stop paying your credit card bills they may go after your assets. But, if you are like many of us who have nothing, then just stop paying, there is nothing they can do but give you a bad credit rating and guess what, your credit is probably already bad!

In the end, it's up to you. You can try to pay them but if you can't pay your credit card bills, don't! Just don't file for bankruptcy and don't sign on with a consumer credit counseling company, if you can't pay your bills just don't pay them until they knock them down to half, then wait until they knock them down to 10 cents on the dollar, then think about it :)

Good Luck

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Comments 317 comments

Vladimir Uhri profile image

Vladimir Uhri 6 years ago from HubPages, FB

Excellent piece of work, Brie. I am using credit card only for practical reason. Otherwise I would cut it to microscopic pieces.


majicat profile image

majicat 6 years ago

Difficult times, require difficult choices. I hate credit, I always have. most people don't think about the interest they are paying in the first place, they never add that up and come to the understanding that what they are doing is BUYING money. money they will have to pay with their future earnings... the more they do this, the worse the future looks.

Great blog, Brie.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks, I hope it helps some people out there because I KNOW that there are a lot of people who don't know what to do. I don't use them at all anymore, bunch of bloodsucking scumbags!


Keith S profile image

Keith S 6 years ago

Brie, I am torn. Part of me says don't pay, part of me says hey, the banks are bad but a lot of people are no better.

I have a suggestion. If one doesn't pay, then all the physical merchandise purchased should be donated to some charity resale shop. That way the person who bought a wide screen TV or a boat, or whatever that he/she could not afford, does not get the use of it if he she does not pay for it.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, the thing is, a lot of people have paid many times over for what they have purchased because of the usurious interests rates, when you figure that out, along with the criminal lobbying methods (see the movie attached) and the bail out money...to tell you the truth I wouldn't worry about them AT ALL.


"Quill" 6 years ago

I was on the road you write of several years ago and it was a slippery road, cash advance from one to pay the other, so caught up in the high intrest rates to pay for my own habit.

When I finally cut them all up and began to pay what I could it took me close to 5 years but I paid them all. Today I carry one card and rarely use it except for travel and I keep all my receipts and it is paid immediately before I even get an invoice.

Credit is a privilege, abuse it and the privilege is taken away.

Great Hub and I do pray for all those who struggle...

Blessings


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Credit is a trap, a pit, a prison, I say don't use it at all.

Glad you could get out from under, so many people can't due to the economy now.


Moonchild60 profile image

Moonchild60 6 years ago

This is an excellent Hub Brie. Thank you for writing it, I am going to share it with a lot of people who, sadly, need this advice. But will greatly appreciate it.


chinadoll64 6 years ago

Hi Brie, I am currently $39,000 in debt and I can't stop using a card because I need it for emergencies like for food and medication that costs so much money and stupid medicare doesn't cover it. I have two daughters and I'm a divorced mom who rents. I also have a full time secretarial job. I just can't make ends meet with paying these cards. I never used them for expensive t.v.s or clothes or anything like that. Ever since the interest rates went up on them I'm scraping by. I would love not to pay them at all.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Feel free to send this blog to whomever Moonchild, I know that there are a lot of people out there who don't know these things. Also, the books and the dvd's on the site are very good, I have read and watched them and they have some great information too. Thanks for commenting


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Chinadoll: Eventually you will probably not be able to use those credit cards anyway, since you are just keeping your head above water. Every situation is unique, there is a lot of information on the internet which is where I found a lot of it. But, also I would recommend seeing your accountant..I did and he helped me quite a bit. Maybe with the health reform bill you will get the help you need and you won't have to use the credit cards any more.


Mitch e-kid 6 years ago

I stopped paying. And they dropped the $23,000.00 and said, pay $10,000.00 and we will put your balance to zero. Saved $13,000.00 after 2 months of not sending a payment.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Congratulation, now if just everyone knew this instead of spending sleepless nights wondering what they are going to do.

Thanks for writing and sharing Mitch e-kid


DonnaWallace profile image

DonnaWallace 6 years ago from North Carolina

Great article! There are a lot of people caught in the credit card trip, and your advice is solid. Thank you.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks DonnaWallace.


jj 6 years ago

I have 32,000.00 in credit card debt. I have 25,000.00 in cash. If I stop paying my credit cards will they come after me?

Thanks


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I don't think so, it's an unsecured loan, but I would take it out of the bank. It's not the cash so much as assets that they could take. But, if I were you I would check with your accountant.


DREAM ON profile image

DREAM ON 6 years ago

You are honest and to the point.Good hub.


cong 6 years ago

what happen if they sue you


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

It seldom happens but if it does usually you don't have to pay the whole amount. Unless you are rich and trying to just get away with not paying the courts are sympathetic. If you know of any attorneys you can ask them...some will answer questions on the phone. That's what I did, I called around and found a nice attorney who just answered some of my questions.


Milly 6 years ago

After a while, the credit card companies sell off the charged off accounts to a middleman agency which then sells those accounts in bulk to attorneys, who then proceed to sue on those accounts. The real thing you need to look at is the prescription date, which varies from state to state. In Louisiana, where I work in such a law firm, the prescription period is 3 years on credit cards. That means we have three years from the date of last payment in which we can file suit. Once the three years are up, you are untouchable. If you are sued, and a judgment is taken, you are then screwed for many years. Even if your credit report looks okay, the judgments sit on the mortgage books and can interfere with future loans, home purchases or sales, probates, etc. What you are suggesting only works if the accounts do not end up in the hands of lawyers.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Milly: First of all, thanks for writing. Question: Will a law firm sue when the person has no assets?


Milly 6 years ago

Yes, we do sue people who have no known assets. If a person inherits property, a judgment will have to be paid out before that person can get the property. So, we get the judgments and then just sit on them. In Louisiana, a judgment is good for 10 years, then we revive it for another ten years. Different states have different time periods for how long a judgment is good. Judgments do not always appear on credit reports, but will show up if a title search is done.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I would think with all the defaults that are happening that a creditor would choose the ones that seem like they have money rather than the ones that don't have anything in the hopes that someday down the road they will inherit some.


Milly 6 years ago

An attorney's office is the end of the line for a credit card account. These accounts are purchased in bulk for very small amounts. A judgment means lots of interest and fees on top of the original principal amount owed. If a person had money and was interested in paying off an account, they would have paid it off long before it ever reached us. Attorneys are in this for the long haul, not a quick payoff. The longer a judgment sits, the more interest it accrues.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, they can't get blood out of a turnip.


CJ Williams profile image

CJ Williams 6 years ago

Hi Brie. I certainly share your anger and frustration over what the banks have been doing. I also wholeheartedly agree that credit is a death trap and should be avoided at all cost. Like you, I WANT to "stick it" to the banks, but in my mind there is the basic issue of honesty. I can't bring myself to not repay what I have borrowed, no matter how much of a scum the lender might be. I don't want to be as bad as the banks....I want to pay them off and NEVER deal with them again. I'm almost there. Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks for the hub, I share your frustration, but maybe not your solution. I enjoyed reading it anyway!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I guess at some point, after they have charged 30 percent interest, I think you could say you've "paid" them back.


diabetesreporter profile image

diabetesreporter 6 years ago from Eureka, California

Anyone planning on waiting until credit card companies are willing to settle for "pennies on the dollar" should keep in mind that there are serious tax consequences for doing so. If you have $10,000 in debt and settle with the debtor for $1,000, you will have to pay state and federal income taxes on $9,000 of income. The IRS WILL know the amount you settled for vs what you owed because the credit card companies must report these amounts via a form 1099-Misc if the amount totals over $600. You could wind-up owing the IRS a lot more in taxes and interest than you ever would have owed on the credit cards. Unlike the credit card companies, the IRS WILL come after you. They don't need to sue you in court. They don't care how much or little money you have and can garnish far more than 50% of your income until your tax debt is paid off.


Tchardo profile image

Tchardo 6 years ago

Mostly agreed (and completely about how you mention the 30% interest equaling sufficient payback, so long as this can actually be accomplished and people don't just jump into this without due caution)... but I don't think ten years of bad credit is all that bad. That price for bankruptcy just in effect presses home the point all of us should have been familiar with before accepting a loan agreement: credit is not good unless under very sure circumstances and also for very empowering benefits at the same time.

It's all hard, Brie, but there needs to be some responsibility, and there's nothing stopping someone from just living honestly and frugally for a time... it's suffering, but it's also something to learn from, I guess. Even with children and such, there are government programs. I think bankruptcy sticks it to the banks enough.

Throughout bankruptcy bad-credit years, there are other options arising. I wonder if you've heard of the Time Bank concept? As usual, community and family provide answers which most of us have cut ourselves off from. It's also a good time to invest in one's self in the sense of learning from life, education (even if just from clocking hours at the public library), and generally growing up (something which never really stops happening as we live our lives, no matter how stubbornly some of us attempt to resist it). Of course, for people to make the most of that, they'd really benefit from counseling.


viktor 6 years ago

ahh the credit card days... it took me 4 years (2000-2004) to pay off 30K+ in debt.. admittedly, i was an idiot... i like having stuff when i wanted it.. then one day i woke up and i was what? 8 credit cards and 35K in debt?

i cut them up and payed my bill online.. but i mean like 3-4x the amount due...

now i just have an atm card and honestly it feels really good to not be part of that system of credit


Juno 6 years ago

Milly is full of it! Attorneys WILL NOT sue a person with no assets. The atty. WILL investigate a person and see if they do have any sizeable/seizeable assets. Her judgement claim is equally FALSE. A judgement only comes after a trial which you lose. Even if you were sued (usually by the card issuer) they toss almost all intrest/late fees except for the orig. balance, courts know the card co's slap all those BS fees on and they NEVER stick! She is full of crap! The diabetic guy is equally full of crap, the IRS may tax you on the forgiven debt but will be a far, far smaller amount than the orig. amount!(this in NOT true of BK, IRS does NOT tax forgiven amounts in a BK)...BK is also a good thing in many other ways. You can keep an exempted amount of any home you live in. You can keep up to $1800 in a car's equity, which seems like little, but most cars are assessed at a low value which is offset by any loan amt remaining-you can keep paying on the car if you want. If you file a "homestead claim" in your county, you can be exempted for up to $150,000 in home equity- meaning they cannot sue you for it! BK will cost about $1500 but protects you in many ways. You CAN rebuild credit in a short time after the discharge (90 days after filing). But not paying/no contact works just as described. The Card Co's will beg you to pay it for 50% of orig balance...in this state, the 6 years does not reset after "contact" it is only reset if you pay ANY amount of the account debt! i am NOT an attorney- seek your own legal advise!


juno 6 years ago

One more thing...don't listen to tools that think there is some "stigma" attached to BK or simply NOT PAYING! There is none, even Trump, GM, PG&E, your BANK have claimed BK. It is there for a reason, to give people a FRESH START! If you are afraid of some "stigma" don't tell anyone, nobody will know. Oh, and Brie, you're a hottie!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Woo Hoo! I like you juno! :) Thanks for setting the record straight, I had a feeling that was right but I didn't want to steer someone in the wrong direction in case I wasn't, such a touchy subject.


indebt 6 years ago

When should I contact the credit card company,or should I? I've stopped paying for three months now. Should I contact them now and see if they will negotiate the balance? or should I wait for them to contact me. I assume that if I am ignoring phone calls they will contact me via mail.

I have no assets, unemployed and owe 18000.00


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Depends on when you want to negotiate. You have the power not them. I think I have the book "Debt Cures" on here, that's a very good reference book to read. I know people who never contact them, what are they going to do if you have no assets?


Juno 6 years ago

Again Miss Brie is correct. The card issuer will contact YOU via mail and will offer to settle for $XXX, usually 50% of the balance. BUT I would not do it. For anyone with these type questions go see a BK attorney, they generally will not charge for the consultation. I am not an expert but know much of the subject. 1st thing, if you make below the median income (here it is $52000) you CAN claim BK. It is easy, you can keep most things you have within limits (which vary state to state). Many people do not need BK as they are JUDGEMENT PROOF, as in if you are disabled, have few assets, etc. The creditors WILL NOT SUE a broke person, it serves no purpose! You CAN do a BK and retain your home, car etc (with limits on the equity you have). In almost 100% of BK's they are NOT CONTESTED and it is a simple hearing (in an office) and 60 days later it is discharged. If you do not want to do BK, just DO NOT PAY and challenge the credit reporting agencies info every 30 days. The creditor reporting has only 30 days to respond, if they miss that, the debt is gone/off your report by law. With many people doing this they are overwhelmed and often cannot respond to the inquiry in time! Just DO NOT PAY or you reset the (I think it is 7 years) clock on their ability to collect/report. For Indebt, $18000 is not enough to claim BK, I mean you can, but not worth it. If you do want to do a BK, sell any cars with over $1800 equity and pocket the cash. You cant sell to your brother! Liquidate anything of value except house, check equity limits and be sure to fall within them. A BK attorney will tell you all of this for free at the consult.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks June, I love fans like you! :)


Mark 6 years ago

I agree with you Brie,I was downsized over a year ago.The bank raised my rate after the credit crisis.I tried to talk to them, but to no avail.So in protest I have not paid my bill with them. As more info has come to light and my unemployment continued,I am feeling like I have done the right thing.With the bailout, banks a reaping high profits despite my not paying. So I think they will be alright.I encourage everyone to follow suit and get your own piece of the gov. bailout.I have been paying off other bills and am preparing for my $10.00/hr job in this economy.Also cutting my overhead living expenses,per your suggestions.Now I can live on a lower wage.Not planning any new big purchases for at least 5 years.And then will only by second hand as my protest against corporate america`s greedy policies.Goodluck to everyone, I hope my post may help someone survive.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks for writing Mark. I think the only people who would not agree with this post are those who really don't understand the evil manipulation of the system. We are not in Kansas anymore and we have to adjust to a tyrannical system...the quicker you do that, the better off you will be. The people who believe we are living in a normal system will be the ones who end up paying the criminals the most in the form of higher taxes, depleted IRA's, dollars etc. Good luck to you Mark and please read some of my other posts that give advice on how to live in these days.


Swen 6 years ago

Hi Brie,

Been reading this thread and just had a few questions. I am retired (68) on social security. That is my only form of income. I realize that I am in a credit card crisis, with 3 cards and $19.000 in debt.

To help I have moved in with my daughter/gkids and we share some of the expense. Through medical issues (disabled for 7 years prior to retirement 65 - heart) and get this 17 angioplasties. Can't work. And can't pay cc debt.

3 attorneys have told me just to not pay. That bk would be foolish at my age, seeing that I have no assets. Foolishly I took a load on a small life policy to send to the cc company and now can't pay the yearly interest. Current cash value will pay it for 5 hears.

Just looking for your opinion. I will default on all three cards July. What can I tell them other than I can't pay and it is a treadmill. Credit score is 850, but I am not going to buy anything needing a loan.

Thanks for you comments.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

That's all you should tell them, that is if you want to tell them anything. Get the book "Debt Cures", (it's offered below the comments) if you can't afford to buy it (which I would recommend because you will refer back to it) then get it from the library if they don't have it ask them to order it. It's a great resource. Make sure they don't have any telephone numbers, don't GIVE THEM ANY FURTHER INFORMATION! They will call and harass you. They will want you to file for bankruptcy but as far as I can see there is no benefit to you to do that. It must benefit them in some way (which is reason enough not to do it). But, also it costs money to file bankruptcy and it's on your credit record longer than a stop in payment. Whatever you do, don't talk to them after the one time and DON'T give them any more money, every time you give them any money the clock resets. If you have a land-line, disconnect it. Get a cell phone and only answer the calls that you know, if you don't know who it is don't answer. If you mistakenly answer it and it's a collector hang up. Ignore all letters that say that they want to mitigate the debt, just throw them away. If for some reason they do decide to sue you (which I highly doubt) then go to court and explain your circumstances, the courts are usually sympathetic and nothing will happen. Depending on where you live, after a certain number of years the debt will drop off (the book will tell you how many or you can ask your lawyer..it depends on the state). They won't sue you because you have nothing. Your credit score will plummet but who cares. Save any money you can for emergencies. I just wish others would do this before they give the CC companies all the money they have and then have nothing to live on. The CC companies are pure evil as far as I'm concerned. The banks get all the bail out money and we are left with nothing. Good luck to you, you will feel better after this is all done. And don't feel bad, there are many of us out there.


Rob 6 years ago

I know that you write for a living and everyone is a critic….but Brie, hard to believe that you are only speaking to the populous that is out of work when you justify everything by "are the same BANKS that stole millions of dollars in bail out money using a ponzi scheme" Great logic Brie! You should be ashamed of yourself, as you appear better educated and you know the difference. Happy to dive into this subject, but that’s another discussion.

No one forces people to use their credit cards. Most can’t live within their means, this is what is at the heart of most of the credit card debt. I agree with helping the jobless, but you realize that the majority of the people that will utilize this strategy will not be jobless.

It’ll be just more people trying not to be accountable and scamming the system, costing us ALL more in the end. Thanks Brie. Nice service to the betterment of society. Be more responsible, if not for your own ideologies, for the others that have to keep cleaning up the messes that these irresponsibility’s create. The Americans that live within their means, care our jobless friends, and will have to now work harder to make the difference up.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

You know Rob if things were on an even playing field I would agree with you but I've got news for you THEY AREN'T! The Credit Card companies have all the cards, they have all the high powered lobbyists, they have government in their pockets, they charge usurious rates and lull people into debt. Yeah, it's easy to say oh "people are living above their means" when the entire economy has been systematically imploded by these very banks...No, I cannot agree with you now...to many banks have stolen too much money at taxpayers expense. I say if you can't pay them DON'T pay them and give yourself a bail-out, why not Congress is doing it for the rich!

You probably work for one of these traitorous banks!

Oh and btw, I don't write for a living; if I did I'd be homeless!


Rob 6 years ago

Well at least you posted my response, which I consider honorable, and fair. This at minimum shows respect for opposing positions, which is very cool of you.

No I don’t work for the banks. But, I don’t agree that they are any worse than any of the other established institutions and our government is much worse considering that they are suppose to be “civil servants” Everyone that uses a credit card has a choice. A choice Bri, they choose to spend, just like the government. There was predatory lending and borrowing, and everyone knew it. The credit extended was as bad as the credit borrowed. Yet the choice was made by cardholders to spend. But if the logic that you laid out applies, then it dictates that we should all stop paying our taxes? I do work, and I work very hard. I pay taxes and I pay my debts, and I live within my boundaries. I’ve been terribly poor, and now I’m comfortable. Yes is easy to say people are living above their means, because they are, were, and continue to do so. Bri. Do you really think that these losses won’t be absorbed by hard working people?

Obama claiming to punish the banks, is a total sham. Banks will make their numbers, and they’ll charge the hard working, honorable people for it. Most of the people that use your advice, will be screwing the rest of us, not the credit card companies.


Sydney Arnold 6 years ago

I can understand why people would think the Rob works for a bank. People on here are talking about not having the money to pay or having to make some very difficult choices. People are not like, "hey, let's screw the credit card companies so we have some extra money for drugs and hookers".


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

NO Rob, there are a great number of people out there that have no choice! THEY HAVE NO JOB, NO CHANCE FOR A JOB AND NO WHERE TO TURN. They have been ripped off by government and by the banks (in the form of illegal bail outs and taxes and interest and fees). Count yourself lucky that you have no idea what I am talking about but there are people out there, Americans, who have worked there whole lives that are becoming destitute. Read my blog: The Unemployed.


Rob 6 years ago

The vast majority of people that will use this advice, will, did and do have a choice. The current unemployment rate is 9.5%. Less than 10% of the population. Of the 10% that you are speaking about, those that have no job or are in dire straits, deserve the break. I never disputed this view. But 90% of the people aren't unemployed, and will be the majority of the people passing us the bill. I also disagree with "no chance for a job" everyone has choices and chances. I hope their chances increase. But as far as choice is concerned, PEOPLE CHOOSE TO CHARGE! instead of pay. Brie now that the card companies are public, Master card and Visa, this information is available. Take a look at who is using this advice, it's overwhelmingly not the unemployed. Those of you that are unemployed, use it, those that aren't show some damn accountability. Lack of accountability is what got us in this mess and will continue it.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

It wasn't lack of accountability that got us into this mess it was outright tyranny by our government and the people who really run this country. BTW, the unemployment rate is a lot higher than 9.5%, what do you do take get your information form CNN or Chris Matthews? I think you are very ill informed.


Rob 6 years ago

Bureau of Labor Statistics

http://www.bls.gov/eag/eag.us.htm

If you know of a better resource, please advise.

It was lack accountability Bri, if it wasn't then most of those "tyrants" would be behind bars.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

And boy we can sure trust the government can't we!!!

Oh well, Rob, you seem to know it all and yet you know nothing. There are none so blind as those who will not see. No use talking to you.


Rob 6 years ago

Bri....I expected more from you. I gave you a good resource (as requested) and arguments to back them up. I do not know it all, but I am well educated and informed. I just wanted to provide another angle for you and others to consider from what I've learned. I've read some of your other pieces, you are a great writer, with passion and great insight to share, keep it up.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Unfortunately you've bought into the system of slavery. The government we have now is a criminal government, they don't play fair and so I don't think we have any obligation to play fair with them either. They are systematically bankrupting and destroying this country and it's citizens, we are not being run by the people for the people any longer. You write as if everything was hunky dory and it's not. You give me back up from the same government that is raping and stealing from us, what kind of back up is that? You need to take the red pill before it's too late, maybe someday you will wake up. I find it incredulous that anyone could still buy into the lies that this government stands on.


Rob 6 years ago

Brie...this article was about "Advice for those who Can't Pay their Credit Card Bills" Not the government.

But if you are seeking an opinion on the government, well I agree that the government is a HUGE problem, as are entitlements, budgets, deficits, and waste. But we made them this way, it's up to us to change it. We start by making our voices heard and everyone accountable. Slavery is taxing the wealthy, because they are wealthy, which is destructive and a sin (envy). 85% Millionaires are first generation, meaning that they bought into the idea of working hard and capitalism. There is nothing wrong with capitalism. Extremism is bad in any form. Taxing those that did well, based on hard work is wrong. A straight % for everyone, is not only fair but needed in order to stop class warfare. As it will help defeat the base of the governmental taxing initiatives. What certain people think is a utopia. Everyone needs to pay their share, and looking at the numbers, the middle class and wealthy are supporting everything. We need to get back to the basics of hard work, accountability and common sense. No I haven't swallowed anything. Please do not assume that the discussion that we were having, pertained to how I felt about the government. You can clearly see that it does not.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

What you don't seem to understand however, is that the BANKS are the government now.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I tell you what Rob, google and watch the movie the Money Masters, then you get back to me, ok?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Pete Wu, I would be glad to approve of your comments if you take out the profanity.


Phineas2010 6 years ago

Why dont you recommend calling NCCCA (?) the National Consumer Credit Counseling Agency for Clients to call to get approved agencies, like Greenpath (I used to work there)who are totally honest and responsible. I am no longer affiliated with them but do believe in them. They used to have a maximum of $50 a month handling charge. I have heard the horror stories about the kind you reference in your articles but GP is not one of those.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I have had nothing but bad experiences with credit counseling companies which is why I don't recommend them.


Erica123 6 years ago

Dear Brie- After reading this, I have some questions. My husband had a credit card that was in his name only. He defaulted on it after we got married. He lost his job and my income was enough to keep our cars and home. He called the credit company (also his bank) that said they would forgive the debt and it would look as if he filed bankruptcy for the small amount.

Now, almost three years later, he received a summons from a company claiming they have rights to the debt, as well as his "immediate need to pay". He called and spoke to the company. They told him they could (and would) come after my home. (he is not on the title/mortgage/anything). I know that he needs to respond to the summons, which he is doing on monday. He is asking for proof of the debt, also. Is there anything else he can do, or myself to stop them from taking my home, even if the debt is not mine?

Other advice is welcome also. I am worried he will be arrested as we live in Minnesota, which has had a recent string of judgment arrests. People failt o appear to pay judgements and judges issue warrants for the arrest. Their bail is the amount due to the creditor.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Do you have anything in writing to prove that the original company said that they would forgive the debt? If so bring that to court. However, even if you don't the chances that the collection agency has proof of ownership of the debt is very small. Let me know how it goes. Also, don't believe the collection agency...they will lie and say anything to get you to pay.

How much is the debt? If I were you I would talk to a bankruptcy lawyer...just be aware that it is in their best interest (ie money) to have you declare bankruptcy...so either find a relative or someone very honest and I would get more than one opinion.


Erica123 6 years ago

We never got anything from Wells Fargo even saying there was a late payment. As far as it being on his credit, it is declared as a bankruptcy.

The debt they are asking for is 2500+ dollars. I wont declare bankruptcy. I have decent credit other than medical bills, which are being paid. His limit was around one thousand and he never maxed out the card.

The Link included is the story of the guy in MN who was arrested for filing to appear for a judgment. Similar to debtors prison.

http://www.truecrimereport.com/2010/07/debtor_robe...

Other than that, how do I word the letter asking for proof? just as a letter of demand or do I include it with the response to the summons?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Credit card debt is unsecured debt. I don't think that they can put a lien on your home. Please call an attorney to make sure that this is the case in your state. If this is the case then it is illegal for the collection agency to say this to you.

Check out this link: http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cr...

I think you are being lied to by the collection agency.

As far as the letter goes...what I would do is to call someone at the bank because a letter can take forever. Explain what happened and see if you can get someone at the bank to look into it. However, you probably don't even need to go that far because it sounds like the collection agency doesn't have a leg to stand on.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Erica, I did check out the link you posted and the guy was arrested for failing to show up in court NOT for the judgment.. an important point.


Adam Smith 6 years ago

An awesome blog Brie, whose advice i am sure has eased many people's minds. I always find it odd how it is quite acceptable for banks to legally thieve such a huge amount of money off people and yet folks leap onto their moral high horse when a handful of people, lacking the means, refuse to pay back their credit cards. So many people live in fear, and it is only by having the courage to not pay that you learn that there is not much that the banks and credit collectors can really do. To those respondents who blame the people who take out a credit card in the first place, do you not also blame the incessant, ubiquitous advertising - not just for credit cards but for consumer goods - that makes obtaining hideously overcharged credit cards so acceptably easy and that creates desire for commodities we really don't need?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks for the encouraging comments Adam Smith...as this blog gets a lot of flack from people who don't have a clue.


John 6 years ago

Out of a job, limited incomes, etc....I just stopped paying and never answered the phone as well. Send letter and tell them everything has to be sent via mail. Then I waited...2 1/2 yrs until a process server showed up at my door. Then I called and offered 30 cents on the dollar and they didn't even blink. $16K in debt reduced to $4800 paying over a year. Sweet. Credit rating will get restored in 3-5 yrs just when the economy rebounds.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Good for you John.


agent007 profile image

agent007 6 years ago from Florida

I had been living on credit and then lost my job. I stopped paying bills and do not answer my phone. So far, it has been two years, some of my debts have been written off, the others are still calling.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Good luck to you!


Gene 5 years ago

What ever you do, DON'T TALK TO THEM. If you talk to them, you will be giving the credit card companies or banks the advantage and you will also besetting the clock back to zero on the six years.

Brie, you're making a good case for people to SEE a LAWYER and for Gods sake, don't go giving advice you have no clue about. There's no such thing as "Resetting the clock" Secondly, a BK for most people would cost about $1,000-$2,500 not this THOUSANDS you're claiming. Your advice would make a collection lawyer laugh too. Sure the collection agencies cannot file a lean on the debt UNTIL AFTER THE JUDGEMENT and then it's "Katie bar the door" as they can legally get the law to force sale of ANYTHING.

Next time you write somehting like this, consult a lawyer..Sheesh


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, people can take your advice or mine. If they talk to them they are at a disadvantage and may be giving them information that is being recorded and can be used later. Maybe it only costs $1,000 to $2,500 (which btw is technically "thousands") in your area but in Manhattan it's much more. The collection agencies can file a lean on the debt but if there are no assets they are not likely to do this.

BTW: I did contact a lawyer and an accountant and I stand by my advice...you on the other hand probably work for a collection agency.


lea86 profile image

lea86 5 years ago

Wow.this is really get me a very useful info though, I almost to think to have a credit card for online shopping, but I agree that the disadvantages are much more that the advantages. I think to get a debit card is more safer.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes, anything that you are not paying interest is better! Interest = slavery.


eagen01 5 years ago

question.... i was just laid off, and being 60 and 20 years at the job i had, i will find it doubtful that i find another...

so this is the question,, i have no credit card debt, i do have 35k in a second mortgage... my thought is this what if i just use my high max credit cards take 10k from each and payoff the 2nd mortgage... what would be the CC recourse.

thanks


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

If you do that, it would be credit card fraud..and THEY would know and probably prosecute.


TerryJo108 5 years ago

The massive lawsuit against Wells Fargo / Wachovia, Indymac / OneWest bank, Citibank, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, GMAC..............can actually put a stop, not only to your foreclosure, but also to your house payments............

https://sites.google.com/site/sueyourlendernow/


Roger 5 years ago

The truth is they will sue you even if you owe a little but..... if you make less than $453 a week then they can kiss your ass (not sure about the exact amount cause it's 2011 now and it may have changed). I know this cause my dad filed a bankruptcy in 2003 and now he wanted to file another one. He lost his job, blah blah. Then he found a parttime job, $1000 a month gross, barely to pay rent and food. He got sued over $3,000 !!!! So he went to court and before the whole case hearing thing a worker from some organization ask him if he could afford a lawyer blah blah, he said no, so she told him that they have voulenteers that know law and give advice. They told him that if he makes $453 a week (I am not exactly sure about the amount but that was about that much, I might be off a little) then the c-card company can kiss his ass. They could ask court to auction off my dads car but only if it's worth more then $4,000. Well, he's got a 17 year old escort worth.... hmm, not much more then the new battery that he put in it so he took the advice. And indeed, the credit card company wasn't able to get any money. Not that it's a great thing to do, but when you have to choose, food on your table or paying off credit cards (most off it was to buy food, etc, my dad doesn't even have a TV) then you gotta do what you gotta do.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Truth is anyone can sue anyone...doesn't mean they will and it doesn't mean that they will win (as in your Dad's case). Thanks for the comments.


Just Me 5 years ago

Terrible advice... really much better to file for bankruptcy if you can't pay. Ignoring the bill collectors and hoping they will go away will end up with a bunch of judgments against you from a court (yes, even if the amounts are low) and that is MUCH MUCH worse than a bankruptcy on your credit report.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

I disagree and know of many people who have done this successfully. You must be a bankruptcy attorney!


SUSIE DUZY profile image

SUSIE DUZY 5 years ago from Delray Beach, Florida

Thanks for the advice. I am in the exact position that your are talking about. I am retired, have only socia secutity and an indepentent contractor job, and mountains for debt. I have not paid a cent in two years, or answered any calls. I appreciate this hub.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks Susie Duzy...you should take a look at some of my other articles, you might benefit from them. Good luck to you!


zduckman profile image

zduckman 5 years ago

Great hub!!!. You are absolutely right. I checked with a bankruptcy lawyer for a free consultation, and he said the same thing. I only wish I would have known this before giving 8k to a consumer credit consolidation service, which i eventually defaulted on.

Thank you


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Those Consumer Credit Consolidation Companies are nothing but scams. Thanks for writing zduckman...please post this on your facebook and get the word out!


VS 5 years ago

Great deal of troubles here ..my spouse, we have been separated 2 + years ..but now i live on the same property although as unmarried in the state of MD, by MD law with a marital settlement agreement ..MD law states after this amount of time married it is a 50/50 state ..he cant nor can PNC take away my 50% equity ..it is mine we cant sell at this time for property values have fallen ..would leave us with no place to go especially me and very little to go on we are both amicable in our seperation...i lived in the south 2 years but could not survive so we split the home and both live here as per our agreement separate and apart ...PNC has threatened to foreclose ,...will not work with him or both of us ...wanting all the fees and back mortgage payments ( they told him to apply for Hamp he had to stop making payments ) i know now this is not the case ..as i have involved myself to protect my right as owner of the property but never filed docket last year ..the loan is Freddie Mac owned and PNC is the servicer ..when i asked them to produce the note it is with former servicer National city Mtg..it looks to be altered and is a COPY ..not the original ...they harrass and tack on debt which all started when spouse went inot HAMP he was denied and Hamp confirmed unlawfully by their rules just last week ...On the 13th of March all banks were ordered to cease and desist on forclosure and all other activities against homeowners ..they refused to accept payment from spouse for over 1 year and kept him in loss mitigation...racking enormous debt...he is at a loss ...another pickle in the pot ...He is on the loan we are both on the deed ..they kept asking me to sign off the deed which i refused at my attorneys advice ..I have been living off a small amount of alimony ..Why didn't they ever file a docket to forclose...the intent to forclose letter was sent last aug 2010..the only attorneys that want to get involved want to represent my spouse not me ..cause he is the borrower ...i was supposed to be the borrower as well and in original mortgage papers the home was to be titled tenants by entirety NOT Joint Tenancy as we now see on the deed...kind of funny to me ... a bankruptcy attorney is ready to jump on this ..i worked 32 years in this marriage and for my home as well and I AM ON THE DEED so what can they really do ???

real estate attorneys dont know what to do or want to represent him !!!! NACA was one i contacted ...any advice would be helpful in this matter ......as well as the discover card that just filed docket on me to sue for 2,900 i dont owe all this ..last year when seperated i was making my required payment plus 10% ..then they told me i HAD to double payments their new rule i could not pay and negotiating with them is like trying to negotaite with PNC..this card was closed by me last year after they did this ...it was also used by my spouse( authorized user ..it had not been used at all in well over a year ..then i closed it ...someoen came here to try and serve me today but i was not home ..HELP ..all due to loosing our business in 2008 ..my spouse is able to make the original mortgae payments as he aquired a good job ..but PNC refuse to negotiate ...NO more MODS they have drug this out to extremes ...so why wouls they not have forclosed by now ..new laws only came into affect on April 13th 2011 telling them to cease an desist ...HAMP violated them for pulling him out of the program on a missing doc ..that program is well over a year old now ...with he being borrower us being deeded joint tenancy ..and the note looks altered ...CAN THEY forclose ??

What can i do about Discover ..sorry i know allot of information ..thank you for any help you can offer

VS


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

First of all, don't worry about the credit card people...there is nothing they can do..so what if they sue you, so what if they even get a judgment, you don't have the money. Just go to court and explain...in all liklihood they won't even take you to court, if they do the judge will be on your side.

Regarding the home, they have to have the original note..so just hang tight. I would get as much information as possible because I have heard of cases that if the wife was not on the mortgage that the banks could not foreclose. Read this: http://www.hadd.com/node/2409

I am not an attorney but if I were you I would just hang on and go through the process...look up the information I have on stopping foreclosures and talk to reputable attorneys (most will give you free information). Don't panic.


Ezybonds profile image

Ezybonds 5 years ago from Worldwide

Brie, you excel!

I learned this many years ago, NEVER speak to the banksters and never feel bad about not paying them if you cannot:

Proverbs 3 27:28

Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.

Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.

So IF you can pay them, do so, you took the debt, it's yours, HOWEVER scripture is a double edged sword, so IF YOU CANNOT pay them, you have no obligation to do so UNTIL you can.

If we keep trust in God, He will provide ALL our needs, but maybe not banksters wants!

You are doing VALUABLE work here.... keep going!

John (aguasilver)


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks John, I'm not so sure we should pay them even if we can though...since most debt is (at least to me) fraudulent these days. Best not to go into debt at all. But I don't see how paying these thieves helps. So many are in debt...not because of what they have done but because the Illuminati have stolen their jobs or caused them to go into debt. Moreover, they have taxed us illegally (without representation) for decades now. They have perpetuated illegal wars and encumbered us with national debt and inflation. So why give them more money? I'm just asking.


SUSANJK profile image

SUSANJK 5 years ago from Florida

This is so on pointe for me. I have no assets, lost my job, lost all of my savings, and 401K, I have nothing. I have not been paying my credit cards for the last two years. I have gotten settlement offers, never, ever answer the phone. I have been making some money as an independent contractor. Can the garnish any of that?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Not if they don't know you have it! Read my related articles about debt.


applecsmith profile image

applecsmith 5 years ago from Dallas, Texas

I agree with everything you said here. Great information, thanks for sharing. Voted up and awesome!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks Applecsmith.


happypuppy profile image

happypuppy 5 years ago

Yes, we are living in a tough time. Our expenses, including food, go up tremendously. My advice is buy only those items that you needed rather than those that you wanted. Limit your credit card usage. Use it as if it's cash in your wallet. If we choose not to pay our credit card debt, what do you think will happen to credit card rates? They will only increase, which none of us wants to see. I did enjoy reading your hub despite the fact that I disagree on not paying your credit card debt.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

We are living in an economic war and I have to say the criminals are winning..if the poor and the struggling middle class can keep some of there money rather than pay out the usurious interest that the banksters are charging after getting a 700 billion dollar bail out..more power to them!


Sunshine 5 years ago

Amen sista! Thank you for all that you do and for all that you are doing. So many people in horrible conditions right now. Only people to thank for this astronomical chain of events is our sorry lyin, cheatin, cold dead beaten, two timing double dealin, mean ass government! Behind you 100% and two thumbs up on your blog. Amazing job!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks Sunshine, you made my day!


Mick01 5 years ago

Hi Brie, I live in california, and I am being sued by cap one for non payment. My husband and I live on retirement, ss and military, and we owe more on our home than it is worth. I know there is not much they can do there but can they come into our home and take our personal items?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

No, they can't Mick01...they might be able to go into your bank account though..so I would clean that out and keep it low.

If you want to save some money without a trace buy silver coins and hide them.


Mick01 5 years ago

Hi Brie, Can they take our bank account even though it only contains our ss and military ret? Thank You for your help Brie.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

No, but I would still keep just what you need in there...better safe than sorry.


Mick01 5 years ago

Thank you Brie, I feel a better :)


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

You never know when they might change the laws.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

I hope so, that's why I wrote it. Please feel free to repost it on facebook, thanks for writing LittlePayday!


Wit's End 5 years ago

Hello Brie, I am scared. I was Googling 'what happens to people who can't pay their credit card debt' and I found you and still am not sure that your way is the best way, so that is what lead me to write.

At this time we are approx. $30,000.00 in credit card debit to a handful of credit cards. My husband is in the construction industry and due to retire in 3 years and I am battling an autoimmune disease and draw Disability monthly. This all started when my husband's work started to drastically slow down a few years ago. We were doing okay until we could no longer afford Health Insurance and well, due to poor past spending habits on my part and being scared to live without Health Insurance due to my illness, I would charge our Health Insurance premious monthly and needless to say, that was not a smart move on my part. We are now without Health Insurance and have been for some time, I can barely afford my medication. My husband is off of work more than on and he draws Unemployment when he is off. We are current on our home mortgage and we have equity to pay our credit card balances but unfortunately since we are delinquent in payments our credit scores have dropped and no bank anywhere will give us a home equity loan or refinance us.

We contacted an Attorney to file Bankruptcy but we have too much equity in our home to do so, so we can't. Honestly Brie, we don't know what to do. Everywhere we turn we run into a brick wall. I tried in the beginning to talk to our Creditors and explain our situation and many of them have been nice and worked with us as far as lower monthly payments, lower interest rates and excusing fees but two of them have not and will not work with us and they're the ones that call us constantly and now today I've received a letter from an Attorney in Mass. stating that we need to "pay up" the full amount due. Does this mean a lawsuit is on its way shortly? Will my husband's unemployment be garnished? Will they place a lien on our home? What will they do and what CAN they do?

I'm sorry Brie for the long "letter" here. I am at the end of my rope. We have considered borrowing from family but how are we going to pay them when we can't even pay our creditors and I don't want to be indebted to family either. None of our family members are wealthy by any stretch of the imagination.

Please help and thank you for listening.

God bless.


Wit's End 5 years ago

And we live in Missouri if you know how laws work from state to state regarding issues such as this.

Again, thank you for your time.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Hello Wit's End: I'm so glad you wrote. They CANNOT garnish unemployment and they cannot take your home. They can sue you but so what if they do...if they do sue you go to court and say exactly what you just said. They most likely will not sue you and that letter you received may be just a threat. If I were you I would just throw it away! Quit paying these people. Don't borrow money to pay them just quit paying them..they are a bunch of thieves. There is really nothing they can do. I wrote another article here on hubpages about filing bankruptcy..here it is:

http://hubpages.com/money/Read-this-BEFORE-filing-...

Read it..then write to me using the contact button up on the upper right hand corner and if you need more guidance I will help you as much as I can.

Really, they are just trying to scare you, don't let them. DON'T USE YOUR EQUITY TO PAY THEM! DON'T BORROW MONEY TO PAY THEM! DON'T SIGN UP WITH A DEBT CONSOLIDATION COMPANY!

Please read some of my other articles and watch all the videos and read all the links...the information will help you.

Don't worry you are not alone...don't freak out, everything will be alright. Oh and don't answer your phone unless you know who is calling. If you do happen to answer and it is a debt collector hang up on them.


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 5 years ago

Thanks for the advice Brie, I bet this hub do give lots of help for those in need. I am blessed that I don't use it at all...I would definitely share with others your advice.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Great, thanks...I need all the help I can get!


Wit's End 5 years ago

Hello again Brie, I've been thinking about all of this and about what you wrote in response to my post and I did block the credit card company's phone calls on our phone until I know for sure what we need to do. We are in debt to Capital One for almost $13,000 and to our bank's Visa Card for almost $7,000; there are several others but we have been managing to make the payments to them as they have been actually trying to work with us and have been kind about doing so. The other two - not so much. How much does a person have to owe on a credit card for them to take the necessary steps to actually sue?

I guess my question is, how did you come to this conclusion to just "stop" paying? Have you been there and actually done this method yourself? Do you know what the procedure is for when a credit card company sues someone? Have you been sued by a credit card company yourself?

Also, what do you think of when a credit card company contacts you and wants to settle your balance for much less? Do they contact us or do we contact them? The reason I'm asking this is because we are thinking of selling my car (it's 11 years old, not worth much) and some other items and were hoping that maybe there would be enough to settle this whole thing. Your thoughts?

As I said before, I'm scared. I wonder what is going to happen next if we keep ignoring their calls. I honestly don't know what we are going to do from this point, I guess it just feels a little comforting to actually talk about it here. Odd I know.

Thank you so much for all of your information and your input. If we continue to follow your advice I will keep you posted on how everything is going.

Again, thank you.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Contact me using the contact button on the upper right side of this article.


Ryan 4 years ago

Brie,

First of all, my complements on an excellent article and excellent understanding of what is going on in the world today. I am currently strategising on my credit card debt approach and would like some third-party input:

I am in a better position than most on here to repay my debt. I am $15,000 in CC debt and with my current budget I pay about $800/mo and will have it paid off in two years. This is about as fast as I can do it, and thus it leaves me without a lot of backup savings (which would really suck if I lost my job). I would like to know what your approach would be to this situation:

1) Continue to pay down as fast as possible thus paying the least in interest back to the bankster criminals.

2) Pay less (maybe only $500/mo) and save the remainder as emergency funds AND/OR for getting preparded for SHTF. This way if SHTF in a year I will at least be more prepared and can just stop paying the rest of my CC debt. However if it doesn't, it will take longer to get out of debt and cost more.

3) Another approach...


Ryan 4 years ago

Brie, please consider this in response to my previous post:

As on add-on to my previous comment, I've run the numbers and the costs of my using Option 2 (paying $300 less and saving) are an additional $2,250 paid to the banks in usuary (if I were to eventually pay it off) as well as extending my length of CC indebtedness from 2 years to 3.6 years (if the matrix remains operational for that long).


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, definitely #2 but if you read some of my other articles you will see that I think you should just default on it all together (if it is unsecured debt) and save that money because it wont be long now before the SHTF! And..buy silver and storable food with the savings!


Ryan 4 years ago

I would certainly like to default altogether, however I am hesitant since I think they would not have a problem showing that I have the ability to pay it (then again, I doubt they could show the proof I needed to pay it).

I have been buying gold,silver, and storable foods (albeit slowly) for over a year now so I am with you there! I think I will try option 2 for now and see how well I do making sure the extra cash goes to the necessities (food,silver etc.)

Thanks for your input!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Your welcome, good luck to you!


Henrybyster 4 years ago

Brie, I have had good credit for yrs. the last 3 yrs my job has cut my hrs in half.Which forced me to max out my credit cards, about 16k. I have been paying them, then I have to use them because they took all my money to pay them. This has been going on for 2 yrs now. I am getting knowwhere. Im thinking of stop paying them. I have old truck and rent,thats it. If I get sued. can they take away an inheritance I might be getting in the future? thanks


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes they can...so make sure that the inheritance is given to you in cash or you may be able to have it put in a trust fund so that they can't get it. Check with an attorney.


Henrybyster 4 years ago

So stop paying my cards is ok. but if I cant get inheritance, why do you say stop paying credit cards? I am very confused. does the attorney take it out of my inheritance? if sued. I dont want to keep paying credit bills , they are rippimg me off. and there is know way I can afford it. I need to pay late taxes this month


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Try to see if you can get your inheritance in gold, silver or cash..ask the attorney. Explain your situation. If you can't then they may very well go after your inheritance.


ricktm1949 profile image

ricktm1949 4 years ago from Akron, Ohio

Brie, what do you do if you own a home and still have these same issues? My debt to income ratio is so high that can't get a home loan modification and the mortgage is too high for a loan. Our household income to a big hit the past two years too. It sounds like if you own a home with any equity, this could be a bad situation to try and follow your advice. I have not stopped paying the credit cards, but are still using them to pay utility bills, medical bills and other necessities. Is there any way to make this work for me? I am going to put the house up for sale, but who knows how long it will take to sell it. Thanks.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Rick: I have written to you directly, check your email.


Rick 4 years ago

Thanks so much Brie for all the help you ideas you have given me. It really helped to ease my mind and give me a plan, that I would never have thought of. You are a real gem.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

I'm so glad Rick, good luck and God Bless.


RyanJ 4 years ago

Thank you so much for this! I appreciate hearing some new insight.

As of August last year I became really depressed due to a marriage breakoff (she didn't want to get married) and took stress leave but eventually left my job and was unemployed for 6 months before returning to the same job. Since that time I couldn't pay my credit cards and lost my cell phone.(I was able to get it back when I got my job back) I wonder now, what should I do? I tried to setting up one of those evil credit plans but was unable to pay that either. Since then they keep calling like 4-6 times a day non stop. I have gotten a second notice for full payment. I owe roughly 10,000 between a bank loan and credit card. I am Canadian and need some serious advice as to what to do next. I'm very young and do not want to consider bankruptcy, but is garnishment any better?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Ryan, I really can't help you as I have no idea what the laws are in Canada. If I were you I would call bankruptcy attorneys there (call several so that you know you are getting correct information) and try to determine what your best course of action is. In the U.S., we have the statute of limitation..so after a certain amount of years you are off the hook. It's usually better than filing for bankruptcy. But, I don't know the laws in Canada so you will have to find out yourself...sorry.


RyanJ 4 years ago

No worries :) Thank you.


Tyler 4 years ago

When I started college in 2004, I applied for a "student friendly" CC. Basically, that meant the same rules apply and you just have a lower limit. I used it for a very brief time and maybe had $500 charged. I paid off about half of it and then stopped when I was just totally broke and unemployed. Eventually, they sold my debt to a collection agency who called constantly, left threatening voicemails telling me "This won't go away." They even called my parents house, resulting in my mother going into a panic and paying it off, claiming that my credit would be forever ruined. The threats they made could fill a novel, but looking back on it now, I realize the majority of them were just fear tactics. All over $200! That's disgusting.

I also have a cousin, who teaches at an inner city school in North Carolina, makes very little money and had built up some debt. She had avoided creditors calls for the 6 years. She fully intended on paying them off originally, but when the threats started, she simply told them "I have nothing." She paid the companies that were willing to work with her and wrote off those that were not.It worked and her credit may have been damaged for a few years but it didn't have much impact on her life and her credit is fine today. As far as MORALS go, threatening a school teacher or a college student who have NOTHING,for repayment of small loans given by millionaire bankers? I should feel guilty? Please. They are lucky ANYONE pays them back now and they should be willing to take what they can get, when they can get it.

She claimed Discover Card was the worst to deal with.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks for sharing your story Tyler.


ricktm1949 profile image

ricktm1949 4 years ago from Akron, Ohio

Hi Brie,

First of all I want to thank you for all your advice so far. It has really helped me in proceeding with my issue. I do have something else to run by you, and you may think I am crazy, but...with business equity line of credit now hanging over my head, as you already know, I was thinking that if they do get a judgement against me and then put a lien on my home, that would be a real problem. What do you think about the idea of seeing if I could get an increase on home current home equity line of credit and then paying off my credit card debt, I know how you feel about that, but please hear me out, and thus reduce my overall monthly payments right now by about $215.00 per month and then increasing my mortgage payoff by another $10,000 to $15,000? Then I take the money to partially live on and invest the remainder in gold or silver as you suggested before.

This would increase my mortgage amount and reduce what would be left over if I sold my house and possible leave Wells Fargo with so little to get, that they my back off on the lien.

Do you think this is crazy idea? Please let me know what you think. Rick


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

If you do that and you run into trouble and can't pay ..they will foreclose on you.


ricktm1949 profile image

ricktm1949 4 years ago from Akron, Ohio

Hi Brie,

Well, I started the process of not paying the credit cards. I really had no choice, but as I see the payments increasing when each card comes, it's a little scarey. It's been two months on some of them and one on the others. How long before I start getting the phone calls? I imagine this is already having an effect on my credit rating, but I knew that going in. I guess it is only the start, but I had to make this choice. Judging by all the others that have commented, it will get better.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Hi Ricktm1949: I'm surprised you haven't received the phone calls yet. Just don't look at the bills when they come in, throw them away and don't answer any calls that aren't screened so that you know who they are. It's been almost 4 years now for me and I no longer get any phone calls or letters.


iamawsome101 4 years ago

Hi my mother-in-law owes $9,000 worth of credit card debt and she only works 15 to 20 hours a week and simply not pay them..The only thing she owns is a car that is paid for...What can they do to her if anything?

Any help would be appreciated..Thank You


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

They will harass her and since she is working they might try and sue her but if they do they will only be able to get a judgment against her so that her credit will be ruined. That's all they can do and they might not even do that. Can she retire and collect SS? If so, they can't touch that. She would then be judgment proof.


Tooearly2retire 4 years ago

Brie,

I love your insight. I am getting ready to retire medically from my job and will be earning a small monthly retirement from that job. I went through a divorce and accumulated about $19,000 in credit card debt. I have been struggling because I can no longer afford to pay this debt. I have stopped paying for one card but the other I am still paying. My question is, I have these cards with Banks that I also have checking and savings accounts with, can they get into my savings or checking accounts to pay for the credit card debt?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

I've heard of them doing just that...so if I were you I would close those accounts and open new ones. I would also keep as little money as possible in the banks.


Dee 4 years ago

Discover card is suing me. My friend who is broke and has no job was just sued by 2 different CC companies this past month. I have a court date at the end of March. My friend made a mistake by signing the form that said she knew she owed the money. I don't know what to do. I have some assets but am not making enough money to pay for groceries much less all my CC debt. We have a slow payment option through the court here, that's the deal my friend took. No negotiation on the amount tho. 10% interest too. If she misses a payment they can start taking her things. They already sucked money out of her account when she signed that paper. Discover lawyers have offered me a 7,000 settlement from an 11,000 account. I can't pay it. Help.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author


Hayley Richardson profile image

Hayley Richardson 4 years ago from London, UK

Hi Brie, saw your answer topic and thought I should comment on this just in case anyone in the UK is thinking of doing this because the laws are different over here.

If you are from the UK I would not recommend letting your credit card debts go unpaid unless you really cannot afford to pay them. If you don't pay then there is not just the possibility of CCJ and defaults, if you owe the creditor enough and they believe it is worthwhile then you can be forced into bankruptcy. This is expensive for them so will likely only happen if you owe them a particularly large sum of money but it is a possibility.

Also, despite the fact that bad credit will fall off your file after six years, it is a that time approaches that many companies will start trying to get their money back again, even if they haven't called you for several years. Not all banks will sell their bad credit on, certainly the one I work for doesn't, and they continue to work on cases that are many years old. When it's coming up to the limit they will look at other ways of getting their money back and extending the time they have. If you own a property you can have a legal charge brought against it for any unsecured lending you default on, whether or not you had the property at the time you got the credit. That would mean that when the property is sold any equity in it after your secured debts are paid off will go to the unsecured creditors you defaulted with. Even if your lending was secured against another asset, say a vehicle, if there is a short-fall once the asset has been repossessed and you still owe them money, they can put a charge on your property for the remainder. There is no time limit on the charge, which will stay against your property until it is sold, either by you or your executors.

What I am basically saying is that here in the UK, this can go on for a lot longer than you realise, if you owe a sum large enough for them to exhaust every avenue for getting the money back. Though if you do only owe a few thousand I think you could probably get away with this, plus if you decided you don't want to borrow any more money (which is a very good idea because debt is a weight that nobody needs) then you definitely could. If you did want to borrow again then it would mean a long period where you couldn't buy a house or get a new car.

Also, I would like to say I work for a French bank who only operates only prime, asset-secured lending. We are not irresponsible lenders, have never had a liquidity crisis and physically cannot lend money we don't have because we take no deposits- we are purely a finance house and have to borrow money in order to lend it. In theory every bank should be like this, but we live in a capitalist society and that gives the banks far more power than any non-government institution ought to have. Is it at all surprising that the people running banks are irresponsible when a large number of the people borrowing money are irresponsible as well? We're bailing out the banks because they lent money to people who bought the latest Ipad, or a flash holiday, or a night out on their credit cards because they didn't have the cash when they wanted it.

I personally think if you got yourself into debt buying stuff that you didn't need and couldn't afford, why should I continue to bail out the bank because you won't pay them? It's bad enough having to bail them out for their own irresponsibility as lenders without having to continue to pay because a lot of people want their debt reduced or written off.

I am a huge lefty but I wish people would take responsibility for their own actions. The world does not owe you because there is an economic crisis right now, the banks do not owe you because you borrowed money from them that you couldn't afford to repay. You asked them for it in the first place!

Obviously I acknowledge there are a lot of people who's circumstances changed, they lost their jobs, became disabled or had something else happen that means they can no longer work. These people should of course be given debt relief and I believe strongly in higher taxes to fund social welfare. I also don't think anyone should have to sleep on couches and work several jobs to pay off their debt even if they were silly enough to rack it up in the first place, because I think everybody has a right to a certain standard of living. What I do not believe in is people with decent jobs, who could make cut backs or even come to arrangement on individual payment plans with their own creditors without having to go through the costly agencies (I agree these are rip offs and I wouldn't recommend using them when you can speak to your creditors yourself), simply deciding they don't want to and don't have to pay.

Woah! This is a long comment!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks Haley. Although you say your bank is reputable I think that most are not. Most are nothing more than slave owners, lending invisible money to people at outrageous interest rates and then if a payment is missed adding fees and even higher interest. I don't know anyone who has defaulted on their debts if they had a job and could afford to pay them. As far as I'm concerned the banking industry is responsible for the entire global monetary crisis and should not have been bailed out at all. Therefore, I think that is actually an act of patriotism not to pay in order to defund and starve the beast. It's unfortunate the laws in the U.K. are so stringent but I am not surprised as that is one of the main arteries of the banking cartel. If I lived there I would move. Thanks again for your insight.


Hayley Richardson profile image

Hayley Richardson 4 years ago from London, UK

To be honest Brie, I do agree that a lot of the big banks all over the world have acted disreputably. I think my bank is unusual because it's relatively small and hasn't been involved in any of the high-risk lending because it could not afford to do it, plus we're bound by French laws (which I must admit I don't know the ins and outs of) as well as UK financial law so it's probably harder for us. I actually work in risk and we have always had a very conservative approach to lending, which is totally unlike the ethos in the city.

I think the UK has a debt culture as well, which is why the laws here can be so stringent. Unemployment is high, which is obviously a contributing factor but almost everyone I know who is working is drowning in debt but they all have the latest gadgets and gizmos. The recession doesn't actually seem to have curtailed consumerism over here to the level you would expect.

Most of the people who are seeking debt relief and defaulting in the UK have just spent so much on credit that their disposable income will no longer cover the payments and I'm not just talking about people I know. I was a retail underwriter for five years and every day looked at the credit reports of people who had mountains of credit card debt, many of them £50k+, but still just had to get themselves a new car and would write in and complain that they couldn't do without it when we would decline them for being over committed, like a new car was a basic human right. We actually have a referral rule for people that have high levels of indebtedness so we can weed them out and not lend any more to them.

Obviously I don't know the ins and out of the US and other countries but in the UK personal financial irresponsibility is a very real problem.

I'm like you, I'd like to see the power removed from the banks. I'd like to see a shift to the left, a hybrid socialist-capitalist system so that there was more control of the economy. I don't think bringing the banks to their knees is the way to do it though. Just look at what is happening in Greece!

I think life would be much easier for the man on the street if any changes are managed gradually and smoothly. Our whole system of living is too invested in the cycle as it is. We are reliant on business to manufacture food and provide us with the money to buy it. If the banks go then the businesses go, our money goes, our food source goes and then what? I wouldn't call bringing down the banks patriotism- I'd call it revolution.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well I disagree with you on several points. I don't think greater central control is the answer..I think that is what we have now with the banks..what do they say power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely! Greece is not a good example of what I am talking about, they are a good example of Banksterism to the nth degree. The average man in Greece never received any benefit, any money and yet they are being squeezed for every dime they have. Iceland is a good example of what I want. They told the banksters to go take a hike that they weren't going to play ball and they did.

I agree that we are absolutely too dependent on corporations and banks for everything in our daily lives. I think the answer is true freedom, small government and no taxation. That is what grows an economy. But, I'm not so naïve as to think that will ever happen. No, in fact, I believe things will get much much worse..but that is another story.


Timothy Le profile image

Timothy Le 4 years ago

I've been reading on your HUBs for a few months now and I have been reading every comment and response and my knowledge has grown alot since reading this HUB. I lost my job last year but I regained another job since then. My job now currently lets me keep my head above water but if the limitation on the debt runs out, will my credit be OK after 5-6 years if I'm not able to pay the debt off? I was reading on some of your response on how the debt can disappear as long as we don't admit to owing any of the debt and letting the limitation time run out until it clears from report but will my credit be ok after? My lifestyle has changed dramatically but my family has been supportive and let me stay with them and my sister has co-signed my car so that nothing will happen to my vehicle(as I need a car to get to work) and my job lets me not drown in my bills. If you have answers, I will listen! Long story short to sum it up, Will my life be back to normal if I decide not to pay because I can't due to the fact that I'm living paycheck to paycheck and everything I have goes to rent, carnote, food, and accessories like shampoo, toilet paper, etc. But i'm just worried about my life and question myself "Is it always going to be like this for the rest of my life?" What can I do to better it?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

What state do you live in Timothy?


Timothy 4 years ago

oklahoma city, oklahoma


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Read this Timothy: http://hubpages.com/money/Read-this-BEFORE-filing-...

Your state is "unclear" regarding how long it takes for debt to clear off your record; call a bankruptcy attorney in your state and ask them.


Timothy Le profile image

Timothy Le 4 years ago

well I used to live in miami florida but when I lost my job, I was forced to move here with family and I've lived here for about a year now and I've never received a letter from any creditors about being sued(yet). Could I possibly be missing anything? I'm just concerned reading some of others response to this hub and they're being sued after a few months of not paying but I have no real assets or anything under my name. I just have a job to keep my head above water for now.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

If they can't find you..they can't sue you, think about it. Read some of my other hubs about how to disappear.


T Halen 4 years ago

My 92 year old mother in law was living out-of-state with her daughter who died last October. MIL has dementia, is blind and get's approximately $1200 a month from Social Security on which she can live. (her care runs approx $1500 a month, meaning we have to cover the gap.) We are in the process of getting her accepted for Medicade, which will help. She has e credit card debt totalling approximately $14,000 (some of which was initiated by the deceased daughter) we are trying to be responsible for her without being responsible for her debt. Since she is not able to see, we have had her mail forwarded to us, so are just now finding out what a mess she's in. If we write letters to her creditors stating her destitution, will WE then be stepping into a situation where we could be liable for her debt? She has no assets...no car, no home, no nothing, so should we just let the mail pile up and ignore it?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

If I were you I would call each creditor and tell them just what you told me and tell them she obviously cannot pay. If they ask you ANY information about yourself tell them its none of their business. After that never talk to them again, never give them a dime..there is nothing whatsoever they can do to her except harass her. If you haven't done so already read this article that I wrote about bankruptcy and the elderly:

http://hubpages.com/money/Is-Bankruptcy-a-Good-Opt...


T Halen 4 years ago

Thank you so much....I can't tell you how upsetting this has been for us. She has no idea how bad off she is and even when we explain her circumstances, she doesn't remember. We simply cannot be responsible for her debt and have felt bad about that. Not any more. I will be sharing the article with my husband so he can stop worrying about this. We'll contact the creditors ONCE and let them know the situation, then we'll live our life and try and take care of MIL the best we can.


T Halen 4 years ago

Thank you....I feel much better about the whole situation.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

I'm glad to be of help. Really, if you look at it with the proper perspective this is a minor thing. Don't let it worry you at all, you are not in any way responsible for her debt and she is off the hook completely, so be happy :)


Rhermosillo 4 years ago

hello brie. I have over 15k in credit card debt & also have a time share debt of 8.5k in which I need to let go as well. Can I do the same with the time share & stop paying or does this wk differently? Also I have a mortgage/home is this something they can take from me? Thanks for all brie! I've been in the whole for over 6 yrs now & was even considering bankruptcy until I read your info. Please advice


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

The Time Share debt and your mortgage are NOT unsecured debts so they do not work the same way. Since you have assets I would consult with a bankruptcy attorney. But, make sure to get a few opinions to make sure they are accurate.


David 4 years ago

You mentioned that they can't take your unemployment check,but they can put a lien on your checking account.

In Colorado the only way to receive unemployment payment

is either direct deposit or debit card.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Even if they put a lien on your account they can't touch your unemployment money.


Janet F 4 years ago

My mom is 91, she has two credit card bills totaling 14,000. She has less than 5,000 in savings/checking. She does not have any stocks, bonds, or ira. She owns a home in her name. I am trying to pay off these bills, but I can't pay for hers and my own. When she dies I know that I am not responsible for the bills, but can they take what she owes when we sell her house?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes, the best thing to do is to put the house in your name if you can, remove the money from her savings account NOW and either keep it as cash or buy silver and gold coins and keep them hidden in your house. Depending on when she dies and how long it has been since she turned the house over to you, they may not be able to go after the proceeds from the house. Different states have different time lengths before it's off the books sort of speak.


Janet F 4 years ago

Thank you, Brie. Unforunately,she won't change the ownership of the house, which is in New York. So, than I can expect to be responsible for her bills after the sale of her house? The collection people are already tracking me down calling my phone number(I live with her as her caretaker, but have my own number)Should I talk to them about the situation?

Fyi- Not sure if this is important to tell but she set up an irrevocable trust. My sister and I are co trustees.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Hi Janet: Yes, they will go after the estate after she dies. In the meantime, it's up to you whether you wish to talk to them or not. The worst that can happen is that her credit rating will be affected and if they want they could take her to court. All that would happen then is that she would have a judgment against her. At her age, who cares! And that is the worst, that might not even happen. If I were you I would still take the savings out so that they can't go after that and then I would just ignore them. You might tell her creditors (once) that she is 91, has no money and that you have no money and that's it. You could also (after the debt has gone into collections) ask them to verify that they are the owners of the debt. I have an article about that as well. If they take you to court and can't verify that they are the owners of the debt, you win and they get nothing. http://hubpages.com/money/Validate-the-Debt...

Read it, it will help you.

I can't help you with trusts, I don't know anything about them.


Joy 4 years ago

In 2007 I lost my job and 6 months later my husband decided to leave too. I went from a 6 figure combined income to 0 followed by unemployment. To give you a bit of history I always paid my CC bills in full and 5 days before deadline. Then I heard I was considered a deadbeat for doing so and left a small monthly balance. After the loss of income it became a necessity, However, I paid my cc bills (over minimum) until I could no longer sustain. I had credit insurance but because I chose to pay the bill and not report my unemployment within 6 months it was rendered null and void. I wasn't looking for them to go back an pay past bills I just needed help going forward. I was unemployed over 18 months and getting scared. I live in FL and my last contact with any cc company was 2009 at the latest. I have been gainfully underemployed for 2 years now with an annual income of a little over 11k in 2011. Capital One has been making anonymous embarrassing call to me and my 89 year old mom.Now they are trying to serve me and so far we have eluded them. I drive a 7 year old car witch still has the original brakes on it and I own a bike which is my only truly reliable transportation. It's tough enough to find work and require 15k in dental work. If it's hard to find work now it will be harder for a 55 yr old toothless woman to gain employment. I looked up public records and found Capital One is suing me small claims court. After 5 years of financial hell and physical pain I'm about to lose my mind. Any advice?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes..read this: http://hubpages.com/money/Validate-the-Debt...

Make them prove that they even own the debt, if they can you will have a judgement against you but so what..it just means you will have bad credit..just ignore it, everyone has bad credit now. Don't pay them, save your money and use that money that you saved instead of credit cards. Eventually it will go away.


Remnant 4 years ago

If you open the link, read the lady's story, then read Steve's answer about how even if the money in your account is market (has to be direct deposit) it can still be

a pain if they put a lien on your account.

Lot of good information there.

thanks for your hubs


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, it is also true that anyone can sue anyone but that doesn't mean that they will. The best thing is to keep very little money in the bank.


SallyAmes 4 years ago

I live in South Carolina now for 18 months, prior to that I lived out of state moved here with the last of my savings to take a job. I was unemployed for two years, during the two years I made my credit card payments on time by dipping into savings. I owe about $4000 or about a $1000 on each one. I had to stop paying to provide food, shelter, transportation to survive. I spoke to a bankruptcy lawyer here and he said based on South Carolina law they can not come after me and not to answer any calls and after a year or so they will give up. I received a letter today from a recovery center wanting me to settle the debt, have not paid anything in a year. What are my options, can I be arrested, can affort to pay or loose my job for that matter?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Just throw it away. Do NOT speak to them. If you pay ANYTHING at all it starts the clock ticking all over again. South Carolina has a statute of limitations on debt of 3 years! In 14 months you will be scott free. IF, you get something that has a court date on that..then call the attorney that you spoke to before...anything else just throw away.


monicamelendez profile image

monicamelendez 4 years ago from Salt Lake City

Yeah Brie is 100% right. It's highly unlikely that this will get you sued unless your balances are really really high.


mismazda profile image

mismazda 4 years ago from a southern georgia peach

Great hub..a lot of great tips to take into consideration for those having these problems..Voted up and useful.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks "mismazda", I hope it helps those who need it.


Survey pet 4 years ago

Hey car loans but don't have the car anymore it was written off without insurance on it so now all up there maybe 60 grand owing should this person go bankrupt They can't afford to pay anything but they work and earn 40 grand a year but can't afford to pay it on top of everything else what should this person do this person hasn't slept in 3 days coz they are scared of what they are gunna do and scared of what's gunna happen


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

Since this person works they may try and garnish their wages. If I were you I would talk to a bankruptcy attorney or legal aid and see if you can file bankruptcy.


ben 3 years ago

40 grand is a lot of money to make per year. I make 32 grand but I am in the process of filing for bankrupty chapter 7 as we speak. Trust me. Go hire a lawyer, To hire my lawyer, it cost around 1250, I had to sacrifice alot of meals to get that but I am definitely happy that I am situated. 40 grand is alot of money to make. 20 dollars an hour is not going to let you off the hook, they're probably going to tell you to sacrifice some of your unnecessary bills and concentrate on being a cheaper and smarter person. At least that's what my lawyer told me. but trust me, that 1250 for lawyer cost + like 250-300 to file for bankruptcy really goes a long way to less stress and being content.


3 years ago

I was wondering if you would know whether this information applies in Australia?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

Each country has their own rules, you would have to find out what the rules are for Australia. Call a bankruptcy attorney and ask them what the statute of limitations is for your area. Good Luck


Ruby nguyen 3 years ago

Im $40000 debt... Im about to not pay them... How many years for massachusett to clear up brie?? Thanks


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

MA is 6 years. I was $38,000 in debt and I lived in NY which is also a 6 year state. I never paid them but I had to go underground and off the grid to do it. It can be done in a 6 year state but you really have to disappear because if they can serve you they will and then you're stuck with a judgment and judgments last 10 years and can be renewed. It's not easy. So you have to decide what's best for you. I now live in a 5 year state and I'm untouchable..they can no longer sue me..so I'm done with the nightmare.


Ruby nguyen 3 years ago

So what should i do??? Plz help


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

Read this: http://hubpages.com/education/How-to-Disappear...

I can't tell you what to do..I don't know your circumstances. Can you get work that pays cash? Can you move without forwarding your mail? Can you live somewhere without your name on the lease either as a roommate or with a relative? Can you do that for 6 years? Or for at least 3 and then move to a 3 year state? You have to look at your circumstances and see what is available to you. Read all my articles on debt.


Ruby 3 years ago

I cant .. I have 2 cars loan.. Appartment under my name..i will not make a payment until they low interest rate


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, if you are willing to pay them something then I would do just what you are doing..wait until they lower the amount and make a deal with them..especially since you can't go underground.


Ruby nguyen 3 years ago

What they will do to me if i dont pay them?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

They will sue you and get a judgment against you. The judgment will last 10 years and can be renewed. It will affect your credit for a very long time. You should probably file for bankruptcy.


Ruby 3 years ago

I have nothing .. Still owe a lot money from 2 cars..no house no saving no 401k.. 8 credit cards..Each credit card i owe around $5000 the highest $8500... Im a single mom.. My son only 8 months old.. I really dont know what to do..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

Call legal aid in your town and see if you can file bankruptcy.


Ruby 3 years ago

If i life bankruptcy they take the car too... I need a car to go work


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 3 years ago from Manhattan Author

They might not take the car..ask a bankruptcy attorney.


Amanda 2 years ago

I just recently received a notice from court that I am being sued for 1, 000 from one of my credit card companies. I have 7 cards that I have not made payments on. Now I am scared. I have 35 days to respond and do not have money for a bankruptsy attorney. I do not know what to do


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Go to court and when you get there ask them to validate the debt. They have to show that they own your debt. Read this: http://hubpages.com/money/Validate-the-Debt...


Nikki 2 years ago

Thank you so much for this article. I have been having anxiety attacks because I haven't been able to work for the past few months and I feel like I'm drowning in the ever-growing credit card debt in the form of late fees and insane interest charges.

Now I'm going to take some deep breaths and focus on getting my life back to where I want it to be instead of having Chase suck the life out of me.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

I'm glad I could help.

Chase is such an evil bank anyway. Read these articles:

http://hubpages.com/politics/Illuminati-Symbols-Hi...

http://hubpages.com/politics/Gay-Agenda-Threatens-...


carl 2 years ago

I lost my job and ended up on ssi. I stopped paying my bills altogether cuz I couldn't afford to pay them. I figured they are going to screw up my credit anyway and if I can't end up paying them in full eventually why bother? So, I stopped paying. Well, I just got a summons complaint served to me on Friday. I am being sued. I don't own anything except my car which is worth about 4,000.00 I can't afford to file an answer or appearance with the court. So, I guess I will end up with a judgement on my credit report. Even though I am judgement proof it still sucks cuz if I ever turn my situation around this judgement on my credit will be a major obstacle. So, be careful if you stop paying your bills like you are suggesting people do. I couldn't afford to keep up with them so that is why I stopped paying them.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Go to the court judgment and ask who is suing you for validation of the debt. They have to prove that you owe the debt. If that doesn't work, then just tell the court that you are broke, many times the court will be more sympathetic to you than to your creditors. It's not your fault you lost your job.

Also, so what if you have a judgment, just don't use credit anymore. It's a slave trap anyway.


carl 2 years ago

The complaint says it is portfolio recovery associates llc. In cook county in chicago you have to file an answer or appearance and pay a fee. Can I just show up without filing? I don't know. I know who it is suing me. It is a junk debt buyer. I tried calling them and explaining I am collection proof cuz I am on ssi. they said it is in the hands of a lawyer now and it is too late. I tried calling the lawyers office and they don't answer the phones. I want to know if I can just show up on the date it says to file the appearance by?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Is there a date?


Remnant 2 years ago

If you don't go to the hearing, the judge will not know you are on SSI. You will be a no show and he will rule in favor of the collection agency and they will garnish your account and take your money.

The bank has to mark your account to show that it can't be touch


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

I agree with Remnant, the reason I asked if there was a court date is that many times collection agencies send letters that threaten to take people to court and that look official but they aren't. If there is a date go to the court date and ask for validation of the debt. More than likely you'll have to come back and if they can validate the debt (ie show that they own the debt and that you agreed to pay for it) then throw yourself on the mercy of the court. It can't be worse than not showing up at all. The very worst that can happen is that you will have a judgment on your credit and hopefully that won't happen and the judge will be lenient towards you. Make sure to be polite and dress neatly (although not too nice ;)


bambooStrength 2 years ago

Wow! I just had a meltdown, crying about not being able to find a job in my area and my credit card bill piling up. The credit limit was $1,000 and I never maxed out on it or anything but since it's only about $70 left on my credit card, the debt to ratio is high! My credit score is terrible, and I don't even want to get started on medical bills! Your article really made me feel a lot better about everything, thank you so much. I pray I land a job soon!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

"bambooStrength" I feel for you, I've been looking for a job for a long time now, we are living in difficult times. I'm glad I could help in some small way. Read some of the other related articles I have, they might help you as well.


ilambert 2 years ago

Hi I desperately need advise. My husband and I have a house with a mortgage which we have never ever paid late. The house has maybe 20 k equity, if that. We also have a LOT of credit card debt, 15 different cards and debt totaling 76K as of yesterday on the cards. I am no longer able to work due to me becoming 100% disabled in February of this year with a neurological disease, I worked full time until last October and had a new job for just six days in February of this year. Anyway I applied for social security disability insurance and it was granted right away after seeing the SSA doctors but the payments don't start until you are disabled for 6 months. My husband has been disabled with MS since 1989 and on social security disability at just over $1200 a month. I haven't been able to pay most of our credit cards since April, and the only way I was able to keep paying them then was by having yard sales to keep the mortgage and utilities paid and with what little was left I was able to make payments on some of them. I can't pay ANY of them since May of this year. We DONT own a car, we lease a 2012 vehicle. I HAD excellent credit, I never paid minimum on anything and was never, ever late on anything either. We will both be receiving social security disability as of Sept, but I know they cant touch that. Should I send a letter to them all stating the facts and that we can not pay? If I do that can they take my house from me? Our names are also on the mortgage and title to my Mothers house, although we only send in her payments, we have never paid it ourselves, my parents always did. I am so lost and confused as to what I should or should not do. I am getting up to 40 calls a day, I stopped answering them a month ago because even though they all know that I had filed for disability and was waiting for the decision it only would stop them for a day or two. Now I just read the caller ID and don't answer them. Can you please tell me should I send them all letters or does that make this nightmare even worse??? Please answer me ASAP as I am so stressed and this is only making my illness even worse :( By the way I am 57 and my husband is 62. Thank You!!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

First of all relax, everything will be fine. Second, because your name is on your mother's house so that you own two houses I would call a bankruptcy attorney (call a few) and get their advice. Then after you've done that call legal aid because they wont charge you nearly as much if anything. You might have to talk to a few people but it's good to get as much advice as you can get. If you just owned the one house you would be free and clear because they cannot take your home for credit card debt. But, because both are in your name that might make a difference.

Don't pay any of your credit cards any more..just let them go. Concentrate on your mortgage and utilities.

In the meantime, don't answer the phone and if you do answer it by accident just hang up..do not talk to them at all.

It makes a difference as to what state you live in..what state do you live in?


ilambert 2 years ago

We live in North Carolina. The house is actually in the name of my sisters LLC and my husband and I's names but the mortgage is in just my husband and I. My sister has bad credit, 7 years ago when my Dad got cancer in NY and they refused to operate on him my sister found this "investment" property that was in foreclosure. Because our credit was excellent and it was for my parents we got the mortgage for them (they too had bad credit due to very high medical bills). My Dad passed away last year in June so now its just my mother who still pays the mortgage on that house. We just make sure the bank gets it. I am so freaked out, I cant have my 78 year old mother thrown out in the street, my sister was the one that had the down payment- we had no money ourselves, just great credit. Ugh this is so hard, would you send them all a letter just explaining our situation? I made up a letter and made copies of his SSDI and my award letter saying my SSDI doesn't start until September. Its hard to relax when you have to worry about your sister losing her down payment of 20K and your Mother getting kicked out of the home she has been in for the last 8 years. My mother is now 78 and in poor health.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Call some bankruptcy attorneys today..they will talk to you over the phone for free (at least some will) and explain the situation. Listen carefully and make sure that they are giving you good information and not just trying to get you to file. Verify what they tell you on the internet..google what they tell you and see if it is correct. Then decide on a course of action. That additional mortgage may be a good reason to file for bankruptcy, but I'm not sure. Let me know what they tell you.


ilambert 2 years ago

So far not finding any that will give "free" advise. They want you to come in and bring paperwork with you to discuss it further. If I can find any that really are free I'll let you know. I tried for legal aid too and they said they only help with child custody and child support issues in this area :( wont help anyone (even though both are disabled) with financial problems


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Why not quit claim the mortgage into your mother's name so that it's not under your name? It's an easy thing to do.

If you feel comfortable doing so..put send my your phone number and I will call you. I will then edit it out so that it's not on the comments.


ilambert 2 years ago

she has bad credit- you can't quit claim the mortgage, I believe that's the deed, but the mortgage company would want to run credit on her and between her medical bills and my Dads there is no way she could get approved


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

My mother got a mortgage in her name for me and then quit claimed it to me..this was in Oregon and it was a while back. I didn't have to get approved or anything. Maybe things have changed since then.

Also, I was doing some research and in NC a lot depends on how much equity you have. If your equity in both houses is less than $35,000 and you file bankruptcy you might be able to keep both houses.


ilambert 2 years ago

I have never heard of quit claiming a mortgage? You can quit claim the deed to property but the mortgage is guaranteeing a bank or financial institution that you have the ability to pay the loan, they would have to run the other persons credit and approve them to take over the mortgage. You can't just assign your mortgage to a different person without the approval of the bank. The property itself however, you can quit claim the deed into someone else's name.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

I don't know but I did it..but like I said it was about 20 years ago. Did you find someone who could advice you in NC?


ilambert 2 years ago

no one for free, they all said the same thing, bring in paperwork and we can figure out which bankruptcy will be the best for you. I don't want to go bankrupt if I don't have to. I sent all the credit cards a letter and included a copy of my husbands Social Security Disability benefit statement for this year and a copy of my disability award letter which I received about 3 weeks ago. I explained our situation in the letter and asked for compassion- don't know if this will help but its all I could afford to do.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Your situation is difficult because of the 2 houses, the only thing that could save you is if you don't have much equity in them. Barring that I really think that bankruptcy might be your only option. Sorry I couldn't be of more help.


ilambert 2 years ago

our house cant possibly have much equity, maybe 10k, far less than the debt that is owed and hers is actually a trailer that has a house built over it and its on a dirt road, it would be a miracle if that is worth much more than the balance on the mortgage. I am just going to pray that this will resolve itself as I cant handle the stress of the situation on top of being terminally ill


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, that's a good thing from what I read they can't take it if you have less than $35,000, but that is with a bankruptcy. Good luck to you.


ilambert 2 years ago

Thanks


catwoman707 2 years ago

Hi Brie, so glad I found you!

I received a summons from one of the cc companies I stopped paying about 2 years ago, who I owe just over 20k to.

No appearance date though, just states I have 30 days to send a form response.

I have not worked since closing my small boutique, which is part of how I got so far in debt.

It seems the other cc companies have given up but this one being such a large amt will not stop it seems.

I am a co-owner of a house that my ex and I bought but haven't lived there for 8 years, he does and makes the mtg pmts, but house is not worth what is owed, so zero equity there.

I have a car pmt for another year, remarried and he supports me fully.

We are so tight living on his income that we struggle monthly. If that doesn't age me on it's own, now I have to worry about how to deal with this summons.

I also worry that they can garnish my husband's paychecks.

I am afraid if there is a judgement made against me they might take my inheritance away when my mom passes someday. (hopefully not for many years to come)

The inheritance is the only light for my retirement future btw. It sickens me to think of what my mom leaves me getting taken by an old cc debt.

No court date though, so what do I do, ignore it unless they send me an appearance date?

Thanks SO much for any advice.

I live in CA.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

I would ignore it since it doesn't have a date on it. A lot of collectors send out phony summons. If you can avoid being sued for 4 years, you will be free and clear in California.


catwoman707 2 years ago

Wow no kidding?! That's good to know.

So if at some point I did receive one with a court date, I assume I would have to go and throw myself on the mercy of the court?

Thanks so much!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes and call a bankruptcy attorney, in fact call a few of them and get their advice. Just be sure to realize that they want your money so they might not be completely honest, that's why you have to call a few to compare what they tell you to get the truth.

Why don't you sell the house to your ex..to get it off your credit record?


catwoman707 2 years ago

I suppose I am waiting for the value to eventually go up so by the time I am a retiring age I can live in it and have some equity by then.

Another 10-12 years or so, my ex is not in great health and is older than me so he likely won't be around by then either, then I will have a home for the rest of my days.

Hope that doesn't sound bad!


Kay 2 years ago

Boy, do I love your blog, and have a story to back you up. Also would like your opinion on something at the end. But first, here's the scenario.

Started a small business in 2005. It was booming. In late 2007 when the economy started to hit bottom, my business tanked. I had to get through my commitments by racking up $50k in credit cards, and then shut down the business in 2008. Was lucky to transition shortly thereafter to a full-time consulting gig that allowed me to put half my monthly income toward making the monthly payments on my cc debt ($2500 in cc pymts each month, to be exact). At that same time, my now-husband lost his 25-year job in the same industry, and we both limped by. Our life was being held up by toothpicks. And as you'd guess, when my gig ended three years later, I had nothing left. I stopped paying the cc's.

Meanwhile in 2009, my husband was falling behind on his mortgage. The banks would not negotiate. We found out they would not because they COULD NOT... they "did not know who owned our loan." (That's a direct quote.) And they suddenly foreclosed on us four days later. We sued them. The next four years could be turned into a documentary. Ultimately, we caught them in a forgery scheme between the title company and the lender, and finally actually lost the suit this past February in federal court in LA, with the judge saying, "Forgery doesn't matter." (Another direct quote from the judge.) We lost our home to lying banks who got away with it, lost our jobs to a bad economy, and I still have $50K of credit card debt from trying to keep my head above water in a sinking economy. It's fabulous. So, Yes, I agree with you... the banks are in control. The banks have infused themselves into the government. And our judicial system that backs them when push comes to shove makes me want to move out of the country. Rant over.

With that said, what should I do now? I never declared BK because we were in the lawsuit. The cc companies have basically stopped calling and sending stuff. I couldn't pay the .10 on the dollar when they were offering it if I wanted to. Now I can. But does it matter at this point? What is the best next step? It's been around 3 years since I stopped paying on them.

Thanks for the great blog.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Kay, what state do you live in?


Kay 2 years ago

California


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes, I got it. The reason I ask is California is a 4 year state. If you have not paid your CC bills in 4 years after the 4 years you cannot be sued for payment! You only have one more year, therefore, I would lay low and wait it out and under no circumstances talk to a creditor on the phone. If you are summoned to court however, you should go and make them verify the debt. If they cannot you are off the hook. Read all my articles on Credit Card debt and Bankruptcy listed below this article.


Kay 2 years ago

Great! So will my credit start improving again after four years then? I will Definitely read all your articles.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

No, it takes 7 years before your credit report will improve.


Kay 2 years ago

Ok got it. Can't say thanks enough.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Please share this article on your twitter and facebook, thanks.


Shiraz 2 years ago

I liked your article a lot. Very informative, courageous, and bold. I'm from Iran and come to US in 2009 on student visa. I did my graduation and couldn't find job for a year and left on march2014. I filed my tax return in Jan 2014 on my total income of $2800 for tax period 2013. It were IT training stipends that I received from an employer. In that bad condition I left US in march2014 with credit debit from four credit cards with their crd limit, $500, $2500,$3000,$6000, while living in NJ in the company's guest house. I used to pay when I had money and my score was 764. I got the visit visa I came back in July & fall in love with a girl. Am getting married. I still don't have enough money to pay crd bill as the debit shot to $13000 now and my cards are all blocked as I stopped paying from april2014 because I was in my home country since March 2014. I also went to ER and the doctor sent me a bill of $1600 through collection company. I checked the letters from the guest house in NJ, there is no court letter.

Ms Brie, please give me sage advise what should I do? Will the govt arrest me? My idea is once I get the work authorization/GC, after marriage, I'll get job easily and will be able to pay almost all in April/May 2015. Please advise as I'm in fix now, will the four banks & the doctor will go in the court? Will I be arrested? Thank you so much.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 2 years ago from Manhattan Author

Shiraz, I have no idea. Since you are not a citizen I don't know what the laws are and how they will affect you. Sorry but maybe you should be talking to an immigration attorney because it could be that your debt could affect your stay here.


Shiraz 2 years ago

Thank you Ms. Brie.


catwoman707 23 months ago

Hi Brie,

Approx 6 weeks ago I asked for your advice, the latest is I have received a form from the same attorney group that looks like a request for a clerk's judgement request. (application for entry of default)

They are not requesting I go to court, but is there some chance that the clerk will enter a judgement of default on behalf of the plaintiff?

This is the same one, I owe just over 20,000 to.

Thanks SO much for your guidance/advice!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 23 months ago from Manhattan Author

Unless there is a court date, rip it up and throw it away. They can't do anything without a court date. They lie all the time.


YANKEE00TRADER 23 months ago

Today I had a interview with a bankruptcy attorney.. Believe it or not the attorney told me the exact same thing Brie told people what to do..

I guess great minds do think alike.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 23 months ago from Manhattan Author

Yep! Thanks for the confirmation "Yankeeootrader".


Frank 22 months ago

After reading your article I decided to try it out..

I went to a Bankruptcy Attorney and I did everything I was asked to do. Which was supply two years of bank deposits.. Then 12 months of usage statements for each credit card.

Then I was told that I would have to go through the usage statements for each credit card and come up with a timeline of payment history for each credit card.

My question to the attorney was.. I didn't ask for the usage statement you did.. Now you want me to come up with a payment time line for you.. What did I hire an attorney for if I have to do all the work myself?

Then this attorney informed me that I would probably have to make credit card payments or risk creditors crying fraud in bankruptcy.

All the above aggravation from a attorney that also tells me I'm judgment proof simple because I'm collecting Social Security and Veterans Benefits and own no home or property.

So the moral to this story is quite simple.. If your truly judgment proof then leave it alone.. To hire a attorney can and might cause you more problems..

I have since fired the attorney and going with my judgment proof status.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 22 months ago from Manhattan Author

Good for you..most attorneys are worthless and only looking to steal more money from you!

I can't tell you how many people have taken my advice and NOTHING has happened to them! If you are judgment proof, you are home free!


Frank 22 months ago

Brie.. I am 100% Judgment Proof..

Here's something else you should check out..

http://www.cardhub.com/edu/credit-card-bill-of-rig...

Check out the credit card eligibility section..

As you will see credit card companies are not supposed to issue anyone a credit card if their income don't or can't support the debt..

Which means they are issuing credit cards strictly by credit scores not on the persons ability to carry the debt..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 22 months ago from Manhattan Author

Credit card companies will give anyone credit because it doesn't cost them anything..they get interest on thin air!


F rank 21 months ago

Brie.. I fully understand that credit card companies will give anyone credit.

However just because they do that don't make it right or ok to take advantage of people or the system.

The only thing credit card companies are creating because of their greed is an environment of people being forced into bankruptcy or not paying their debt for whatever reasons.

It used to be that you didn't get credit if your income couldn't support the debt.

This is where the government should step in and do some kind of regulation on credit card companies on how they issue credit cards and income guidelines for credit card companies to follow before they do issue credit cards.

Your information is great for people who can't pay their credit card debt and attorneys fees.

However your information don't fix the problem that needs to be fixed and that problem is credit card companies issuing credit cards strictly on a persons credit score not on their income and the ability to carry the debt.

This conversation could go on forever and there is a whole lot of people with credit card debt that have no business having credit cards.. Simply because they don't have the income to support the debt and the credit card companies should be held responsible for the problems they cause.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

I agree but good luck with that because the banks benefit from this corrupt system and they have bought the politicians.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie check this out...

Couple awarded $1 million from 'unrelenting' Bank of America

Published December 13, 2014

A Florida couple receiving “unrelenting” phone calls from Bank of America was awarded more than $1 million from a federal judge.

Nelson and Joyce Coniglio received 700 collection calls from the bank over a four year period, the New York Post reports.

“They treated us very badly,” Nelson told the Post. “No two ways about it.”

The couple said the bank badgered them after they had gotten behind on their house payments. Even after the Coniglios hired an attorney, the calls kept coming in.

Senior Vice President Dan Frahm said the calls were not to collect debt, but help the couple avoid foreclosure.

The two sued under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and was awarded the large sum. The damages were tripled from the bank’s $500 per call.

“The borrowers, the people who own those phones, you do have a right to privacy. And when they say to stop, you have to stop,” the Coniglios’ attorney, David Mitchell, told the paper.

Bank of America asked the court to reconsider the award, but the judge rejected the appeal.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

I would have given them a million dollars!


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. I have never heard of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act..

Would be a great idea for you to inform people on how it works..


Frank 21 months ago

Brie. I just read up on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

It deals mainly with cellphones...

Debt collectors for the most part have to have your permission to contact you on your cell phone.

Now any person who gives a debt collector permission to contact them on their cell phone has to be a little goofy to say the least.

Debt collectors should know better than robot call a cell phone number. Since the money damage is $500.00 per call and tripled in some instances..

This should be good news for people who can't pay their bills and have cell phones..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

All you have to do is tell debt collectors to NOT contact you via the phone and if they do they are risking getting sued.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie...Tell collectors not to contact you by phone.. Don't you have to send them a certified letter return receipt requested in order to make them stop calling you via telephone?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

No..but it doesn't hurt either.


FRANK 21 months ago

Brie.. I'm really glad I found this website.. I'm learning a lot from you...


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. It seems like consumers have quite a bit of rights as far as bill collectors go..

However every time a consumers debt may get resold to another debt collector the process of getting them to stop bothering you starts over again..

So in reality the consumer is in a never ending merry go round.

Which may be a good thing simple because every time the debt gets resold usually some information about the debt gets lost or they want to settle for less and less...


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Just don't answer the phone when they call.


FRANK 21 months ago

What Collection Agents Don’t Want You to Know

Nowhere is the notion of “Knowledge is Power” more important than in the realm of debt collection. The less knowledgeable someone is about a consumer’s rights under the law, the more assertive, persistent and annoying debt collectors can coax a delinquent borrower to repay an overdue obligation.

In this case, a little knowledge can go a long way. If you are being hounded by a collection agency, the most important thing you need to acquire is a thorough understanding of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and its companion legislation, the Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA).

Both statutes are part of the federal Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA). These laws outline the required and prohibited behavior of debt collectors, and they also stipulate the rights and remedies afforded to consumers who are the subjects of their collection efforts. In short, the laws protect consumers – and these are rights that collection agents prefer you not know.

In addition to a basic knowledge of the available legal protections available, it is also a good idea to understand how the collection industry operates, so that if you are in communication with a debt collector, you will be more able to separate their tactics from the truth.

Rule 1: You Don’t Have to Talk

The first thing debt collectors don’t want you to know is that there is no law that requires that you work with them at all, let alone even talk to them. They certainly don’t want you to know that if you send a cease and desist letter – one that says you no longer wish to be contacted about the debt – that collection agency must stop all of the calls and letters immediately. If they fail to stop, they will violate the FDCPA.

Rule 2: No Big Early Payments Required

Because most collection agencies work on a commission basis, it is not unusual for collectors to tell a debtor that he or she has to pay a large down payment on the owed amount. They may say that a hefty initial sum is required in order to prevent collection fees from growing, or that it is necessary to begin the process of eliminating the debt from their records.

What they don’t want you to know is that there is no such requirement. They merely want to get as much money upfront as possible to inflate their commission.

Rule 3: No Deadlines

Debt collectors also may tell you that there is a deadline for payment and threaten you with dire repercussions if the debt is not paid within the prescribed time frame. What they don’t want you to know is that there is no such thing as a deadline. It is a complete fabrication, one designed to get your to repay your debt as quickly as possible, because they know that the longer they have to wait to get paid, the less likely it is to ever happen.

Rule 4: Your Credit is Already Damaged

Collectors often exaggerate the consequences of delinquency and non-payment. Threats are illegal under the FDCPA, but suggestions that your credit score will suffer, or that your possessions may be seized, are simply scare tactics with nothing to back them up.

In fact, if your debt is in collection, your credit score has already been damaged and the potential loss of your possessions is pure fiction. What they don’t want you to know is that all they can really do is ask, cajole, and demand that you pay. The rest is bluster.

Rule 5: Don’t Give Up Personal Information

Sometimes, debt collectors will ask you for information – your bank account number, your Social Security number, where you work, references from friends and colleagues. Why? To put together a “financial statement” they need to work out any repayment plan.

They don’t want you to know that they are merely fishing for information that will help them find you if you move, sue you if you don’t repay, or get into your bank records. There is no financial statement, and you should never give out proprietary information to anyone – ever.

Rule 6: Collectors Can’t Cross State Lines

Debt collectors also don’t want you to know that they cannot pursue you across state borders to enforce a judgment levied against you by a creditor who sued you for non-payment and won. Transferring the judgment to another state is time-consuming and expensive and not likely to occur very often.

Rule 7: There Are Limits to Garnishment

Debt collectors don’t want you to know that there are limits on the amounts they can legally garnish from certain portions of your income, like salary, social security or pensions. For example, the maximum amount that can be taken from a paycheck is the lesser of 25 percent of your disposable earnings or the amount by which your wages exceed 30 times the federal minimum wage.

You can also file for complete exemption from wage garnishment, if you can verify that it will cause you or your family financial hardship to have any monies withheld.

Rule 8: There Are Options for Student Loan Debt

Debt collectors don’t want you to know that if you have student loan debt, while it still must be paid, you have the right, under the 1992 Higher Education Act, to set up a short-term payment schedule with the collection agency, requiring only “reasonable and affordable payments” – sometimes as little as $10 per month.

Successful completion of the student loan rehabilitation program (making nine out of 10 payments on time) takes the debt out of the collector’s portfolio and sends it back to the Department of Education. The collection agency loses its various commissions and bounties, and your loan is now being held under more favorable conditions.

Remember, high pressure tactics by bill collectors are used solely to scare or bully you into paying them. While it is still your responsibility to square all your valid and legitimate debts, you don’t have to endure illegal, harassing or irritating activities.

Arming yourself with the right knowledge can help free you from the frustration – and empower you


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks for the information Frank..so true!


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. Your very welcome.. Since I found your blog I have been really googling and learning and posting what I learned on your blog in hopes of helping others.. Merry Christmas....


ilambert 21 months ago

Brie, Its been awhile since I have written. I sent all of the creditors a letter back in July explaining that I am now disabled as well as my husband who has been disabled since 1989. I included the approval letter from Social Security Administration showing that my total income will be a pittance now as well as my husbands which has always been very little since 1989. I included a copy of his annual award as well. I requested they stop calling me and explained that sometimes very bad things happen to good people and I was sorry but there is nothing I can do to pay them anything and to please stop calling us. BTW my credit was perfect, I never ever had made a late payment or a minimum payment in all the years I had credit. Well that cut the calls down from 40+ a day to only 2-3 which I never answered anymore. Fast forward the last payment I had made to anyone was in May 2014. This past Tuesday the day before Christmas eve I get a knock on the door and its the Sherriff. He is delivering a Civil Summons from Citibank for Sears MC. It has been filed in the county where I live and it say I have to respond within 30 days or they will apply to the court for the relief demanded in the complaint. I am scared to death- the sherriff said here in NC I better respond or they will take everything I have- he said if I had a purebred dog they would even take the dog! I don't but he was looking around my living room and telling me that's a nice picture on the wall, if you want to keep it you BETTER respond or it will all be gone!! OMG What am I supposed to do? There is no "court date" It says I have to file a response to the summons either by delivering it to the supreme court clerk or mailing it to their attorney. Dear God if I go bankrupt I know they are going to take my house!! What do I do? I cant find any attorney to advise me for free here in NC and I have barely enough money to keep the mortgage paid and the lights on. Help!!


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

ilambert I am so sorry to hear this but go to the court and file a response. Stick to you guns, bring your financial information including some documentation on how much your house is worth and what you owe. Hopefully, the courts will side with you. In any case you are better off with the courts than with the banks. Let me know what happens.


ilambert 21 months ago

Brie, How would I get documentation on what my house is worth? You certainly can't go by what a real estate tells you or Zillow. Their estimate is always far higher than the actual worth. Plus we are in a log cabin which is always worth even less than they estimate, and we are in the only one in the area too so there are no comps. Would it hurt or help to send the same letter to the attorney's office that I had sent to all of the creditors back in July? I doubt the court clerk would care. What a crappy way to end a very hard year. I guess I am going to have to try and scrape together the money to go bankrupt :(


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

The only way to tell how much a home is worth is through comparables but it sounds like finding comparables will be difficult. You might have to file bankruptcy due to the asset of your home but you really need a good attorney to advise you. There must be someone in your area..do you belong to a church? Maybe they could advise you?


FRANK 21 months ago

HOW CREDITORS FIND OUT ABOUT YOU..

When a creditor gets a money judgment against you, if often wants to find out what income and assets you have so that it can start collecting on the judgment (called enforcing the judgment). What procedures judgment creditors can use to get information from you vary by state, but the most common are: debtor’s examinations, written questions, and scheduling a court hearing where the creditor questions you under penalty of perjury about your income and property.

Once the judgment creditor has information about the property you own and the money you earn, it can begin collection procedures. (To learn about the different methods judgment creditors can use to collect, see How Creditors Enforce Judgments.)

Debtor’s Examinations

Most states let a judgment creditor question you about your property and finances, in a procedure called a “debtor’s examination.” Basically, the judgment creditor is looking for money or property that can be legally taken to pay the debt. High on the list of property the creditor looks for are deposit accounts (such as savings, checking, certificate of deposit, and money market), tax refunds due, and other easy cash. Don’t lie. Your statements are ordinarily given under penalty of perjury.

Written Questions

In some states, a judgment creditor sends you a form and asks you to fill it out, listing your employer’s name and address, your assets, and other financial information. You must do this under penalty of perjury. If you don’t comply or the judgment creditor believes you’re lying or not disclosing all relevant information, the judgment creditor can ask the court to issue an order requiring you to come to court and answer the questions.

Court Appearance

In other states, the creditor serves you with a document ordering you to show up in court and bring certain financial documents, such as bank statements or pay stubs. You may be sent the questions and given a chance to answer them in writing first. If you receive an order to appear in court and you don’t show up, the court can declare you in contempt and issue a warrant for your arrest.

Liens and Warrants

In a few states, if the judge issues an order for you to come to court, serving that order on you creates a lien on your personal property. The lien may make it difficult for you to sell the property without first paying the judgment. Also, in some states if the judgment creditor believes you are about to leave the state or conceal your property to avoid paying the judgment, the creditor can ask the judge to issue a warrant for your immediate arrest. This is quite drastic, but it’s been known to happen when a lot of money is owed.

What to Do If You Can’t Make the Court Hearing

If you receive an order to appear but can’t take the time off from work or otherwise can’t make it, call the judgment creditor or the lawyer and explain your situation. Explain that you’re willing to answer questions over the phone or even in person, but at another time. If the creditor thinks you’re telling the truth and hasn’t already sent you a form about your finances and property, the creditor may take the information over the telephone.

If the judgment creditor agrees to change the date or to let you answer the questions over the phone, ask for a letter to you and the court verifying that you need not appear at the hearing. If the creditor won’t write the letter, write your own letter confirming your conversation. Send it to the creditor and to the court.

Attending the Court Hearing

If you can attend the hearing, or you reschedule it to a convenient time, do not take any money or expensive personal items with you. The judgment creditor can ask you to empty your pockets or purse and ask the court to order you to turn over any nonexempt money or valuable personal property in your possession, such as a college ring or leather jacket.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Great information Frank, thanks.


ilambert 21 months ago

Brie sad to say we stopped going to church a couple of years ago when we no longer had the money to make the collection donation every Sunday. The information that Frank posted is not relevant to our situation (I don't think?) as we are both disabled and neither of us works, we are both on social security now, mine is disability and his was just switched from disability to regular social security as he turned 62. I did a lot of research and from what I had read, they can't force the sale of our home or touch our minimal income as we are both disabled. We no longer own a car, we have a leased vehicle but the lease on that is up in May. We literally sold anything we had of value to keep paying the credit cards over the last two years. Now there is nothing left to sell. We even sold our bedroom set back in April to make the May payments. I don't know if there is such a thing as forcing the sale on a home that has never been paid late? I still have yet to find any attorney that will do a free consultation and it will be several months at least before I can raise the money to hire anyone for a bankruptcy. I am at a loss as to what I could do. There is no hearing scheduled yet that I am aware of, just this civil summons to respond by mail.....its not at the stage that is mentioned above yet, but from the sounds of what Frank wrote I could lose my house too.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

If I were you, Ilambert, I would just go to the hearing whenever they do schedule it and tell them exactly what you have told me. I would trust that the court will do right by you more than an attorney. Try to not be afraid and make your case. I think it will be in your favor. Although I understand your fears, just be brave and walk through it.

I wish I could offer more help but my knowledge is for people who have no assets..still I think you will be fine.


Frank 21 months ago

People on exempt income such as Social Security, Veterans Benefits, SSI,Social Security Disability, Welfare and more.

Plus have no assets are 100% Judgment Proof..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

She has a house..Frank.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie... Even if she has a house it might be exempt.. Or they could put a lien on the house..

Everything I have read or googled doesn't even talk about people forced to sell anything to pay off creditors..

Except in bankruptcies then they can force people to sell valuables..

That's why when you file bankruptcy the attorney tells you to list everything you own of value when you hire him or her.. Once it's on record what you have that can possible be sold the bankruptcy court can move to sell the stuff to pay off the creditors..

These people do need to talk to a honest attorney to advise them what to do or not do..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

That's why I don't think she should file bankruptcy but instead just go to court.


FRANK 21 months ago

Brie... Here's Legal Aid in North Carolina...

http://www.usattorneylegalservices.com/free-legal-...

They just might help the above people ...


ilambert 21 months ago

I contacted the Wilmington NC Legal Aid office and was told they will not help anyone with any financial problem even if they are disabled. They told me they only have enough staff to handle child support and child custody issues-nothing else


FRANK 21 months ago

Can Creditors Take My Benefits and Assets?

I’VE BEEN SUED AND THERE IS A JUDGMENT AGAINST ME. CAN MY CREDITORS TAKE MY PAYCHECKS?

Yes. If you owe money and the creditor(s) have received permission from the court, they can arrange to have your paychecks “garnished”, meaning they can have up to 10% of your paycheck removed and sent to your creditor(s) before it gets to you.

Note: If you already have child-support, alimony or support payments taken out of your paycheck, the total amount garnished cannot exceed 25%.

CAN MY CREDITORS TAKE MY SOCIAL SECURITY OR SSI CHECKS?

No. Federal law prohibits creditors from taking or garnishing these benefits. If your only source of income is a combination of SSI or Social Security, you are “judgment-proof,” meaning they cannot collect any of your income.

Note: The exception to this rule is the garnishment of Social Security (but not SSI) for child support and federal garnishments of tax returns.

CAN MY CREDITORS TAKE MY VETERAN’S BENEFITS?

No. Veteran’s benefits (including Survivor’s Benefits if your spouse was a veteran) are exempt from attachment or garnishment by creditors.

I RECEIVE UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS. CAN MY CREDITORS GARNISH THEM?

No. Unemployment benefits are not subject to garnishment by creditors.

WHAT ABOUT MY PUBLIC ASSISTANCE BENEFITS, DISABILITY BENEFITS, WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BENEFITS OR PUBLIC AND PRIVATE PENSIONS?

No. None of these benefits is subject to garnishment by creditors.

I OWN MY HOME. CAN IT BE SEIZED BY A CREDITOR TRYING TO COLLECT ON A JUDGMENT AGAINST ME?

No, a creditor cannot seize or forcibly sell your home. However if you own real estate and a judgment is outstanding against you, your creditor can get a “lien” on your house, which means if you sell it the unpaid debt will be taken out of the proceeds. If you acquired your home after the judgment against you was issued, your home is not subject to a lien.

ARE THERE EXCEPTIONS TO THESE RULES?

The exceptions to the above rules are garnishment for purposes of child support and owed federal taxes. There are also some exceptions for student loans. If you owe child support, federal taxes, or student loans, you should contact an attorney to find out how these debts may affect your benefits.

© MFY Legal Services, Inc. 2008. All rights reserved.

I RECEIVED A PACKET IN THE MAIL FROM THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT AND THE FORMS ASK LOTS OF QUESTIONS ABOUT MY SOURCES OF INCOME AND MY ASSETS. DO I HAVE TO FILL THIS OUT?

YES. These documents allow the court to determine what income and assets your creditors can seize or garnish. These documents are not optional. If you ignore them and fail to fill them out and mail them back (you should send them via Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested), you may be found in contempt of court and subject to fine and even jail time. It is important to fill these forms out completely and accurately and mail them back promptly as instructed.

HOW LONG WILL A JUDGMENT AGAINST ME BE IN EFFECT?

Generally the length a judgment is collectable is twenty years, after which the court presumes that the debt has been paid, even if it hasn’t.

Note: Creditors are entitled to charge 9% annual interest on unpaid judgments, so the amount you owe will go up every year it remains unpaid


Frank 21 months ago

Debt Collectors calling your Cell? TCPA Telephone Consumer Protection Act

A lot of people think it OK for a bill collector to call you on your cell. Well, a lot of times it’s not.

We interviewed attorney Patrick Lester attorney licensed in California, New York and Missouri who explains why bill collector calls you get on your cell phone may be illegal.

Q. What is this TCPA law? Is it new?

PL Few people including attorneys know about the TCPA The Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA) was passed by the United States Congress in 1991. The current version is at 47 U.S.C. 227.

The focus is in this section of the act 47 USC § 227(b)(1) Restrictions on use of automated telephone equipment.

It shall be unlawful for any person within the United States – (A) to make any call (other than a call made for emergency purposes or made with the prior express consent of the called party)

using any automatic telephone dialing system or an artificial or prerecorded voice -

(iii) to any … cellular telephone service.

The fines are FOR EACH CALL

47 USC § 227(b)(1) (B) an action to recover for actual monetary loss from such a violation, or to receive

$500 in damages for each such violation, whichever is greater, If the court finds that the defendant willfully or knowingly violated this subsection or the regulations prescribed under this subsection, the court may, in its discretion,

increase the amount of the award to an amount equal to not more than 3 times ($1,500) the amount available under subparagraph (B) of this paragraph.

But few people even most lawyers don’t know about it. Regardless it’s a powerful weapon that can be used in state or federal court against those annoying, intrusive debt collection calls on your cell phone.

Congress passed the TCPA to to govern telemarketing. It covers many things including faxes but we’re just going to cover the rule against these people calling your cell phone right now.

The law says in a nutshell companies including debt collectors and your creditors can’t call your cell with an auto dialer and if they do its $500- $1500 .. And that’s for each call!

PL But they’re 2 small catch’s

1. The calls have to be from an auto dialer I’ll talk about that more in a minute and

here’s the important one

2. You can’t have given them express consent.

How do they get express consent?

PL: Here’s how. Often when you got the credit card or bought the thing they are now going after you to pay for, you put a phone number on the application. If you put your cell number, the one they’re calling you on, then you gave express consent and they are not breaking the law by calling you.

Q. What about if you call them back with your cell?

PL. No that’s not prior express permission.

Q. Lets get back to the term you used automatic dialing system. What’s that and how do you know they’re calling you with one of those?

PL Short answer you don’t absolutely know. But most of the industry uses them and usually you can tell when you phone rings and you answer it and there’s a short delay before your hear anything, that probably an automatic telephone dialing system or auto dialer, for short. Odds are if you are getting one of these calls on your cell it’s a company using an auto dialer.

Q. Well I know lots of consumers who get debt collector calls at home are those all these $500-$1500 calls?

PL No what we are talking about is calls to a cell phone. If the call at home is a cell phone that’s the violation. If it’s a land line, while it may also violate the federal law, it doesn’t violate this one.

Other laws like the FDCPA or Fair Debt Collection practices Act apply to what most people would consider harassing calls to land lines by debt collectors.

But here’s the great part of this law we’re talking about now, TCPA.

It doesn’t have to be harassing. Any call they make is against the law. It can be civil and friendly and even helpful, but if its to your cell phone and you didn’t give express written consent for them to call that cell phone they are liable end of story and secondly it doesn’t even have to be a debt collector. It can be the creditor that you owed the money to, to begin with.

All they have to do is call your cell with an auto dialer.

Q. Well how would these people get my cell number?

PL There are a lot of places on the internet where you can look up someone’s cell phone number if you have their name and general area where they live

But more commonly the way they get your cell number is when you call them back on your cell phone when you get a dunning letter or a collection call at home or work and they then “trap” your cell phone number. After that they’ve got it.

Q. So what should they do?

PL A couple of things.

1. Save the record of the phone number that called to your cell. If you know how you should download the messages with a date and time stamp to a digital recorder or computer.

2. Also if they leave messages you need to save those for 2 reasons

- They show obviously who made the call and when

-Sometimes the messages themselves will violate other laws against harassing phone calls.

3. Save your cell phone bills that have the numbers of the company that called your cell.

4. Finally call a lawyer who handles these type of cases.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. Starting October 14, 2014...In New York State

The New York State court system adopted rules on Tuesday to protect people in debt and make it harder for debt collection companies to win default judgments.

The rules, first proposed by Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman in April, will go into effect on Oct. 1.

Each year, more than 100,000 credit card collection cases are brought against individuals in New York courts, and Judge Lippman said the new rules would help combat deceptive collection practices.

“While creditors have every right to collect what is legally owed to them, the judiciary has an obligation to prevent inequitable debt collection practices in the courts,” Judge Lippman said in a statement.

The majority of cases before the courts involve third-party debt buyers who purchase large portfolios of consumer debt — often from unpaid credit card and auto loans. The debt buyers pay pennies on the dollar for the debt and then go to court to force repayment.

Continue reading the main story

Related Coverage

Inside the Dark, Lucrative World of Consumer Debt CollectionAUG. 14, 2014

New rules issued by Jonathan Lippman, chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, will go into effect on June 15.

Top State Judge Tightens Rules on Debt CollectionAPRIL 30, 2014

Your Money Adviser: Dealing With Debt CollectorsMAY 20, 2014

However, many outside debt buyers have come under criticism from consumer advocates for their aggressive legal tactics.

Often they file multiple suits with boilerplate language and a spreadsheet of the debts without proper documentation of each debt’s origin, history and amount.

Since the debts are often many years old, it is hard for consumers to determine if the claims are even legitimate.

But the consequences of failing to pay can be dire. The vast majority of cases involve only a few thousand dollars, but not paying can result in ruined credit ratings and garnished wages.

Under the new rules, creditors will be required to submit affidavits containing “detailed proof in support of default judgment applications, including the validity of the debt at issue and the chain of ownership for that debt.”

When a legal action is prompted by a third party debt buyer, “affidavits will be required from the original creditor and all intervening debt buyers, and will have to be executed by individuals having personal knowledge.”

The court will also require copies of key documents to be submitted, “including the party’s credit agreement, the most recent monthly statement and other documents that serve to identify the correct defendant.”

To keep collectors from going after debt that has expired, lawyers for creditors must submit an affirmation that the statute of limitations has not expired.

Finally, to ensure that consumers know when legal action is being initiated against them, debt collectors “must provide the court with an additional notice of the lawsuit to be mailed by the court to the defendant at the address where process was served."

"No default judgment will be entered if that notice is returned to the court as undeliverable.”


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Wow, that's one thing that NY has done right!


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. Looks like that Jonathan Lippman, chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals is more interested in looking out for consumers then debt collectors..

It was about time New York State takes a stand that helps consumers from debt collectors and there evil ways..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Actually, a lot of courts do side with creditors..in fact I think they are much more sympathetic than most people think.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. How was the Italian Festival this year in Little Italy?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

I didn't go..I had to work ;(


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. I do try to get to New York City for the Italian Festival every year but sometimes I do not get there..

I really like China Town and all those little stores..

Great time in New York City but I sure don't want to live there..

Way to many people and every body is in a hurry..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

I like a lot of people..the saddest sight to me is a street corner with no people...just me I guess.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie.. I received a very interesting E-mail about your blog from a attorney in Rochester, N.Y. . I would like you to read it but I don't want to post it here.. How can I send it to you?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Go to my profile page; you can send a private email from there.


Frank 21 months ago

Brie... Guess what? I can't find your profile page.. Where did you hide it?? Maybe I need to hire Fox News to find it... Ha Ha ..

Have a great New Years Eve and stay safe..

Me I'm staying home and watching the ball drop on television.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Go up to the top of the page..near my picture is my name, click on that and I think that will bring you to a place where you can email me a message. Let me know if that works. I wish HP would make it easier.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Go up to the top of the page..near my picture is my name, click on that and I think that will bring you to a place where you can email me a message. Let me know if that works. I wish HP would make it easier.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 21 months ago from Manhattan Author

Ok, I sent you an email...let me know if you get it.


FRANK 19 months ago

Threatening Legal Action – The Collection Agencies Favorite Threat

Fear is the main tool bill collectors try to use when attempting to motivating people to pay debts. They are extremely quick to ‘suggest’ that they will litigate and start a wage garnishee or lien a property because if the person believes them it can save them a lot of time in They are trained to sound believable, the truth of the matter is that most collectors make $12/hr. and know very little about the actual process of pursuing legal action for recovery of debt.

An important FACT that the collectors never tell anyone about is that the debt needs to be of high enough value where their commission (anywhere from 5 – 50% of the debt recovered) will warrant the cost the agency has to spend on legal costs.

Collectors will almost always say that “the costs are added to the judgment,” however only a percentage of costs are recoverable when someone obtains a judgment. The agency is actually making an investment ($100 – $3,500+) whenever suing someone on behalf of a creditor. They run the risk of getting an unrecoverable judgment. Considering how greedy and cheap collection agencies are known to be, it is safe to say this is a cost they would rather not waste money on.

The average debt that a collection agency could sue someone for is usually $5,000+ and the agency would have to have at least an 60% probability of recovering funds after judgment.

How does the collection agency estimate the chances of recovering a debt after judgment?

1. The province in Canada that you live in matters tremendously.

British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario are the primary provinces collection agencies sue people on behalf of creditors.

The reason being that property values are higher and secure employment is more common.

2. Property Owners

If you own a property (in one of the above provinces) you are far more likely to be sued by a collection agency than someone who rents. Most people do not fall behind on their mortgage payments and will eventually sell a home at a profit.

A judgment and property lien could be possible, especially if their is available equity and the debt is more than $5,000 to the creditor.

3. Secure Employment

Government employee’s of any type, oil workers, people employed in the financial industry are more likely to be sued by a collection agency on behalf of a creditor.

If you’ve had a secure job for the past 4-10 years and it is unlikely you would leave anytime soon, it is possible that the agency could attempt to obtain a judgment to garnishee wages for recovery of the debt.

People employed in retail jobs, or under 25 working any job they could easily leave are far less likely to be sued. This is due to the fact that a garnishee order is useless if the person holding a judgment doesn’t know where the debtor works.

The main purpose of this article is to clarify for people being called by collection agencies about $200 phone bills or a $2000 credit card debt that it is very unlikely a collection agency would go to the expense (approximately $600 – $3,000+ in Supreme Court – depending on the province) and risk losing money on suing somebody that does not have the ability to repay their debt.

We believe this is an unnecessary scare tactic that collection agencies use far too often and want to ensure people are properly informed of the actual chances of this happening. Their are thousands of accounts in collection agencies that remain unpaid, they could not possibly sue every account or even as many as 5% due to the high costs and risk involved of not recovering money.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 19 months ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks Frank for this important information.


FRANK 19 months ago

Brie.. Since I discovered this website I have learned a few things from your website and some things I found on my own also.. However if I find things that might be helpful to others I will post them on your website.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 19 months ago from Manhattan Author

Great Frank, new info is always welcome.


ilambert 18 months ago

Hello Brie, I wanted to update you as to what is happening. Three of the Chase accounts were written off and I received 1099's for them in December of last year. Two have gone forward as far as summons Citibank and Synchrony Bank. I responded and filed the response to both with the county court. One apparently has gotten a judgment despite my response about both of us, my husband and I, now being 100% disabled, on social security disability and no way to possibly pay them. I received a letter in the mail from the Citibank attorney that despite my response to them as well they are going to court to do the same on March 16th at 9:30am. I will be going but it doesn't appear to do any good, they are going to come after me guns a blazing anyway. Mind you last July 28th I had sent ALL of my creditors a letter explaining the situation and the medical prognosis that I have gotten from the Social Security disability doctors that I was sent to. There is no such thing as compassion in this world anymore. I'll let you know what happens but it doesn't appear very good at this point.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 18 months ago from Manhattan Author

"ilambert", I am so sorry to hear this..who knows maybe the court will side with you..it has happened before.


FRANK 18 months ago

Brie.. Anyone can get a judgment on someone but collecting on that judgment is a different matter.

People collecting Social Security, Military Benefits, Unemployment Checks, Welfare and more there income is exempt from debt collectors.

If you own a home they can not force you to sell your home but they can put a lien on your home.. Meaning if you sell the home they get paid.

If you own any kind of valuable property they more than likely can seize it and sell it to pay off the debt.

In my opinion it's much better to own nothing then they can't get nothing and that makes you 100% judgment proof.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 18 months ago from Manhattan Author

I agree, Frank. When not owning anything is impossible then you should at least put it in another person's name.


Frank 18 months ago

Brie.. I don't think people fully understand the pitfalls of credit cards until they find themselves in a mess..

Most people want to own there own home but that is one big problem if you have credit card problems. They can put a lien on your house to get paid

Most people want to own very nice things but again that's a big problem if you have credit card problems. They can come in and sell your nice things to pay the debt.

Most people have jobs and that's a big problem if you have credit card problems. They can put a garnishee on your paycheck if your not paying.


Frank 18 months ago

What are the odds of being sued by a debt collector?

Always, when negotiating with creditors and debt collectors, one needs to assess the risk that they will be sued if negotiating efforts fail. You need to assess your risk of being sued before you decide to stop paying a creditor or delay paying a creditor or collector in hopes of getting them to agree to a reduced settlement or alternate repayment plan. Use the following facts to help you assess your risk of being sued:

Lawsuits are a very expensive, slow process. The court system is so clogged that it takes months for a case to be heard (the average is 16 months). In addition, an out-of-state creditor is required to sue you in a court in your home state. This means he must hire a local collection attorney who expects payment regardless of whether or not he ever collects from you. The creditor risks not recovering the $2,000 or more he pays the collection attorney to sue you. Your creditor will chose a vast array of other options before he will resort to a lawsuit, so most threats of suit can be safely ignored. For example, if the debt is secured, your creditor will generally repossess the collateral. If it is unsecured, he might offer you a reduced settlement or new payment arrangement to get you paying again.

Big creditors don't sue over small debts. The collection letter claims that you will be sued for the $284.37 you owe the XYZ Credit Card Company, but the odds that they will sue are extremely small. A creditor isn't going to risk not recovering the $2,000 it must pay to a collection attorney to sue you over a $285.00 debt. That's why credit card companies (and other big unsecured creditors) write off millions each year in uncollectible debt and simply pass on the cost of this to consumers in the form of higher interest rates and fees.

A general rule of thumb is that if you owe less than $1,000 the odds that you will be sued are very low, particularly if you're creditor is a large corporation. In fact, many big creditors won't sue over amounts much larger than $1,000. When you consider that the time, effort, and manpower involved in suing someone often exceeds $5,000, then you understand why many of them won't sue.

Of course, on the other hand, if you owe the locally-owned small business down the street $284.37, they might very well take you to court. A small, locally owned business person is much more likely to sue you than a big corporation because he is uninformed about debt collection and needs the money more than a big company. Of course, most attorneys, even small town attorneys, don't waste their time on cases involving small amounts. If a small creditor sues you, it will likely be in small claims court.

Creditors don't sue those who stand up for themselves. If you claim that you don't owe the debt for one reason or another and can offer proof that you don't, the odds that you will be sued are reduced significantly regardless of how much you owe or how much they threaten to sue. The average creditor's attorney isn't willing to go after a debtor who is putting up a legitimate fight even if the amount of money owed is significant. So, when someone claims you owe a debt, send them a certified letter telling them why you don't think you owe the debt along with copies of any proof you have. Your odds of being sued will go down tremendously.

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Debt Negotiation -- Table of Contents

What Are Your Options Regarding Debt?

Is Debt Negotiation for You?

Why Creditors Are Willing to Negotiate Debt

Alternate Repayment Plans

Reduced Settlements

Negotiating with Unsecured Creditors

Negotiating with Debt Collectors

Obstacles to Negotiating with Creditors / Debt Collectors

The Negative Side of Debt Negotiation

What are the Odds of Being Sued If I Don't Pay?

Make It Harder for Creditors to Sue You

What Settlement Amount Should I Offer?

Negotiating Medical Debt

Negotiating Credit Card Debt

Negotiating Tax Debt

21 Sample Debt Negotiation Letters

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Identity Theft

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Debt Negotiation

Handling Debt Collectors

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Garnishments & Liens

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A good example of this type of situation occurs when a couple divorces. If the divorce decree states that the wife has the responsibility of paying of the XYZ credit card, then it is unlikely that XYZ will sue the husband when the wife doesn't pay, even though he is legally still responsible for the debt. Why? Because if he is sued, he will appear in court with the divorce decree claiming he no longer has a duty to pay the debt, and the judge might take pity on him and the creditor might lose.

Is the collection letter you received from a creditor or collector unusually harsh? If so, this is a sure sign of a bluff. When a debt collector or creditor thinks that they can't collect a debt, they will send out a very scary letter to try and get you to pay. If you received a letter that seems much too strong for the amount of debt you owe, it probably means that the one thing they won't do is sue you. The strong letter is a tactic used to try and scare you into paying in full as quickly as possible since they know they can't collect from you.

Creditors don't sue those who are judgment proof: Most people would pay their debts if they had the money, so most accounts that fall in to the hands of debt collectors are owed by those who are considered "judgment proof". A person who is judgment proof has few assets and the debt is unsecured, so there is no money to be had anywhere. You can't get blood out of a turnip is the most appropriate adage. If a creditor is convinced you're broke, he will probably not sue. The biggest threat to you if you have no physical assets is a wage garnishment.

How old is the debt? Regardless of what a creditor or collector tells you, they do not sue over old debt. "Old" debt refers to debt that is more than four years old. In fact, there are statutes of limitation in every state that regulate the collection of old debt. Sometimes, old uncollectible accounts are purchased by collection agencies which then start sending out collection letters to debtors who thought the accounts had been written off years ago. If you receive such a letter regarding old debt, review your state's laws on collecting old debt and assess your risk of being sued over it. Odds are high that you can ignore their letters completely. It's easy to fight back in this situation -- write them back immediately and ask them to (see debt sample 2a). They are required to send you documentation proving you owe the debt and are prevented from inserting a negative notation regarding the debt on your credit report. Once they receive such a request from you, chances are high that you won't hear from them again.


ilambert 18 months ago

I promised to give you an update Brie, I went to court. I explained the situation to the Judge. He said you had the credit card and you used it so therefor you are responsible for the debt and all the additional charges for court costs and attorneys fees. He then approved the judgment against us. I said my husband and I are both disabled and only have social security disability income and there is no way for us to pay this back. I asked if they could take my house and the Judge said absolutely, I would suggest you call them and make arrangements for payment!! I started crying and he said too bad, you should have thought about that before you used the credit card, and asked one of the attorneys on the side of the courtroom to talk to us. The judge entered the judgment and the lawyer talked to my husband and I in the hallway and told us that the next step is I will receive a form to list any and all assets such as vehicle, jewelry, house and anything with any value!! I don't own my vehicle and it has no equity, I have no jewelry and I sincerely doubt the house has much equity over the mortgage balance, but the point is they can sell it according to this judge. This is NC, maybe the laws are different here? I am to list them all so the credit card company can sell them to pay the debt! Seriously WTH!!! This is Sears Citibank card and I owed them originally $6,500 but they put on all kinds of over the credit limit fees and late charges. As soon as I was no longer able to work I had notified them, they immediately made my credit line what the current balance was, so every month after that they added over the limit fees AND late charges- it ballooned the amount due to over $8K since last April!! I still haven't received the form, but I am supposed to fill it out and file a copy with the court when I do. I don't see what the point was in responding to the original summons, if anything all it accomplished was making a terrible situation even worse :(


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 18 months ago from Manhattan Author

Wow, I'm so sorry to hear this. I don't know what to say, it sounds like the judge had no mercy at all, terrible. Why don't you try contacting your congressman to see if they could do something..you have nothing to lose.


ilambert 18 months ago

not only did he have no mercy at all, he degraded me in front of the people in the courtroom. Before they heard my case the lawyer for Citibank Sears and the Judge were talking about their latest golf game~ I kid you not. Every single person that went before him had no chance at all, he filed every single judgment against each defendant. Yesterday the filed judgment came in the mail but I got no form at all to fill out. I don't know if there even is such a thing or the lawyer just told us that to get us out of the courtroom :(


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 18 months ago from Manhattan Author

Sounds like a corrupt judge if you ask me.


Frank 18 months ago

Can My Bank Take My Social Security Benefits to Pay My Credit Card Bill?

If you owe on an old debt and receive Social Security payments, you may be wondering whether that money can be taken to pay for the outstanding debt. Generally speaking, Social Security Income (SSI) is protected by federal law. It's a welfare program to support those who cannot care for themselves. If your Social Security is deposited into a bank account, a creditor with a judgment cannot execute against that account to satisfy the claim against you. There are exceptions, however.

If your Social Security income is from a disability award (SSDI) or Social Security retirement income, then it is not completely protected by federal law. Claims for taxes or other money owed to the government, child support obligations or student loan payments can be satisfied from this money.

Don't Mix Your Money

For this reason, it is important not to mix your Social Security money into an account with money that comes from other sources, as it may become impossible to figure out which money is protected and what is not. When you mix your funds, you may lose it all to your creditors.

A Credit.com reader raised a different but related question: "Can a credit union setoff my account that contains Social Security money to pay an overdue credit card bill I owe to the credit union?"

The key word here is setoff. While it is a simple word, setoff is a difficult concept to describe. When you deposit funds with an institution like a bank or a credit union, that institution owes you that money. In effect, you are lending that money to the bank and in exchange, they pay you interest on that "loan." Likewise, when you borrow money from that same bank, you have an obligation to pay them back. Setoff is the right to cancel out the obligations. Typically, you will see a bank take money out of your account to satisfy a debt that is owed to it.

Setoff is a creature of the common law with roots in ancient England. Most deposit institutions like banks and credit unions will also have an account agreement that will cover setoff. The deposit contract allows the bank to invade your account by withdrawing money and applying it to debts it is owed. Both the common law and deposit agreements seem to be contrary to the Social Security Act protections. This would mean the bank might take money out of your account that contains only Social Security funds.

The Social Security Act & Setoff

Social Security funds are not entirely protected from setoff. Banks are not allowed to offset Social Security funds for just any money owed. The debt that is owed must arise from the same account relationship. This means that the debt must arise as the result of the deposit account. If the account where your Social Security money is deposited has incurred overdraft fees or account charges, then the bank or credit union can take money out of the account as an offset for those fees owed to it.

A bank or credit union cannot take money out of an account where only Social Security money is deposited as a setoff for other debts owed to it. If you have a credit card or loan account with the same institution that is not being paid, that institution cannot take money out of the account to pay it unless you authorize that transfer.

How Your Accounts Are Protected

Effective May 1, 2011, the U.S. Treasury has enacted certain steps that banks must take to safeguard Social Security funds, Veteran's benefits, Federal Railroad retirement unemployment and sickness benefits, and Civil Service Retirement System and Federal Employee Retirement System benefits. When the federal government inserts an electronic "tag" in all direct deposits of exempted payments, the bank has to follow the regulation.

1.Within two business days after a bank receives a garnishment order from a court, it must review the customer's account and determine what money in the account is exempt from seizure. Those payments cannot be frozen or garnished.

2.Banks are required to exempt all tagged deposits made during the two months prior to the receipt of any garnishment order and protect those deposits from garnishment.

3.Within three business days of receiving the garnishment order, the bank must provide the customer with the name of the creditor, the date of the garnishment and the amount of both protected and non-protected assets in the account.

4.Amounts owed for federal taxes and in response to state child support agencies cannot be protected from garnishment — even if they come from otherwise exempted federal sources. In other words, even under this new regulation, your Social Security or federal pension payments can be garnished to pay for overdue federal taxes or for child support.

As always, if you think that your accounts have been wrongfully setoff or garnished, you need to take action to protect them. Consult with a qualified lawyer to protect your rights


Frank 18 months ago

Brie.. In the case of I Lambert above.. Just because the judge did ok the judgment that don't mean they can collect on that judgment..

First they can't freeze there bank account.. These people are collecting Social Security Disability.

The only thing the creditors can do is force them to sell anything of value.. If they have anything of value.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 18 months ago from Manhattan Author

She is worried that they will force the sale of her home.


ilambert 18 months ago

Frank- We are both now disabled and on social security disability, although my husband turned 62 so I think his is now regular social security retirement income, anyway we managed to pay everything else on time, have never paid the mortgage or utilities or anything else late, but had no choice but to stop paying all the credit cards last year in April-May timeframe. Can they still come after our house? We don't own anything of value except the house, and its questionable if it worth much more than we owe. We don't have any kind of federal debt, or personal loan debt or tax debt. The mortgage on the house my parents were living in until they died was in our names, it actually was my sisters house, an investment that she put a lot of money into to make it nice for them. anyway that house was sold after my Mom passed away last October. So now the only thing in our name is our home and a car loan that just started so there is zero equity in the vehicle.


Frank 18 months ago

ilambert.. Debt collectors can not go after your Social Security Disability or Social Security those are considered EXEMPT INCCOME.

I doubt that they can force you to sell your house either..

Debt collectors can put a lien on your house though.. That way they get paid if you sell your house.

Depending on the law in your state regarding personal property on what can and can't be taken to be sold. In short debt collectors can not leave you without anything..


ilambert 18 months ago

I live in North Carolina and someone should clue in the Sheriff, the Judge and the attorney for Citibank Sears then, as all three seem to think they can do whatever is necessary to pay back the debt. We even had the Sheriff tell us when he served the papers that they would even take our 15 year old German Shepherd if they could sell her for any money. You think bill collectors are bad, the intimidation of the law was far worse, even when I explained that I have what is known to be a terminal disease, they have absolutely NO EMPATHY at all. A pox on all of them I say!!


FRANK 18 months ago

ilambert.. I suggest that you find out from a lawyer exactly what property debt collectors can force you to sell and what they can't in North Carolina.


Frank 16 months ago

Brie.. I read quite a few of your articles and Is Bankruptcy a Good Option for the Elderly is really interesting.

There is quite a few seniors filing for bankruptcy that more than likely don't have to..

Most attorneys will tell you if your judgment proof or not but there are the others that only think of the money they can make.

I also like the article about selling yourself to make money.. My problem I can't find any buyers.. Any ideas?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 16 months ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks Frank. What did you do before you retired? How old are you? And what do you like to do now?


Frank 16 months ago

Hi Brie... Well before I retired I was a baker.. I worked in a small Italian bakery for 35 years making Italian bread and rolls.. I started out as a pastry baker and cake decorator, but over time I changed to making bread and rolls..

I just turned to 69 years old in April..

What I do now??? Well I go to the Turning Stone Casino quite a bit to donate. I like going out with my best friend for coffee and just hanging out.. I also watch Fox News a lot and I enjoy action movies.

What about you? Same questions you asked me..

Have a great day....


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 16 months ago from Manhattan Author

You know Frank, you could earn some money on the side baking cakes for people if you are so inclined.

Me, I am not retired ..unfortunately :) I am self-employed as a care-giver for 2 women in Manhattan but I also invent things and I used to write ;) I've also been a school teacher, realtor and B&B owner among other things. I will be 54 next month. I enjoy exploring Manhattan, writing, reading, photography, cooking, going to the movies and out to dinner with friends.


Frank 16 months ago

Ok Brie I'm curious.. What do you invent??

Of course you like exploring Manhattan you live there..

I also see you have been into a lot of other things as well.. That's a great asset to have.

Plus your still young and that's a plus.

I see we like some of the same things... Great minds think alike they say..


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 16 months ago from Manhattan Author

Well Frank..I am shopping my invention around right now so I don't want to say just yet. Once I get a licensing deal then I will tell you ;)


junebug 16 months ago

I am a 69 yr old widow and I owe about thirty five thousand dollars on cc's and I only get ss but I gave my son all of my property a little more than a year ago and have nothing, so I went down the other day to file bankruptsy and the attorney said that since I gave this away I just can't file for four years after I gave it away but I owed him for medical bills and I really needed to give it to him, what can I do as the creditors don't sleep.


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 16 months ago from Manhattan Author

Just stop paying the bills, write to your creditors and tell them you have no money, no assets and only collect SS, tell them not to call (if they call after you tell them that YOU can SUE them) and then don't answer your phone when a creditor calls. You don't have to file bankruptcy if you don't have any assets or income..just quit paying.


Frank 15 months ago

Hi Brie... I read someplace that you leaving Manhattan?


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 15 months ago from Manhattan Author

No..I left for about a year and a half but that was over 9 months ago. I'm here and loving it.


Frank 15 months ago

Brie.. Here's a idea... Since your now living in New York State.. How about going to the New York State Fair located in Syracuse, New York at the State Fair Grounds.. I think it's about 6 hours from where you are by bus or drive... You should read about it down there.....


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 15 months ago from Manhattan Author

Sorry Frank, I work everyday and besides I don't own a car.

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