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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012

    Default Struggling With Bills While On a Chapter 13 Plan

    My question involves bankruptcy in the state of: Alabama

    My parents bought a house in 2008 and only a few months after live there they had to file bankruptcy. I joined the Army that year and didn't know of this and over the years they keep asking for more money. It's a two story home and high ceilings with 4 people living in the home with different work schedules. The utilities are constantly in use all day and night due to this. Sometimes they cost as high as 500 dollars. My father is the only one that works a regular job with my mother being unable due to medical conditions. One of my siblings is in high school and the other struggles to find work after dropping out of high school. My dad only brings in less than $2000 a month even after 20 years of working in the company. The cost of living is increasing and he hasn't received a pay raise in 4 years and the family insurance through the company he works for increased to 250 per paycheck. He has pawned a lot of valuables to still struggle with paying the 250 for the bankruptcy, gas for work, food, utilities, and some time ago he got titles loans on both vehicles so he has to pay the interest on those. Every pay day, which is every 2 weeks he struggles to pay the bills and debts with some being left unpaid. He has $400 overdraft protection with his bank and he is constantly having to use it, and quite often he exceeds it and has to pay the 25$ fee for every transaction. I don't think they know what to do and it seems he is so overwhelmed that he just wants to ignore most of the problems when he gets in after a hard days work. He is close to retirement age and I hate to see them struggle at such an age. Ever since I've joined the Army, I've given thousands of dollars to them in which I thought they were using to pay the mortgage. Recently I found out that the $2000 dollars I transferred to them while I was deployed to Iraq went to paying off pawn loans and overdraft fees. I've payed other bills such as car loans, utilities, food and gas. I am only in the National Guard and after being back from Iraq for 3 months, I still am trying to move and find work in GA while I work locally here in AL. I made a pretty good amount of money in Iraq and I'm running out of it. I don't want to continue just blowing money on bailouts for them that are pointless. How can they improve their situation? I would pay every last dime to get them to a home that would be affordable for them as far as the utilities goes. I found a 3 bedroom trailer for about $40,000 dollars which is great considering when this house was bought in 2008 it was $140,000. Is there anyway, given the circumstances, that my parents can at least rent a cheaper home or try to buy the trailer? Please respond. I will update the situation as it goes on, but consider this a cry for help for me and my family.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2011

    Default Re: Struggling With Bills While On a Chapter 13 Plan

    You cannot help someone with the legal capacity and ability to make poor decisions. If you want to truly help them, it appears you need to wait until they lose their house, then buy them a place to live, keeping it in your name. Ditto for the car situation. Don't buy them an expensive car, just a good, low mileage, old one. People with a track record of poor financial management seldom suddenly become responsible.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Struggling With Bills While On a Chapter 13 Plan

    Unfortunately, until your folks acknowledge that they are in way over the heads, there is not much one can do. The simply answer is to walk away from the home and find a cheaper place to live, both in the cost of rent and the cost of utilities. Getting someone to agree that walking is the best choice is tough. Sounds like they need to sit down with a financial counselor of some sort as well as their bk attny (if they have one) . . . kind of like an "intervention".

    I feel for you. Parents should not put their financial burdens on their children - but there is no easy solution when we are dealing with family.

    Hopefully others will chime in with words of wisdom.


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