I’m frantic and don’t know where to turn. My husband of 20+ years informed me recently that he hasn’t been generating income through his business, so he has been taking out cash advances on credit cards, running up lines of credit on our home and other rental property, and depleted all his 401(k) accounts.
He’s done all this without telling me, and most of the debt is in our joint names. I am over 50, have not worked fulltime since our marriage and have a disabled child who needs 24-hour care. We are ready to file bankruptcy, and soon after that will face foreclosure. What can I do to move forward and provide for my child?
Wow, well that was an utter mistake that will lead to your profound financial downfall. But as I always say, “No sense wasting a perfectly good mistake.” And it sounds like he has a lot to learn from his actions.
I’m going to assume that he did all of this in order to care for you and your child. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt that his intentions were good.
But all of that aside we need to deal with the reality in front of us right now. You are busted broke. The only way out of this is going to be to close the door on all of this mess with bankruptcy. I suggest you click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney you like. It is important you find one to talk to ASAP so you can gain some comfort knowing you will be legally protected and represented. And by the way, don’t leave the home until the actual foreclosure, you’ve got some time. You will want the house to be foreclosed on first so the debt from that can be included in your bankruptcy.
While bankruptcy will put a stop to the legal and financial mess that is headed your way from the bad financial decisions he made that nuked your financial life, it will not help you to move forward, for that you need income.
The second step in the two stage plan is to have a game plan on how you will earn money as a family to care for your son, put a roof over your heads, and feed yourselves.
So let’s instead turn our focus to that, the bigger concern I have, the income. What is the plan? Have you spoken to your husband about his income intentions?
Your husband may feel absolutely horrible for what he has done behind your back in all of this. If his intentions were good and you feel you can move forward together, if you can find a way to forgive him, and move forward, that would be beneficial. He must have some skills to earn money and has done so in the past.
Forgiveness is hard, if not impossible for a lot of people, but the more you beat him up over this, the more depressed he is over this, the less likely your opportunities will improve moving forward.
So Karen, where do you stand now and what’s the income plan moving forward?