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Can the Credit Card Company Go After my SSDI or My Wife? – Greg

“Dear Steve,

I had my 1st Transplant in 2000, worked until end of 2009, applied for SSDI was accepted, wont receive 1st ck till June 2010. During the last 10 years I dwindled my saving due to being sick off and on. I only have 21,000 left, I owe credit card debt of 35,000. They worked with me on lowering the interest rate but not the amount. I am being put back on the transplant list for the 2nd time. I wont get medicare A&B until 2 years after my 1st SSDI check. My Health Insurance is 800.00 per month, I need that 21,000 to pay my health insurance premiums for those 2 years. My wife works but only makes 12.00 p/hour. Her company has health insurance but won’t cover transplants. We make to much for Medicaid assistance. Our home has equity of about 20,000 if it would sell. We can make the payments and necessities if we don’t pay the credit card payment of 778.00. I know bankruptcy would take my 21,000 in savings in a blink of an eye. Then I wouldn’t be able to have my transplant. The credit card debt is my name only.

Can the credit card company go after my SSDI or my wife. Can they take me to court and order that I turn over my savings that I need for my health insurance premiums, for my life saving transplant? What is my best option? Is there anything I should do before stop paying the credit card company?


Dear Greg,

It really depends if the credit card account is a joint account or in your name only. Also, if you have any assets in your name that could be a problem as well. I need more information in order to answer your question.

Please update me on your progress by posting updates here in the comments section of your question. I’m very interested in how this works out for you.

About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

1 Comment

  • credit card collectors are not allowed by law to collect federal money which is SSDI you need an account where only SSDI funds are kept seperate from your wife they need to be direct deposited. Merely stateing in court fighting a judement that the funds and income are exempt usually dismisses the case. The answer is no they cannot take any federal SSDI money your judgement proof which means if you don’t pay the credit card they cannot do anything to you except threaten you with lies. However that being said once the money leaves the account anything you buy can be seized if a judgement is awarded outside standard excemptions and it sounds like your home is excempt. As for your wife you two need to keep seperate accounts the credit card company cannot go after you but your wife they can if she’s on the card jointly so essentially they could try to garnish her wages but I think more realistically they would just put a lien on the house which means you can’t sell it. If you owned the house free and clear you could avoid this by putting it into a trust. your best bet is to stop paying on the card and take your money out of the bank so you can pay for your heart transplant you will get a supena to appear about the debt to the credit card company. When you do tell them you want a hearing and use your excemptions and state that your money is SSDI money and is excempt from all collections chances are once they know that they will leave you alone do not let them get a default judgment fight it go to court and as the court to negotiate a debt settlement plan which chances are after the court goes through everything 35 thousand dollars would settle in the court room if you don’t bend an inch to there lawyers and go through the court arbitrator for about seven thousand dollars. So stop spending on the card and protect yourself get your transplant and get well.

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