A Debt Consolidation Company Signed Up My Elderly Parents On a Program They Can’t Afford. – Harley Jean

“Dear Steve,

I am trying to help my parents who are 76 and 80 years old. They have 30,000.00 in Credit Card Debt. Mother without my knowing signed up with a consolidation company and agreed to have 800.00 taken out of her Checking Account monthly, they do not have this money available. I now know they have been living on CC’s for the past couple of years. They is no money available to make CC payments. They are still paying on their home. I am not sure what to do to help them. What would happen if they just did not pay the CC’s. Would a lein be put on their house ? would they be sued ? Their only income is social security and a 100.00 check for retirement. less than 2000.00 a month income.
Thanks for your help.

Harley Jean”

Dear Harley Jean,

I’d love to tell you this is an atypical situation but it’s not. Most debt relief companies are more focused on selling their product than making sure it is appropriate for the elderly consumer.

Based on what you shared there is no reason why your parents should have ever been enrolled in that program. Clearly she has no means to afford it.

The biggest problem here is going to be the home. Hopefully you can give me some more details on it.
Do they own the home jointly?
How much is the home worth and how much do they owe on it?
What state are they in?

Until we know more information here it would not make sense to just suddenly stop paying an exposing them to a lawsuits and a lien without a plan.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.


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4 thoughts on “A Debt Consolidation Company Signed Up My Elderly Parents On a Program They Can’t Afford. – Harley Jean”

  1. Hi Steve ,
    My Parents and I met with an Attorney today. It looks as it they will be filing Chapter 7. This way they will be able to keep the house, and desolve the Credit Card debt.  I am looking into any other assistance I can get them so if anyone has any information that would be helpful I am greatful for your imput. I will look into getting them on Medicaid and see about getting help with their utility bill. I am not sure if any of this will work but I am going to try. My parents have worked hard to raise there children and gave us a good living, It really breaks my heart to see them going through this. Thanks for your website and offering information to all .

  2. Steve Thanks for your response to my questions, The balance on the home is around 29,000.00 the loan is in both names.  The state is Alabama.  I do believe there is a homestead act in Alabama.  Thanks for your help.


    • I think it’s time to talk to a local bankruptcy attorney. It would appear that terminating their continued obligation for the debt is reasonable on their income and circumstances. It’s a far better approach that just ignoring the situation. At least a bankruptcy will close the door on the debt, stop future calls from collectors and prevent lawsuits over the debt.

      Meet with a local bankruptcy attorney and then please update me on what you decide to do.


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