I Need to Put My Debt Behind Me. I Have No More Money to Make Payments. – Chris

“Dear Steve,

I turned my car in about a year ago. I have perodically made small payments to a collection agency. This loan was through Capital One Auto Finance. The reason for turning the car in was it was costing me more to keep it running than I could afford. This was a nice car with very few miles and extended warranty. Unfortunately things that went wrong were always somehow not covered.

Within a year I literally had the thing towed in 12 times. I couldnt even tell you how much it cost me, one little mishap left me stranded on vacation in another state for two extra weeks because they could get the parts for the car. I tried to get the dealer to do something but no help could be found so I just turned it in.

Recently I was contacted again by the collection company and offered a settlement. I was to pay $100 in Nov and & Dec then the remaining settlement of $2100 in Jan. Today when I was called it was a new person telling me the guy I spoke with no longer woked there and they could not verify nor standby this offer but was willing to let me pay nearly $4000 to close this out to keep from taking me to court and garnishing my wages.

I BEGGED the manager I spoke with to pull the tape of the guy that worked there and myself talking to verify what I was saying, and they talked all the way around it. Even saying that that was two months ago and chances are it had been erased etc. Dont get me wrong I owe this debt, but the car sold for $13000, I paid nearly $8000 on it before letting it go, they sold it at auction for $7000. They have already got there money and then some. I have no family to help my moms dead and my dad lives 3 states away and doesnt have a pot to pea in cause he is just a drunk. I am a college educated person, who works hard but this is too much. I also have had two surgeries in the past year and am behind on most of my credit cards. I just got my house payment caught back up.

I just want this behind me, I planned to pay the remaining $2100 dollars this month with tax money but that is all I can pay. Of course they will take that but I am still going to owe the full balance of $8000. I do not have money to continue making payments. Is there a cheaper way for me to get out of this. Please help


Dear Chris,

Sadly, they are playing you. Here is a great lesson to learn from this. If a debt collector comes to an agreement with you, you MUST get it in writing and NEVER make a payment till you do. Collectors lie all the time to sucker consumers in settlements.

When trying to do debt settlements yourself this is just a classic mistake people make. This is why I always recommend using a professional third-party debt settlement company to properly handle a settlement agreement.

The usual scam runs like this, the collector will offer you a sweet deal and you’ll make a couple of payments. All of a sudden you find out the guy isn’t there anymore, did not have the authority to make that offer, there is no record of the offer, etc. And now you’ve made some good faith payments towards a del that no longer exists.

If there are tapes of the calls I find it hard to believe that they are erased after two months. The tapes exist for regulatory compliance and as a CYA. Nobody tapes calls strictly for “training purposes”.

The way I see it you’ve got three options.

  1. Hire a lawyer to represent you and fight this with the collectors.
  2. Pay the collectors what they are now demanding from you.
  3. Go bankrupt and eliminate the debt.


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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.
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