I Never Would Have Thought That Winning Money Could Be Such a Burden On Me. – Jane

“Dear Steve,

I have been reading your advice for awhile. You give wonderful advice. I am in extreme debt..75,000 and had a hugh loss of income when I lost my job. Although thankfully I am employed again, the income is far less then I had. Therefore I am unable to pay my debts.

I finally was ready to make the plunge and contact an attorney about filing bankruptcy when I won some money. Enough to put me current with my bills but then I am basically back to my original income. My question is, should I use this “found” money to get current on my credit cards or is it better to put it aside and see an attorney? Paying the bills will only stall my situation for a few months.I hate not paying the bills and I especially hate the insensitive calls I recieve at least 10 times a day. Who would have thought winning money could be a burden


Dear Jane,

I was just thinking yesterday about some past people I helped that had won a couple of big lotteries and now ten years latter were in horrible financial shape.

Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.

Your situation is a bit different though. You didn’t win enough to pay off the debts, just stall the inevitable for what will be a short period of time.

My opinion is that you should still go see the bankruptcy attorney now and come up with a plan on a timeline that feels right for you.

While this found money will postpone the bankruptcy a bit, the reality is that it won’t reduce your stress or eliminate the underlying problem. Even if you can pay minimums for a couple of months you’ll still know what is just around the corner when you are not drifting along into blissful denial.

The only reason I could see to stall the process and use the money to pay the bills for a few months would be if you had an expectation that your underlying income situation was to change for the better in the next 60 days.

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After your appointment with the bankruptcy attorney, come back and

P.S. Be sure to read ‘The Secret of Surviving Through Difficult Economic Times. What I Learned On My Journey‘.

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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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