I’d Like My Farmer Father to Co-Sign for a Loan so I Can Get Out Of Debt. – Chris

“Dear Steve,

36 years old. In the last 5 years I have had two extended periods of unemployment. I now make 37,000 a year in a good salaried job which I was hired full-time at 3 months ago. The previous 22 months I was either unemployed or making temp wages and built on my debt. Now I have a massive $80000.00 in credit card debt spread over 3 cards. I have an older car and my only real asset is a life insurance policy who’s cash value is around 19 thousand. I live in an apartment in Chicago with a roommate…our rent is 1000 split two ways. I owe that roommate around $2000 which she will let me pay in small installments. I had been hopeful during the last few years that my father who owns land (a farmer downstate) would co-sign a bank loan with me, allowing me to wipe out my debt and pay off a 5 year bank note. However, he cannot do this now for various reasons.

As of now, I’ve still never missed or been late on a payment (somehow)…though I’ve had to sell items, borrow money, and shuffle money around to do so. Right now I’m coming up short every month, though not a massive amount anymore. But, it’s still short and I’m needing to find money every month.

I am confused as to what to do about my current situation (described above). Should I…

Declare bankruptcy? This is the option most (my father and girlfriend included) are pushing me into. If I declared bankruptcy, wouldn’t they liquidate my life insurance policy? Would I be likely to be Chapter 11 since I have a steady income now?

Would it make more sense to cash in my life insurance policy instead?

Or should I look into debt consolidation?


Dear Chris,

I think your father and girlfriend have given you some sensible advice. You have asked some excellent questions about bankruptcy here but the best answers will come from the free bankruptcy consultation appointment you need to schedule with a local bankruptcy attorney. Make some calls and find a local bankruptcy attorney to go meet.

Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.
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If your father co-signed a loan for you to deal with this, even I would have to fly up there and kick his ass. It is grossly unfair for you to drag others into the mess you are in right now.

You roommate sounds like she was a great help in fronting you the rent but those days need to be over. I need for you to now step up, do the hard thing, and face your problem straight on and resolve it. The only legal tool for you to do that with is going to be bankruptcy.

You are out of assets to sell, out of payments, and more importantly just about out of time.

And oh yes, it would make no sense to cash in your life insurance policy. It’s a drop in the bucket that is not going to solve the entire problem.

Please update me on your progress by

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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