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Thinking of filing but so many worried about so many questions

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    Thinking of filing but so many worried about so many questions

    Hi board, this is my first post here, been lurking for a couple weeks and basically scouring the internet for any talk about bankruptcy. My story is that up until this summer I have always had some debt...15K or so but always managable even though it took a long time to chip away. Well unfortunately I signed up to an online gambling site and quickly became addicted. Big wins and then huge losses and then made the mistake of thinking I could make up my losses. Before I knew it I was losing my mind and my sense of value of money, by the time I hit rock bottom and realized that I had to stop I had already probably contributed $45K to my debt in just a few months bringing my overall debt to $67K. Basically Ive been able skate by the past couple of months. I have stopped gambling after a couple of smaller relaspes. I plan on looking into some counseling, not sure about Gamblers Anonymous. Right now I feel with a plan I am going to have the right mindframe to stay away and also will be self banning as soon as I make sure that I can gain my account information for tax purposes.

    However as a landscaper who makes in total about $44K a year and now will be headed to a seasonal unemployment for a few months, income will be less. I have kept up with credit card bills up until just missing a Discover and BOA this past month and I have 3 other cards due for smaller amounts that I think I will pay at the beginning of the month but then stop paying after that.

    My questions revolve around the gambling...should I wait about 6 months...April/May to put some time between myself and the gambling...there was a brief gambling try the first week in October but I really have put my mind into that I can never go back. I opened up to my partner back in July and then have really had some in depth conversations since and he has promised to be strong for me emotionally and if he needs to chip in with money. Another thing I worried about is possible tax returns. So I have kept a rough draft on wins and losses but will go back to the site to figure out I said I had huge highs and huge lows, I never really took out money more than a small amount. I imagine that my winnings probably are over $100K with losses over $ i should be able to itemize everything where my losses offset the winnings. However very worried about how that might look to a trustee

    Also one more I work for my brother in a landscaping company. A couple years back our mower broke down and on short term we had to buy a new one that day. Unfortunately his credit was wrecked and mine was good at the time so the mower was put in my was about $9500 and now we have about $4K left on it to pay. I do not pay anything. He writes the checks out and sends it himself. Its a secured loan I believe...what will happen with that in bankruptcy

    I realize I have to talk to an attorney and will try to do that sometimes next month. I am worried that before I file, collections might come down on me...could they sue within 6 months? I also realize my gambling problem was just insane. You guys wouldnt even want to hear it, its so embarrassing for me and such a low point so I know that I have to really be vigilient about that problem not coming back again.

    Well thanks for listening to this ramble but its good to get it off my check

    First off mk624 Welcome and do not be embarrassed about the journey that brought you to BK, we all have reasons and it is not an easy journey or an easy decision to make. The most positive thing is that NOW you (we) are doing something to make the situation better.

    I don't know how the gambling is handled in the course of BK. I am not sure how the winnings/losses are calculated into your income, etc. I know they ask how you get into the debt. I would pursue treatment or counseling if it's something you may fall back into because you are coming up with a solution and you wouldn't want to attain more debt in the future.

    I am not an expert and my past story probably is lost from when the site was hacked. I had posted a lot more than what my new profile shows! My comments are based on my personal experience in my state and maybe from some knowledge I gathered on this site. Always cheek with an attorney and don't take any comments from here as "gospel"

    It took longer than 6 months for the credit card companies to sue me and/or my husband. First they keep sending bills that you missed a payment or two or three, then it goes to their collections (which might not look like it's internal collections, but it is) and then they sell it off and it comes from a different collection agency. I don't remember how long it was, but it was longer than 6 months. Even once you are sued you can drag it out longer, but that's really living on borrowed time. I waited way too long, procrastinated due to the emotional stress. I do not recommend procrastinating. I wish we would hadn't done it, but fortunately it worked out. They will be calling you and quite incessantly. I unplugged our rarely used landline and put my cell on silent. Since I had changed jobs most did not have my work number. I only had one creditor call work and that was just weeks before we filed.

    If you file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 will make a difference, we went with Chapter 13 as we have a house and cars and wanted to keep it and our income fit the profile for 13. We are paying back 100% of the debt. The positive is that the interest stopped growing and it will all be paid in 5 yrs (not that it is easy).

    I would definitely SEE a good experienced BK lawyer who has had many cases in the jurisdiction where you will file. You have unique circumstances. Especially with the mower which your brother pays and it's in your name. If it's paid on from my limited understanding of BK it might be seen as a preferential payment of that creditor over the other creditors. Or what you can do in order to keep the mower, etc.

    See more than one attorney if you need to and pick one who you feel comfortable with, if you gut says run then run even faster away! The first attorney we saw was not a good one which was part of the reason we procrastinated.


      Gambling has been the main reason behind most of my financial issues. You are not alone mk624. I had never gambled until I went to poker dealer school at a casino. I wanted a part time job on the weekends and I ended up with a horrible addiction. I have filed Chapter 7 twice since then. The first with an attorney (she was awful and cost me a lot of money) and the second time Pro Se. The only gambling income I listed was what came with a 1099G form.

      I don't know how to stop gambling. I have lost more money than I can honestly keep track of in the last 15 years. I had a rare day off a couple of weeks ago all to myself. I had all these plans for the day, but instead I laid in bed playing slots on my phone and deposited $2,000 using my credit card. I have self-excluded myself from all the casinos in my state. Now I take weekend trips out of state to gamble. I sign up on online sites using my girlfriends info because I have self excluded myself from the online sites as well. I don't know if it ever ends.


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