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    Shameful questions

    So... I believe I need to file BK. I have 2 personal loans as well as 5 credit cards. Total, I am debt around $20K. This doesn't seem like a lot, but my wife and I only makes about $40K a year and have a young daughter. We have recently been eating less because we can't afford the groceries for the two of us along with diapers, food for the kid, credit cards, and other normal bills.
    ​​​​​​
    The personal loans were used to pay down credit card debt on the same cards I have now over the last 3-4 years. The debt regrew, obviously. The last loan was taken out only about a year ago, and the card it paid down has already nearly maxed out again.

    I have never missed a payment in the entire life of any of these cards. The largest card, around $4K has not been used for any purchases at all for around 11 months now.

    What worries me, is that a large portion of our debt is luxury purchase. Not necessarily large items, but eating out, presents for others, movies, etc... The most worrying is the fact that at least $3K of this debt was spent entirely on pornography last year.

    So as you can see, after the second loan, gaining more debt was mostly our own fault and completely stupid of us. The porn was my own fault, as many have probably already guessed. I don't even know how I had sunken low enough to let this happen. I justified it at the time with relationship issues, but looking back I'm just disgusted and deeply ashamed.

    So I suppose one of my questions is; Will somebody look back far into our credit card purchase history and see that $3K was spent on a specific porn vid selling website? And secondly, will it be questioned and possibly cause a dismissal? Does being stupid enough to financially wreck ourselves over luxury constitute dismissal? Or will the fact that loans used to pay off debt that only regrew cause issues?

    #2
    It really depends on when these purchases were made. A credit card company can object to the discharge of any luxury items purchased 90 days before bankruptcy. If over 600 dollars is spent on a luxury item within the 90 days prior to filing then the presumption is that it is a fraudulent purchase. They don't really care if you spent money on porn or whatever. They are looking to see if you decided to run up your balances on the eve of bankruptcy knowing that the balance will be wiped out. Taking on debts for luxury items knowing that you will never repay is an abuse of the system.

    What is a "luxury" item is never strictly defined. I don't think eating at an average restaurant would be considered a luxury item nor would seeing movies. If you purchased a gift for someone over $600 in value within the last 2 years then you are obligated to report the gift and the bankruptcy trustee can go and try to collect that gift from who ever received it.

    If you stop using your credit cards entirely 90 days before actually filing your bankruptcy I seriously doubt it would be an issue. I would say go ahead and stop paying the cards 90 days before filing as well. Payments made to some cards and not others would be seen as a preferential payment.

    Try to get a free consult with a lawyer or better yet hire a lawyer to help you file. It honestly sounds like your case would be pretty straight forward to me. Good Luck!

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      #3
      First off, take a deep breathe and just know that creditors will not lose 1 second of sleep worrying about you and your family, so don't lose sleep worrying about them.

      My best advice is to look up and read reviews of Bankruptcy Attorney's near you, and wait.... I waited almost 1 year, until I got served papers with a lawsuit for a repossessed vehicle in which I owed around $20,000....then I Filed 1 week later.

      We all make mistakes, and believe me, your Debt is NOTHING compared to others here, I was at quadruple what your debt is now so don't feel too bad.

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        #4
        It's good you are taking control of things now. Find a good attorney and get to it. My husband and struggled a long time, many years with credit card debt , transferring balances, paying something down only to get it run back up/higher and trust me after 20 yrs it really adds up to an unbelievable amount. You and your wife and younger than we are and it will be very good if you get it taken care of now and don't have to worry about it when your kid is starting college.

        I live in Ohio, too. If you live in Northeastern Ohio you can private message me and I can share my attorney's name. I do not get any kickback from them, they are a firm with a long solid history of bankruptcy cases. I've been very happy with them and I would suggest reading their website as well as other attorney's and made a decision.

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          #5
          I greatly appreciate all answers and assurances I have received so far. I'm also pretty shocked I haven't openly faced any judgement yet. That's not to say that I believe the people here are judgemental, but I think I have shamed myself enough that I expect others to do so as well. I will schedule a consultation with a bankruptcy lawyer soon, I believe.

          Again, I appreciate each person who took the time to respond.

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            #6
            None of my credit card purchases were ever questioned by anyone, not my attorney, not my trustee or the creditors. I had over a dozen credit accounts too. I was careful not to use my credit cards less than 90 days before filing. By that time, I stopped paying them anyway.

            Aren't the purchases of "adult" items listed on your credit-card bill with some generic-sounding name like "Acme Entertainment" or "A & B Productions" that doesn't make it obvious?
            Filed Ch 13 November 2013, discharged March 2019
            Credit Karma FICO scores 2 months post-discharge:
            718 Trans Union/732 Equifax

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              #7
              I think a lot of us have felt shame over something in Bankruptcy if we have made unwise choices. You are working to make things better. You did not mention divorce which to me indicated that you and your wife are working on this together.

              Comment


                #8
                An attorney will answer all your questions during your initial consultation. Try a site like Avvo to find a lawyer, that's where I found mine and he was great.

                As was said, the trustee won't care what you charged as long as you didn't buy huge expensive things right before you filed and then try to bail out of the debt. I doubt they'd even blink at the porn, they've seen it all! All they care about is if you have any assets they can sell to pay creditors and if you committed fraud or are trying to hide assets.

                Good luck!!

                Comment


                  #9
                  I believe that 4 out of 6 cards have had 0 purchases made on them within almost 11 months now. I believe that will lend favor towards me for the most part. I'm hoping it will help me avoid those creditors making any claims against me.

                  I have also not made any single purchase more than $300 within over a year or so on any credit cards. Something I also hope will make this more straightforward and fast.

                  You're right, the adult purchases don't necessarily say anything that lends idea towards what they are exactly. Maybe I can get by with simply saying they are for adult items and content. I'd really hate the need to fully explain and detail each purchase.

                  Carmella, you're correct. My wife and I will be working together in this. We have a wonderful relationship today, and both love each other very much. We have always had the love; we just stumbled a little on the path.

                  I'm new to this forum and I don't quite understand how everything works or organizing quoting for my posts, so I apologize for that.

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                    #10
                    The only purchases you'd have to explain is anything expensive bought right before filing, because they'll want to know if you tried to commit fraud by buying luxury items knowing you were never going to pay for them. As long as you didn't buy anything major recently, you're good. They won't be going over your purchase history and analyzing every transaction. They're looking for big ticket stuff bought within the last six months or so.

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