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Naivesteve

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Ex Girlfriends and Dumb Choices
3 years ago I opened 3 credit cards to "boost" my credit score. I was uninformed and thought this was the way. I primarily did this to assist my girlfriend at the time with things for her 2 kids. We eventually separated a year or so later and for some reason the credit cards(which I never used) were forgotten about. Low and behold I find that the cards have been maxed and no payment has been made since 2013. So they hit collections. My credit score went from a 730 to a now 580. I feel it pointless to try and pay off the current almost $8000 bc paying will help me in no way and it puts me in a bind as I'm currently engaged with s child. These negative marks have cause me to be declined for home loans, car loans or anything credit based. I understand that this is a product of my own stupidity but would this be grounds enough to file for bankruptcy to keep from anything else coming back to bite me in the a$$. I would like to buy a home and quit driving my car from high school(I'm 25). I'm good with my money I pay things on time and I make decent money but this mishap from 3 years ago is frustrating. What do I do.

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In order to file bankruptcy on this, you will have to show the courts your ability or inability to pay the debt.  While payment is full is not a requirement of the action, the best you would probably be able to do is file Chapter 13, this is where you pay off the debt in installments.  The damage is already done to your credit and if you were to file for protection, you'll add another 7 years to your negative credit report.  Contact the creditor, negotiate a settlement.   Then, whatever you do, honor the commitment you make with the firm making timely payments.  During your negoiation either for pay off or pay for delete, ensure one of the terms is updating the credit report to show the debt was paid.  Routinely, collections don't update for this unless it is agreed to in writing in advance.   Your score will increase when the debt is paid off and in 4 years, it won't even be an issue.

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Can you afford to have your credit score further 'trashed' for the next ten years?  That is what would happen if you filed bankruptcy.  I suggest reading the articles on this site since the purpose of Credit Karma is to teach how credit works and show how to build one's credit score.  These are valuable skills you will use for the rest of your life.  And you can learn how to negotiate a 'pay for delete' agreement which just may get these accounts off your reoports sooner and cheaper.  I have learned a lot and am benefitting from that knowledge.  You can, too.  

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