Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 05-09-2017, 08:18 PM   #61
gone traveling
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 510
Oh, boy, what a depressing thread!! I hope we will not experience anything like stories you've all posted but there's a potential to happen in the future...I'm just hoping for the best and maybe it will never happen.

I don't have advice to DustyMom, but I agree with someone who said that they'd had a similar situation in their family but agreed to pay after the BK only. Hearing/reading what you've already said about them I don't think it would be the end of the world if he lost the job due to the BK. First, you even don't know he'll be able to work or not in the same occupation. Second, the employer might take a pity on the guy and not fire after hearing his predicament. And jeez, do you really can afford to pay for their 6-figure hospital bill?

It's totally understandable to feel resentment and I don't think you should feel bad feeling this way.

I think before you open your wallet you perhaps should help them researching some kind of services that could help them with negotiating their hospital bills, etc.

Now I'm just curious: Can't they agree to some kind of plan to pay the hospital or whatever $10/month and pay it for the rest of their lives? Not sure it's still possible but I've heard such stories that supposedly people did this many year ago (20-30 years ago) unless I was told untrue stories.
aida2003 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 05-09-2017, 08:39 PM   #62
Full time employment: Posting here.
mamadogmamacat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 751
Give advice only at this point. They are adults and need to learn to act like it. Way past time for tough love. If they are serious about changing their ways, advice over say a meal you pay for will be appreciated. If it is not, cut them off. Bankruptcy may well be the best option, and I seriously doubt this will require giving up a job. It did not for a colleague who declared bankruptcy after the boutique business his wife insisted they open later failed. he kept on working throughout the painful process and their finances eventually recovered This was only a few years ago, maybe three or four.
mamadogmamacat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-09-2017, 09:02 PM   #63
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 4,099
Look on the bright side. That hospital bill, along with other bills, will probably evaporate after bankruptcy. You could be doing them a favor by not prolonging it.

Nothing to feel bad about. My understanding is that medical/hospital bills are the number one cause of personal bankruptcy.

Why throw good money after bad just to temporarily salve your feelings?
brett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 12:22 AM   #64
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 1,688
A tough position to be in through no fault of your own.

To add to the collective experience, my parents went through a similar experience when my uncle got into financial difficulties - holding too many highly leveraged investments during an economic downturn. My aunt bailed him out by guaranteeing his debts. My parents refused to provide a guarantee but did offer other assistance including a car. My grandmother (his mother) did the same, providing some money but refused to sign a guarantee. It wasn't enough. My uncle was eventually declared bankrupt and my aunt was dragged down with him. My parents and grandmother (possibly) would have suffered the same fate if they had co-signed, so they made the right decision to offer limited assistance.

None of the siblings have been speaking to each other since then and, as a result of the squabbling, my grandmother wrote her children out of her will, leaving token bequests to her grandchildren and the rest to charity.

When my uncle emerged from bankruptcy he managed to remake a meaningful small fortune but hasn't offered to repay any of the people who tried to help him on the way down.

On a more positive note, I have lent small sums of money to friends twice. In both cases I was paid back when promised and offered interest (which I refused). We are still good friends.

If family members ever got into difficulty, I would provide limited assistance and not care about getting the money back - but not to the point where it impacted on our financial security. It helps that I have good relationships with my siblings and my parents and (for the most part) they are financially responsible people.
__________________
Budgeting is a skill practised by people who are bad at politics.
traineeinvestor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 01:03 AM   #65
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Midwest
Posts: 1,664
BTDT, OP.
Our situation with an "unlucky" relative over 30+ years has been one of our frustration that no lesson has ever been learned (multiple evictions, car repos, etc.). No amount of income from a job was ever enough, and no amount of our help truly helped long term (including taking this person into our home 3x). Poor decisions were never changed and neither were the predictable results. We finally had a tearful final "chat", and walked away, severing future ties.

Even that did not change things-the downward spiral has continued and appears to have hit rock bottom (updates provided through another relative). The difference now is that we are out of it. Our health has improved, since we no longer worry about that person. Some money is owed, but we have accepted that.

We still have occasional guilt, but we are moving on. I truly feel sorry for what you are going through. Just wanted to let you know that you aren't the only one working through that particular problem. Good luck.
brucethebroker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 05:23 AM   #66
Moderator
braumeister's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Flyover country
Posts: 19,215
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamadogmamacat View Post
If they are serious about changing their ways, advice over say a meal you pay for will be appreciated. If it is not, cut them off.
That's a good approach, but

Our ne'er-do-well relative asked (years ago) what he could do to convince us to help him. We spent a couple of weeks researching his situation and came up with a good plan for how he could get out of debt, restructure his business, and turn his life around. It would have entailed him making a few small sacrifices in the short term.

Took him out for a good meal at a restaurant he liked but normally couldn't afford. Over the course of the meal, DW started outlining the plan and we said we would cover his current debt if he agreed to follow the plan.

He got very indignant, told her to save her breath because he wasn't listening, and refused to even accept the sheet of paper with the plan spelled out. "You aren't smart enough to tell me how to run my life. I've told you what I need."

That was the end of that. As mamadogmamacat said, they have to be serious about changing.
__________________
I thought growing old would take longer.
braumeister is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 06:24 AM   #67
gone traveling
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 3,375
Quote:
Originally Posted by brett View Post
We had a similar situation. We decided to help but only after a bankruptcy.

We felt that there was no point in giving money that would simply be used to pay creditors when bankruptcy looked inevitable. If we gave money we wanted it to be used to help them personally.
This.
gerntz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 06:27 AM   #68
gone traveling
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 3,375
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crewer View Post
We helped DB and DSIL a few years ago. She's a 2x cancer survivor and each bout left them with big med bills (after insurance paid) and her without a job. After the first time they moved to a lower cost of living area (also to help take care of her mother) and got reasonably comparable jobs, again with good benefits. Her 2nd cancer threw them off and they declared bankruptcy. We provided cash to help even with that and they promptly paid it back. She's back to work (different place, of course) and they are doing pretty well, though they spent alot of retirement assets before the bankruptcy. Of course, she doesn't expect to live very far into retirement.

Anyway I was very happy to have helped them and I'd do it again (and we may be doing it again, who knows).
This story is different - and good. These people are actually responsible & honest.
gerntz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 06:33 AM   #69
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
kaudrey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Alexandria, Va
Posts: 1,042
I understand how tough this can be. My parents have, several times, given some money to an aunt/uncle who don't have much. The first time, which was probably 15 years ago, I marveled that they needed it, since they seemed to have a new car every few years and had multiple computers and big TVs....if they help now, it will be because my aunt (now 85) has Alzheimer's and my uncle probably could use some help....


I agree this could be a slippery slope. I'd try to help out in tangible ways: help them seek out social services that are available, cook them meals, maybe pay a specific bill once in a while, but don't give them a blank check. Just because you have saved diligently and planned your life doesn't mean you are responsible for them. Be helpful and caring, but don't become their bank.
__________________
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I - I took the one less travelled by...
kaudrey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 07:03 AM   #70
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Fair Lawn
Posts: 2,290
To paraphrase the great prophet, Judge Judy: never lend relatives or friends any money, Either gift it, or don't give money at all. Otherwise, the "lender" becomes the bad guy when they have the audacity to look to get repaid.
I disagree with the other suggestion to give advice to the family members. Unless they overtly ask for advice, they will not listen to a word that is said.
mystang52 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 07:28 AM   #71
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
euro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 1,657
Quote:
Originally Posted by DustyMom View Post
I feel queasy writing about this because it feels like it should be kept private, but I need to vent and that FIRE thing we all have in common is really an important part of this.

So, here's the story. DH's sister and her husband have hit a really big speed bump in the road of life (not the first time, but the biggest bump by far). They have been skirting the edge for as long as I've known them and we've helped in the past by hiring brother-in-law to do work around our house, even when we haven't necessarily needed it (he is in the trades), or paid in advance for work to be done later if they had urgent needs. Now, due to medical issues that hit both within months of each other, they are in dire straits. She had just gone back to work and now he will be incapacitated for 6-9 months, or more (not clear yet). No disability insurance. Not even any health insurance (!), which we just found out. They came right out and asked if we could help.

Our dilemma is that they appear to be in such a deep hole, that there is no possible way we can save them, only kick the problem a few months down the road - throwing good money after bad. In addition, the optics are particularly bad right now. We are literally putting our house on the market in a matter of days, which means a big pay day in the near future. We're also expecting delivery of a brand new motorhome, ordered months ago, with the money sitting in bank just waiting for that call. We appear to be rolling in money, but we've spent years planning this and it was all finally coming together at this moment.

We are prepared to give them some help, but struggling with where to draw the line. It feels so selfish, but we're resentful at the same time, as they've not always made the best choices or exhibited any willingness to sacrifice to get back on track. Before I knew the full extent of their problems I had mentally allocated a larger dollar amount to help out, but now I know that would only be enough to prolong the agony yet still end up in the same place.

[Heavy sigh] Thanks for letting me vent.
Very tough place to be and there can't be ONE right answer for this. I'll just add, from my own painful experience, that loans to family members more often than not ( FAR more often than not), don't turn out to be "loans" at all, but rather they are "gifts". I don't think I'm unique in this, but I have never been paid back by relatives for personal loans - no matter whether they could, or could not afford to pay it back. So, whatever you decide, consider your money gone! If you can live with that and still want to help, then go ahead. If you can't afford to lose the money, don't lend it out.
euro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 07:29 AM   #72
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
euro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 1,657
Quote:
Originally Posted by mystang52 View Post
To paraphrase the great prophet, Judge Judy: never lend relatives or friends any money, Either gift it, or don't give money at all. Otherwise, the "lender" becomes the bad guy when they have the audacity to look to get repaid.
I disagree with the other suggestion to give advice to the family members. Unless they overtly ask for advice, they will not listen to a word that is said.
Thanks mystang52, you said it much more succinctly than I just did..... I fully agree!
euro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 07:33 AM   #73
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
euro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 1,657
Quote:
Originally Posted by braumeister View Post
That's a good approach, but

Our ne'er-do-well relative asked (years ago) what he could do to convince us to help him. We spent a couple of weeks researching his situation and came up with a good plan for how he could get out of debt, restructure his business, and turn his life around. It would have entailed him making a few small sacrifices in the short term.

Took him out for a good meal at a restaurant he liked but normally couldn't afford. Over the course of the meal, DW started outlining the plan and we said we would cover his current debt if he agreed to follow the plan.

He got very indignant, told her to save her breath because he wasn't listening, and refused to even accept the sheet of paper with the plan spelled out. "You aren't smart enough to tell me how to run my life. I've told you what I need."

That was the end of that. As mamadogmamacat said, they have to be serious about changing.
That's actually a better scenario than have them agree to everything just to get the cash and then have no intention to follow through. At least in this case, there were no "misunderstandings"
euro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 07:46 AM   #74
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Tailgate's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,056
Regarding risky loans, I had a banker friend tell me once... 'never loan money to a policeman, preacher or prostitute' ---his words, not mine, but I would add family to the list... gifting ok, lending is dangerous.
Tailgate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 07:53 AM   #75
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 4,099
I think that it is a mistake to think that you can change someone's behaviour by helping them out financially. Almost akin to marrying someone with the view to changing them.

It does not work, never has, and it will only end in disappointment.

So why buy yourself a depleted bank account, a potentially ruined relationship, and a great deal of personal angst by putting your hand in your pocket.

Deep pockets and short arms are sometimes the best response. Perhaps not the easiest, but often the very best for all concerned.
brett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 08:10 AM   #76
Dryer sheet wannabe
DustyMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 21
Wow, I guess my situation really hit a nerve with a lot of you. Thank you so much for the advice and the support. I think I really needed to hear that we should not feel guilty for not wanting to offer up the "riches" we've accumulated through aggressive saving and living below our means over many years.


I want to rectify the impression that I may have given that these relatives are spendthrifts or deadbeats. I think their main problem has been getting in over their heads with a house back in the early 2000's. They've struggled to make the payments and in the process have neglected other debts which have continued to snowball. We did some searching of public records online last night and were dismayed (to put it lightly) at the extent of the problem. We are confident now that there is no way for us to help them out of the hole. I'm not even sure if they've admitted to themselves how bad the problem is (and I'm not even thinking of the hospital bills here). Outwardly they give the impression that they almost have it under control, just need a little help past a rough patch. I also think bankruptcy is their only option. We are meeting with them tonight (not looking forward to it) and we'll see if they actually have an action plan or it they are just waiting to find out if any of the various feelers that they've put out will result in a savior.


It is so painful because it is family that we love and dearly wish we could help, but we can't contribute to a lost cause.


Thank you all again for sharing your situations. We have to believe that they can emerge from these dark times in a better place, but I'm not sure they will be believing that anytime soon.
DustyMom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 08:23 AM   #77
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
exnavynuke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Acworth
Posts: 1,197
Quote:
Originally Posted by braumeister View Post
That's a good approach, but …

Our ne'er-do-well relative asked (years ago) what he could do to convince us to help him. We spent a couple of weeks researching his situation and came up with a good plan for how he could get out of debt, restructure his business, and turn his life around. It would have entailed him making a few small sacrifices in the short term.

Took him out for a good meal at a restaurant he liked but normally couldn't afford. Over the course of the meal, DW started outlining the plan and we said we would cover his current debt if he agreed to follow the plan.

He got very indignant, told her to save her breath because he wasn't listening, and refused to even accept the sheet of paper with the plan spelled out. "You aren't smart enough to tell me how to run my life. I've told you what I need."

That was the end of that. As mamadogmamacat said, they have to be serious about changing.
I've loaned money to family twice. The first was to my sister to help her with college, she paid me back ~25% of it by the time she got married and I forgave the rest of it as a wedding present.

The second time was to my brother and his wife to help avoid foreclosure. The stipulations I had were:
1. First we would sit down and go through all of their finances to determine if they would be able to pay me back (their income situation had changed for the better, but they hadn't yet caught up).
2. The repayment plan included them following a budget that I established for them for the duration.
3. They gave me collateral for the loan (his old truck).

They never missed a payment and repaid me in full ahead of schedule. If their situation hadn't changed to make their budget affordable (the new job he'd recently got), then their finances wouldn't have allowed them to pay their bills and me and I wouldn't have given them the loan. It's not a loan if you're fairly positive they can't afford to repay it, it's a donation.
exnavynuke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 08:30 AM   #78
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Rustic23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Lake Livingston, Tx
Posts: 4,107
Quote:
Originally Posted by Car-Guy View Post
So an individual is going to pay someone (give them a gift) to maintain a relationship? Personally, I wouldn't want to maintain a relationship with a family member or friend who didn't "try" to repay a loan I made to them.
While I agree with you, I disagree. Go Figure! I really want the money repaid, and I really think it should be. However, I know it won't. It may be hard for someone to understand, but, if you give it, you never really expect it back. Somehow, for me, that lets me rationalize the situation. If I lend it, I expect it back. I recently gave a relative $4,000. Several weeks later that turned out not enough and they ask to borrow $1,000 more. While I did not say it was a gift, we sent them the money. In our eyes, and in theirs it is different. There was suppose to be a quick repayment in total. That has changed to half now half later, and now down to 20% now and some sort of payment plan. I know it will not be repaid in full. I think they know, and it hurts the relationship on both sides. It's not that the don't want to pay it back, they just can't! 70+, looking for a job, living on some form of SS.

If there are no easy answers to complex problems.
__________________
If it is after 5:00 when I post I reserve the right to disavow anything I posted.
Rustic23 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 08:46 AM   #79
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 73
Hey there Dustymom. You have gotten fantastic advice and I have nothing to offer that would have a different pov so lets talk about something more fun for a moment.

You have sold your house and are waiting for your motorhome to be delivered. ME TOO! I am assuming you will be full timing if you don't have a S&B any longer. ME TOO! Our Newmar Dutch Star is in paint right now and we start our new lifestyle next month.

I just want to offer you my best wishes as you start on your new adventure. I think that sometimes we can feel a bit guilty over our "good fortune" when someone close is struggling. You worked for it, it didn't just happen out of the blue because you are lucky. Help your family by using your planning and organizing skills to put them in contact with the right resources, then enjoy the life you have set up for yourself.
ImaCheesehead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2017, 08:55 AM   #80
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Colorado Mountains
Posts: 3,073
Quote:
Originally Posted by euro View Post
Very tough place to be and there can't be ONE right answer for this. I'll just add, from my own painful experience, that loans to family members more often than not ( FAR more often than not), don't turn out to be "loans" at all, but rather they are "gifts". I don't think I'm unique in this, but I have never been paid back by relatives for personal loans - no matter whether they could, or could not afford to pay it back. So, whatever you decide, consider your money gone! If you can live with that and still want to help, then go ahead. If you can't afford to lose the money, don't lend it out.
+1 I have agreed to lend $6k to a friend. He has set up an automatic payment from his bank to repay it. If he does not pay it back, there will be no more financial assistance. From my perspective, that would not end our relationship, but I am in a position where this loan would not affect me financially. I have had this approach to lending money my whole life. Sometimes I am repaid, sometimes not. I have never lent money where it was a financial burden to me.

As an interesting side note, many years ago FIL (an alcoholic) spent quite a bit of time telling me about all the people who had lent him money and that he had never paid them back. He then asked me for a loan. I turned him down. He never asked again. I must say, he was quite up front about his intentions.
Hermit is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
These Maps Show You the Relative Cost of Living in Each Country medelste Life after FIRE 1 02-20-2015 07:09 AM
Early? At 58? Everything's relative. downshift Hi, I am... 6 06-17-2008 01:25 PM
HELP- Financially incompetent 50 year old relative in massive IRS trouble A854321 FIRE and Money 41 09-27-2007 02:59 PM
Thoughts on Relative that's bad with money JDARNELL FIRE and Money 29 12-31-2006 01:07 PM
It's all relative John Galt Life after FIRE 19 02-17-2005 02:20 PM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:58 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.