Any way to stop monthly interest charges on balance of difficult child's unused credit card?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by scent of cedar, May 30, 2013.

  1. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Our daughter has recently been diagnosed with a "serious and pervasive" mental illness. We had been paying either the balance or the interest fees on her credit card until about two months ago. The account has been suspended. Does anyone know how we might stop monthly interest charges from continuing? It is one of those cards with a very high interest rate. I did find a phone number for their collections department this morning. Should I call them? Is there a law regarding situations like this? A few months back, difficult child received a large sum of money. She could have paid the credit card off at that time, but did not.

    difficult child is homeless, and very ill.

  2. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I don't know...but MAYBE. (Note: Big maybe!) About 1.5 years ago....difficult child claimed (one just never knows for sure) that she got a credit card to this store because they asked her to apply for one because she was applying for a job there. When the card came in, she said she bought one thing and then left on her dresser and forgot about it. No one paid on it for months. Lots of charges accumulated. She said she hadn't seen it for months and it was probably stolen (she has some, let's just say "dishonest" friends). It was for a clothing only store and I did not notice any new clothing that difficult child had been wearing (still/one NEVER knows for sure). I called them up and told them the story. Told them that difficult child was on disability and was not working. And that should never in a million years been issued a credit card when she has no credit history, no job, is on disability, no savings account and no way of paying. Plus, she was forced to apply for the card and she didn't want it. I said I was a "relative," and would pay them a small portion of the bill if they dropped the entire matter and let it go. They AGREED, but said they would file a report on her credit. To myself, I said GREAT! Wonderful!!!! That is how we handled it. They KNEW it was a lost cause and to get any money was a win for them. I told difficult child that I would NOT be doing this again. She hasn't done anything like it again (one never knows for sure). I pray that she learned a lesson (you know...). Sigh. Bottom can try to negotiate a partial payment to drop the matter...making it very clear to them that she is and will forever be unable to pay any of this bill/that it is a lost cause/and this is a one time and final offer. Make it clear that you are NOT responsible for her financial matters, but will do this as a favor/gift...this one time, etc. and it is their one and only opportunity to see ANY money from this account, a partial payment is better than nothing and you want the bills STOPPED. They are free to report HER to a credit agency (don't offer this, but they will say it...and so what/really). I was VERY polite, told it like it was and firm. Good luck with this.
  3. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Thank you, Nomad. That is a really good idea.

  4. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    contact the credit agency to find out how to attach a letter to the report. write what you have said and insist that it be attached to your credit report. Creditors who see it will know that the high interest cards are a scam and this was fraudulently charged to you. It may not change the number of your credit score, but it WILL change how many groups look at that score. Having worked on the merchant side of credit cards for a bank, I can tell you that letters like this can make a big difference.

    Barbara, before you talk to them, contact a consumer credit counselling agency. You NEED to know how many outstanding debts she has and what amounts owed are BEFORE you start making offers. Once you send them money from your account, SOME groups will argue that you are then responsible for her debts. One way to avoid that is to put the money into her account and make her send a payment to them that very minute from her account via cashiers check, money order from the bank she uses, or to give her the cash to get a money order to pay the account. Do NOT send ANYTHING to the creditor with your name, account info, phone number or other info. ONLY her info. Even if you tell them you are NOT responsible for her debts, they WILL attach your info to her account and hound you. I had to get really ugly with one creditor when they got info on my inlaws and tried hounding them over accounts that we did NOT open or owe. It was ugly and hard to stop but we did eventually. My inlaws tried to talk to them, and then left their number for a supervisor to call them back and it all spiralled from there because the supervisor attached their number to our account and called them a few times a week to try to get $$$ out of them, even after we proved we did NOT owe them anything and they agreed and left us alone!

    So do NOT give them your info. Tell them you are calling as her representative, and that is ALL they need. A consumer credit counseling agency may be your best help with this, and will at least be able to tell you how to get them to take a settlement. She likely has debts you don't know about, so before you settle with ANY of them, get copies of her credit report from all 3 agencies. You will then know what you are dealing with. It is an important step if you are to truly help her.
    Lasted edited by : Jul 10, 2013
  5. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Thank you, susiestar. I wondered whether we wouldn't get into something like this if I took any action.

    I will leave well enough alone.

    Second question: We paid difficult child's balance off for her a few times. We then started paying only the interest. Then, we stopped. Our payment information remained on the site. Now, I cannot access the account because it has been suspended. Are we in any financial danger because that payment information (routing number, name of bank) is still on her account?


    You are right. I had best call a credit counseling agency.

    Thanks so much, Susiestar.
  6. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Iguess we were lucky. I spoke with a supervisor. I was a broken record and said over and over again that I was a simply 'a relative' doing this as a one time favor and was not and do not assume any financial responsibility or any kind of responsibility of any kind for difficult child and would only agree to send them the partial payment if they understood this and agreed to cease sending any more bills to difficult child. I was very careful and made her agree to everything. I don't recall if it wawas recorded. Her big threat was she was reporting difficult child to the credit agencies...I said nothing, as I could care less. Bu I did not have this in writing, so after reading the other wise posts here, I see I was lucky. My credit is in fine shape.thank goodness. You can NOT truly trust these people and you can never trust a difficult child!