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credit & debt

Declaring Bankruptcy, Reluctantly

After dealing with her husband's out-of-control debt, Amy Smith went to bankruptcy court. <b>As told to Joan Goldwasser</b>

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But you had to sell your house? I had to surrender our house and my husband's motorcycle, which was in my name. I kept my car. I thought that when you declared bankruptcy you had to live in a tent and drive a Yugo. It wasn't as bad as that.

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What is your current situation? I pay as I go. I have my employer take money out of my paycheck for my 401(k), and my only payments are for a car loan and a Capital One credit card with a $750 limit, which I pay off every two weeks when I get paid. My credit score went up 120 points in five months. And my divorce is almost final.

Do you think you did the right thing? You feel you are the scum of the earth if you can't pay your bills. But when I went to court, there were a lot of people there, so I realized this is happening to others, too. Afterward, it was as though a big weight had been lifted off my shoulders. Now I can move forward instead of being stuck.

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