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Author Topic: Can financial problems ruin chances for student loans?
MTB Babe
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Icon 5 posted January 20, 2004 05:57      Profile for MTB Babe   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
OK I am trying to get into grad school for this coming fall. If I get accepted, I will need student loans to pay for it. However, a few months ago, my mom maxed out 3 credit cards in my name. Last week I visited home and found a letter from a collection agency after me because she made late payment. She is ruining my credit. Can this prevent me from getting student loans for school? [Frown] [Confused] [Frown]

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GMx

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2004 10:33      Profile for GMx     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Why does your Mom have 3 credit cards in your name?
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MTB Babe
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Icon 9 posted January 20, 2004 11:05      Profile for MTB Babe   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
She has some family land in her native country that she's trying to fix up to sell. She needed an exorbitant amount of money, and couldn't get a loan so she went behind my back to pay for it all. She keeps saying she'll pay it off soon but it won't be before this fall [Frown]

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Samir: No one in this country can ever pronounce my name right. It's not that hard: Na-ee-ana-jaad. Nayanajaad.
Michael Bolton: Yeah, well at least your name isn't Michael Bolton.

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Just_Jess_B

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Icon 4 posted January 20, 2004 11:27      Profile for Just_Jess_B   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
[warning]

A painful lesson for you to have learned. It's going to take about a decade to get out from under the repercussions of it once you actually pay off the amount. How do I know? Because just this year I have a positive credit score after my two-year first marriage which destroyed my credit and put me on the Chex system.

I'm not sure what it will do to your credit score regarding your student loan, but I guarantee car, home, and other credit loans are in jeopardy. Do something immediately to get her away from it, get to a Credit Counseling service (the free ones, not a per-pay one), and fix it quickly before your credit gets decimated.

Also, don't co-sign a checking account with her. You can lose the capability to have one, yourself. Again, just this year I should be able to get a checking account. For SEVEN years, I couldn't get one anywhere except one bank, which charged disgustingly exorbitant fees for everything and put in withdrawals before deposits. They would hold deposits the whole 5 days, even if it was cash (which I thought was illegal). So I haven't had an account for 5 years.

Do what you will, but having experienced devastation, had I not met WinterSolstice when I did, I never would have been able to dig out of the horrible mess I had gotten myself into. Having to cash paychecks at check-cashing places with a 10%+ fee because there's no branch of the business' bank in the area and you don't have an account because you're on Chex really, really SUCKS.

[/warning]

You've been warned.

Jess

EDIT: as a final thought, did she get the cards in your name with or without your permission?

If you agreed, it's your credit that's done with. If she didn't, that's fraud, and as much as it's sad to have someone you love go to jail, if you don't, it will be considered that you gave permission.

Either way, this is not going to be pleasant. Once you've gone over to collection, they'll start putting liens on paychecks and property.

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Stereo

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2004 12:21      Profile for Stereo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Now to (try to) answer your question, I must start with a disclaimer:

[disclaimer]I am Canadian and I have no idea if it is the same in the USA.[/disclaimer]

If it is bursary (money you get as a check), no problem, of course. As student loans go, in Canada, the official name is "certified loan certificate", which means the organism giving it acts as a guarantee. If the bank can't get the money back from you, it's gonna go after the organism, who in turn will be after your back. Now, as those loans are actually meant for people without much money, they shouldn't check your credit rating as wheter to give you one or not. _But_ you may still have to do with higher lending rates due to your bad credit. The best thing to do is to be up-front about your situation and ask.

Of course, if the student loans you are talking about are offered by banks, it's 'too bad, you're on your own.'

[joking] Then again, you could go the way the 'switch to Canada' guy went, and have your credit record wiped clean.[/joking]

Hope this help!

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Eppur, si muove!

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Cap'n Vic

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2004 15:39      Profile for Cap'n Vic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
This is fraud/theft. I'd call the cops. What kind of mother steals from their kids??

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Orpheus
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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2004 15:46      Profile for Orpheus     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ouch! [Frown]

I don't really know if they look into your credit record. I'd be inclined to say they're not terribly stringent on the credit history just because college students don't always have the best of credit records. That and I know one friend who got herself into a few thousand dollars' debt and is still getting loans. Good luck!

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my cats make me crazy

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Beth
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Icon 9 posted January 20, 2004 19:30      Profile for Beth   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Wow, that really bites. Whether or not your mother had "permission" to access your credit cards, that's a terrible thing to do. The whole credit system is seriously harsh. One late payment and they want your head on a platter.

I don't know anything about student loans in the USA, but I'd recommend talking to someone at student aid ASAP. Also, it'd be a good idea to talk to student services/financial aid/whoever at your school. They might have some advice about dealing with student loan problems.

Good luck!

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2004 20:43      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
/me wanders off, shaking head in disbelief

The crap they put up with in 'the land of the free'.

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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MTB Babe
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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 05:56      Profile for MTB Babe   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
My mother had NO PERMISSION to open those credit cards in my name. I just found out today that she took a $1300 dollar check my dad had written FOR MY SISTER and now my sister can't buy books to do her homework since my mom took all the money from my sister's checking account!!! [Frown] I CAN"T act legally against my mom...I don't know what to do... [Confused] [Frown] [Confused]

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Samir: No one in this country can ever pronounce my name right. It's not that hard: Na-ee-ana-jaad. Nayanajaad.
Michael Bolton: Yeah, well at least your name isn't Michael Bolton.

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TMBWITW,PB

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 06:25      Profile for TMBWITW,PB     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Like it's been said before, if you don't act legally against your mom you can and probably will be held responsible for the debt. If all you want is damage control then since the credit cards are in your name call the companies and cancel them. Then call the credit bureaus (eg. Equifax) and let them know you suspect fraudulent activity and no more credit cards should be opened in your name. To really cover your butt let them know that you are applying for student loans, but that's it! Hopefully that will prevent anything worse from happening.

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"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye."
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Doco

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 07:16      Profile for Doco   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I've got to second what a lot of the others have been saying - you need to take some action.

However, it doesn't have to be legal action directly against your mother. I can understand that isn't practical to do.

You should get yourself to a credit help agency (again not the fee based ones - those are the worst scam artists). Talk to them about how to close out these accounts, and seperate them from your name. Check with your financial aid office they might have someone to talk to, or can point you to the right agency. When you find someone who you can trust there - please tell them the whole story. If you start hiding stuff from them they won't be able to help you effectively.

It seems that most of the time when someone has an identity theft problem - its so the a-hole can open a couple of credit cards in your name. The police almost never pursue these guys, as the accounts get closed and the credit card companies just push the cost back on the merchants. Yes that sucks for the merchants, but it seems that is the way it normally works. The real problem gets away because for the merchants it isn't worth it to try and pursue the perp who even if they catch won't have any money they can lay their hands on and in the mean time they've spent a bunch of cash on lawyers, hounding the cops, etc. My point to this whole rant is that your mom might not get in that much "trouble" other than having her credit score ruined if you push the accounts under her name where they rightfully belong anyway.

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Stereo

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 07:41      Profile for Stereo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Maybe I'm thinking too far, but have you checked if the 'selling property' is really true or if it's a coverup? I have the feeling a mother wouldn't jeopardize her children's future just to sell a property. She's pushing her two children into bankrupcy; chances are her own financial records are below zero too, and she's doing all this behind everybody's back. Sound awfully like a gambling problem to me.

Either that or your mother has fallen prey to a scammer who promised to sell her property in her name (while not having the legitimacy to do so), and only ask for more money while doing nothing to sell.

For short, the underlying story looks highly suspicious to me. Confront her; she may need professionnal help (psychiatric or legal, depending on what's really going on).

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Grey_girl

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 11:11      Profile for Grey_girl     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
MTB, I know this is a difficult situation for you, but something needs to be done. First, the cards are in your name - cancel them, if you haven't already. Then contact the credit reporting bureaus as has already been suggested. Lastly, I know you don't want to pursue legal action against your mother, but this is fraud and a crime. Something is going on here, and she does need help.
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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 15:07      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Stereo is right, something doesn't add up here. Sounds like your mother needs some serious help and fast. Try talking to her, find out if there's anything more to it than she's revealed so far. If that doesn't work, you probably don't have many further options than cancelling cards and pursuing legal action.

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6 weeks to go!

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 15:36      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Mom or not, she stole your identity, and you need it back. Unfortunately, the only way to do that is through legal action. You can get your record cleaned up once identity theft is shown/proven. One of the students in my current lab went through this with a perfect stranger. It sucked for him; it's gotta be worse when it's your own flesh and blood. But please, for the sake of yourself and your sister, you must go to the cops/feds/whoever is in charge of situations like these.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 16:55      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ok, so the whole 'selling a property in the old country' story sounds fishy to me, and I'm inclined to agree that it could well be a cover for a drug/alcohol/gambling problem, but would you people really put the cops onto your mother???

Come on, that's a bit harsh, don't you think?

(Ok, I do remember advocating someone put the cops onto their brother a while back over a similar story, but that's different. Or maybe I just don't like my brother. Who says I have to be consistent anyway?)

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 17:04      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I don't think there's much room left for me to comment on this matter, as everyone's made so many good comments so far, so instead, I'd like to make a cautionary warning to people:
Please be *really* careful about how you use/distribute personally identifiable information about yourself - specifically your Social Security Number (or foreign equivalent [a government Unique Identification Number]). These days, I do not put my SSN on anything that does not absolutely require it by law. Disclosure is typically optional in many cases, such as on my grad school application, where they really just wanted it for convenience.

When I turned 18, I went to my bank, and tried to open a checking account. On that day, I learned that I had a bad credit rating, because someone opened a checking account with my SSN (but thankfully, not my name), and proceded to bounce checks off this account. Luckily, I had a very good standing with my bank, having done business with them for many years (I think my parents actually opened a savings account for me when I was somewhere around 8 or so), and they knew me pretty well, and opened it anyway. I then had to go through crap to contact credit agencies, and present them with the information that I had, and contact the bank through which this bad account was opened, and get them all to talk to each other and make it all work out. In hindsight, I didn't actually go through too much hassle, as the SSN-only part was my saving grace. As far as I can tell, I think my SSN was stolen when I got my learner's permit at the DMV, because that was the only time in the near past in which I had disclosed this number. Of course, this is a case in which I *had* to do this, but I'm sure similar events happen to other people when the give out their SSN unnecessarily. Recently, it made the news that someone in the DMV I went to, as well as 3 employees in the city, were arrested for fraudulent production of driver's licenses, and I kind of wonder - could this have been the person who caused all this crap to happen to me? But what's past is past, and just this month, I noticed that my credit line on my credit card has gone up again, so my worries are gone - but I'm still extremely protective of my SSN and other personal info.

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 17:20      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
Ok, so the whole 'selling a property in the old country' story sounds fishy to me, and I'm inclined to agree that it could well be a cover for a drug/alcohol/gambling problem, but would you people really put the cops onto your mother???

If my mom stole my identity, yes, I most certainly would. Right after I got over the feeling that I'd been raped, that is. That's the most extreme violation of trust I can think of. I mean for god's sake, she's Mom. She's the one you go to when you need semi-divine intervention!

Don't get me wrong. I love my mother, and if she were in need of funds, I would gladly lend them to her, but only if she asked. Even a bare hint would suffice, but what MTB's facing is pure and simple theft. End of story.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 19:12      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
Ok, so the whole 'selling a property in the old country' story sounds fishy to me, and I'm inclined to agree that it could well be a cover for a drug/alcohol/gambling problem, but would you people really put the cops onto your mother???

That's why I suggested trying to talk to her first. If that doesn't do any good, then I can't see many other options, unless you get some professional advice from someone.

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6 weeks to go!

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FatGnome
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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2004 21:42      Profile for FatGnome     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
As to the question about student loans and such look into grants as well from the government. There are tons of these and I have several now to pay for the university I attend. Takes some research and some letter writing and stuff but it is well worth the time you invest. Goverment subsidised loans are good for those that are at a low income level. Loans guarenteed by the government are nice to have. As for the CCard thing get that taken care of ASAP or it could realy hurt you in the future.

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What a complete and utter waste of time to read my Signature don't you think?

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MTB Babe
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Icon 1 posted January 22, 2004 10:54      Profile for MTB Babe   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks soo much for the advice. I written a letter to Equifax to alert them of fraudulent activity in my name, and I plan to talk to my lawyer today for legal advice. This whole situation is ridiculous and I feel sorry for anyone who's been of victim of identity theft or any credit fraud.
I really hope this doesn't affect any student loans I may need for grad school...I hope that maybe I'll have at least some of this mess out of my name before then...

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Samir: No one in this country can ever pronounce my name right. It's not that hard: Na-ee-ana-jaad. Nayanajaad.
Michael Bolton: Yeah, well at least your name isn't Michael Bolton.

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