$77,391.48 Of New Debt And Zero Money To Pay It Off!

New $77,391.48 Debt, I feel Hopeless!

Our story of debt has been long and well documented on my blog. I did have a plan to get everything paid off by the next, 2020 tax refund, then possibly use the 2021 tax refund to put down a deposit on a house, to finally get on the property ladder. That is now not going to happen, with this added $77,391.48 of student loan debt that my wife has accrued over the past 8 years. We cannot afford to make a $644.93 payment for the next 10 years, right now, we have $68.06 remaining in our checking account, with eight more days until the next payday, more than likely having to lean on a credit card to make it to next Friday.

I’m going to be honest and say that my relationship with my wife is severely strained right now. The majority of my debt is debt that I took on, getting personal loans to cover my wife’s credit card debt as her Discover card payment was out of control, each minimum payment was over 90% interest. The idea was to consolidate all the debt into a single payment, but one year later, in addition to the loan payment of $304.30, we have amassed another $9,615.89 in credit card debt, and I feel like there is no hope!

I am truly at the point where I feel I need to split from my wife, live as cheaply as I can, so I can get myself out of the $18,782.78 of debt I am personally liable for. I love my wife dearly, but these constant financial struggles and debt issues are having a very negative effect on me, personally and my relationship with my wife, and dare I say the kids feel the negativity too, this volatile situation is no good for anyone.

Moving back to the new $77,391.48 of Erin’s student debt, she has been working on this bachelor’s degree for six years, before seemingly giving up on it in 2018, and now the forbearance on the loan has expired, and she is on the hook for almost $80,000 of debt with a monthly payment of $645. And you know the worst thing, Erin has accrued all this debt and still does not have a degree, and with her deteriorating health is unlikely to ever earn enough income to cover these loan repayments.

I know that wage garnishment is likely, and any future tax refunds will be garnished. The only question is, can they garnish my income? as I did not sign anything personally in relation to Erin’s student loan.

Wage garnishment in Kansas is 15% of your disposable income for student loans in default. I thought that disposable income would be what you have leftover after paying all your bills. But, no, disposable income is considered anything left over after the government has taken their cut, i.e. taxes, social security, and Medicare, so in the simplest of terms, 100% of our net income is considered disposable income.

I think that I have answered my own question in regard to my liability for Erin’s student debt, I am not liable for her debt, unless I cosigned, which I did not. The only exception to this is if I lived in a community property or marital property state, which Kansas is not one of, at least not currently. If we moved to Texas, my wife’s home state, like Erin wanted to, I would be on the hook for the debt as much as Erin would be.

I have until the end of March to decide whether I want to renew our lease on the house we currently live in. The only decision is, do I stick with my wife, try to work through this together or do I split from her, to get myself in a better financial place for my own mental wellbeing, and work out a custody agreement for our kids. On this day, I don’t know which way I will turn, when that fork in the road comes.

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