We saw a debt negotiator this morning. His wife is an attorney. We were referred to him by my child’s social worker (our oldest son is autistic). This coulple also has a daughter who is autistic, so they can understand some of the aspects of our lives that others might not….

Anyhow, we discussed three options….Chapter 7, Chapter 13, and debt negotiation and repayment (this last would involve a large lump sum payment, which I was not happy about….as I don’t know when/how I can get back to paid employment and I am trying to preserve assets).

We have no home (we rent) but I do have retirement funds/college funds for the boys, and some non-retirement assets.

I’ve been thinking, once my youngest is in Kindergarten (full-day) I could try to do call-center work from home (customer service on the telephone) from 9 to 2. This couldn’t happen until September, though.

So, he said that my husband could file Chapter 13 as an individual and that they would ask about my income (currently 0.00) but not my assets. They would also ask about income versus expenses and they would (hopefully) also take into account that we have a pretty severely disabled child (6 years old, non-verbal, not toilet-trained, tests at about a 1-year level).

I brought along a draft budget that I thought was more realistic than the one prepared by the MMI counselor (he proposed an $860.00 a month payment, which I do not think would be do-able….and would leave us worse off than ever…).

I will pay for the cost of the bankruptcy….probably about 3K-4K. My husband says he will pay me (us) back. We’ll see. He did say that he would find a second job.

I seem to recall that, with the Chapter 13, we would make a monthly payment to a third party….about $300 or so, let’s say.

So….that’s where we are right now. As always…..comments/feedback….always welcome…..

It sounds like a plan. Good of you to go and speak to the counselor and get some path to follow.

$300 a month repayment sounds reasonable, if you can afford it.