Hello CB community,
As a newbie, I'm not sure where this thread appropriately belongs, but thought I would start here. I have a difficult financial situation that I could use some pointers on.
Here's my situation:
I'm basically trying to dig myself out of a huge financial hole that's more the result of my parents' actions than mine.
Over the last 4 years in college, I've accumulated a credit card debt balance of about $2900 (currently, but average balance has been about $3700 for the last year) on a $4000 limit. Also, I have a joint Chase bank account with my father who has also racked up a few thousand in debt on 2 other cards, which have been revoked with remaining balances. The worst part is that these 2 cards are under MY name and SSN (without my permission), but I never used the cards, so I assume it was for him and the rest of the family. According to some free credit score reports, I have about 4-5 cards under my name (most of which are inactive now). Needless to say, my credit score is pretty shot (619) and I'm only 24.
For the last few years, I've only made the minimum payments each month (and taking finance charge hits of ~$30/month) on my personal Chase CC, and its just an ordinary Chase Rewards Card (not the Freedom one). But now, with a new job and a recent influx of cash, I can pay off the balance in full within a few months. I have made zero payments toward the other cards because my parents said they would take care of that. They've been making minimum payments on the closed cards.
For added fire, I also have about $30,000 in student loans, also just making minimum monthly payments on those as of right now.
So those are the numbers for my situation:
Credit card 1 - debt of $2900 on $4000 limit (active)
Credit card 2 - debt of $920 on $2500 limit (revoked, parent opened)
Credit card 3 - debt of $1634 on $3500 limit (revoked, parent opened)
Credit Score - 619
Student loans - ~$30000
Cash cushion of a few thousand
I was unemployed for about 7 months (luckily had government benefits so income/spending stay leveled...everything basically just put on hold) until last month.
I have a solid income now, but because of my parents actions in the past, I'm starting off in a huge hole. My personal banker told me to pay off the revoked cards asap, cause those really hurt. I intend to do that in the next 3 months. But my roommate said that it would take YEARS before I can get to a 700 score.
Actions I've taken thus far: paid down my personal credit card debt to $2900 (and can probably add another $1000 within the week). opened my own only account at chase. stopped all savings and 401k contributions.
So my questions:
1) Will this take years to resolve? If not, how long?
2) Is there any way for me to talk to Experian (or any of the other credit agencies) about my situation and have them change my score even just a bit?
3) What are the legal implications for my parents (was it legal for them to take out cards in my name? I dont intend to sue them obviously...but dont want them to get in trouble)?
4) What are my options to address this situation & bring up my score? I really want to start applying for better rewards cards.
5) What else should I be worried about?
Thank you all very much for taking the time to read all that.
Seeking Advice for a Sticky Debt/Horrible Credit Score Situation
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