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Let me just start by saying that I know we have been financial idiots, and this past year has taught us a lot and we are really working hard to never get in this situation again. We were really dumb with our finances, and now here we are

My husband lost his very well paying job in February of last year. He was unemployed for a few months before finding his new job, which is currently paying a fraction of his old job. He's in sales with mostly commission/bonus, and a small salary. We've been pretty financially destitute since last March when we went through our small savings. His job has amazing oppurtunities and he will soon become a city manager,and he is going to be staying with a friend in the city we used to live in, 2 hours away, five days a week, so that he has a lot more oppurtunity to sell, since we had to move back to my hometown and stay with my parents for four months after he lost his job and he's run out of places to sell here. Anyways, the point is, his closing ratio is so high, we can realistically expect him to be able to double or triple our income after next month.

I've been a stay at home mom since our 2 year old was born, and he lost his job when I was pregnant with our now 7 month old baby. I am going to school fulltime online to get my B.S. in Accounting, but without my degree, I can't find a job that would pay more than daycare, so for now, we are stuck with one income. I have at least 3 more years of school to go.

My husband bought a stupidly expensive vehicle about 3 days before he lost his job and we had to call the bank to have them voluntarily repossess it.
We now owe $20,000 to the collections agency who bought the debt, and I need to pull up our credit reports, but I would estimate we have at least $6000 in other debt in collections. (credit cards we couldn't pay on, and medical debt).

I'm not concerned about the $6000. I know we could work with a credit counseling agency and get that debt consolidated, but obviously the huge issue is the $20,000 for the car. Currently they have excepted 3 months of $100 a month and acccepted a payment plan for another 6 months of $100 a month. We've been paying this to avoid them from suing us and forcing us into bankruptcy because we can't afford a garnishment. But that's not even paying the interest. I know that when you consolidate your debt, they want the plan to be no longer than 5 years. $26,000 in debt over five years would be a payment of $433 a month, not including interest. Since the collections agency for the car has already excepted another 6 months of $100 a month, we have another 6 months to see if my husband's income improves enough to be able to pay that amount. In the meantime, I've finally stopped dodging collections calls and am setting up payment plans with them, as we are expecting a decent tax return plus my student loan money next month, and quite probably an increase in my husband's income.

What complicates matters is that my husband has an employee stock option plan, and will be offered an employee stock purchase plan in a couple of months, and we would hate to lose any proceeds that eventually come from this. Also, we would have to wait a year anyways to file bankruptcy, because we owe my parents $4000 from the time we were living with them, and from them helping to pay our lawyer for a lawsuit that we have been working on for our ex slumlord since last year (it's a long story). And we have promised to pay them $2000 from our tax refund and they really need the money.

So I guess I may have answered my own question while typing this all out. If we have to wait a year anyways to file, because of having to pay my parents, there's a good chance that in that year, we can pay off most of the $6000 or so of the other debt, and just keep making small payments to the $20,000 for the car in order to keep them from suing us and garnishing my husband's wages, and at that point we could probably afford a debt consolidation program. Does any of that sound like a better idea than bankruptcy?
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