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As some of you know, my step-father passed away back in May. So Mom's alone. Obviously she hasn't been thinking too clearly since his passing.

I have been attempting to help my mother long distance (I'm in MO, she's in NJ.) She just came down to MO to visit...and brought with her tons of paperwork.

I almost passed out!

Here is what we have:

$5,000 in CC Debt - none with less than 17.99%
$1,210 owed to the funeral home - 23% interest
$700 in Gas Cards - 23% interest
$3,000 to a buildin contractor
$700 in medical bills

The Vets Admin says my stepdad was overpaid and wants $2,700 back.
The State of NJ wants $3,000 back.

I can't say I am lost, just overwhelmed. It took me four hours tonight just to sort through all the bills. (Good Lord, they have 3 Cap One cards!)

Where do I start? So far the state and VA aren't garnishing wages, but I am afraid that that will happen if we don't do something soon. Mom has NO savings, NO money for retirement, NO assets and (to top it off) is a public school teacher.

One of her CC's is already at the collection agency. The others have minimum balances that would give George Soros a stroke. She is approximately 2 months behing on everything but her car lease -(Don't even ask!) -and her general monthlies.

I was wondering where exactly do I start? I know about the CC's, but how do I handle the government agencies?

Wondering if I was learning the wrong way to use credit by example when I was growin up
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