People under the age of 18 are subject to many ways in which they become at risk for debt troubles. In many cases, these minors are unknowingly a part of a debt they didn’t incur or are held liable for a debt they cannot legally be pursued to pay. In any case, it is important to understand the unique risks minors face with debt troubles.
Protecting Our Kids
Medical debt is a real problem in America today, and it isn’t just the elderly or of age that face these problems. Children and minors are facing medical debt problems now more than ever before. There are cases in which a parent signed an acknowledgement agreeing to be liable for the payment of medical services for their child, never paying the debt down the line. When this happens, creditors can hold the debt for a period of time and resume collections at a later point. If the creditor attempts to collect on the debt once the minor becomes of legal adult age, they could find themselves in the middle of a debt collection lawsuit. Luckily, many state laws agree that the now adult is not responsible for the debt because at the time of accumulation the minor “lacks the capacity to enter into a contract.” It is on these grounds that a lawyer could have the debts dismissed without issue.
Another area of debt troubles for minors has grown in recent years in the areas of identity and bankruptcy fraud. In these situations, a person uses the social security number of a minor child to accumulate debts with or without payment. If the debts enter collections, a person could refuse to pay, leaving the minor child responsible for the debt on paper. Generally, these debts are incapable of being pursued for the same reason as the medical debts become incapable of collection. In a bankruptcy fraud situation, a minor’s personal information is used to have debts discharged in a bankruptcy court. If the case is successfully dismissed, the minor would find their credit history has been marked unknowingly when they become of legal age.
As a Dallas bankruptcy attorney, it is a personal mission to ensure that people are actively protecting themselves and their children against debt troubles. Whether you or your child is experiencing fraudulent or l legitimate debt troubles, it is important to seek counsel from an experienced attorney right away.