It’s been quite a year, in court, out of court, blogging, talking, consulting. Since I started putting my thoughts down early in the year a few themes have emerged, themes I’m sure I’ll continue to follow into 2016.
- Perhaps the single, overriding theme in my writing and in consultations, is this – ‘you’re not the first one this has happened to, you won’t be the last.’ Debt, debt collection, foreclosures, repossessions and more have occurred since mankind invented currency. From the Knights Templar to Mexico in 1862, debt has shaped our history, affected everyone from your next door neighbor to Ulysses S. Grant to Charles Dickens. I harp on this, and will continue to harp on it, because it’s really vital for my clients – past, present, future – to understand and accept that there is no stigma to being where they are when I meet them.
- It’s important to ‘not go it alone.’ That logically follows the point above – too many people who need the help feel they don’t deserve it. That they somehow owe it to the banks and society to let whatever’s going to happen, happen. That is not remotely true.
- Some people go it alone because they think the Internet will guide them through – whatever. This is one of the banes of my profession. My quick response to Internet ‘advice’ – if Ben Affleck movies can garner high ratings, well, then, anything’s possible on the Net.
- Many, many Internet sites initially offer free advice. As Tom Waits says (sings) “There’s always free cheddar in the mousetrap baby.”
- The later I come into a case because of any combination of the above, the fewer options we have.
- Every once in a while I run across a situation that I know will result in future clients. Online Fantasy Sports is one of those.
- The Presidential race hit the full time news cycle in June with the high visibility of Donald Trump – a man who has been through four bankruptcies. In a few of the debates (so far) other candidates have tried to use that to shame him (as if that were possible to begin with). In the meantime, Marco Rubio has been scrambling to hide the type of financial problems that just makes him one of the rest of us. I’m very much hoping that their stories are shared in a more constructive manner going forward.
Looking forward to 2016 and many more posts. Happy New Year, and thanks for being a reader.