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My Sister Used Her Teen Daughters' Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..........

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My Sister Used Her Teen Daughters' Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..........

My sister used her teen daughters', my nieces credit for utilities & furniture and more, ruining their credit before they even had any!

 

I'm trying to help my nieces, who are online students at UCF and working, but have been turned down for opening a checking account, due to the damage their mother caused to their credit, and were actually having thier paychecks depositied to a Walmart prepaid debit card.

 

So, I personally took them to Bank Of America and after not applying for a checking account for a couple of years, they were able to open up a student core checking account, where now, they both have their paychecks deposited and are doing fine.

 

However, I made certain that the home address linked to their BOA checking account was my mother's address, their grandmother and not their home address, as they both still live with their mother, my sister.

 

As a former Navy man, I told them to never tell their mother about their BOA checking accounts, as loose lips, sink ships, and she can easily manipulate them into whatever she wants.

 

To make a long story short, they have had these checking accounts for going on eight months and both are interested in getting their on place and being that our home town has two major Div-1 colleges, at one time, the nation's forth rank communtiy college, there are a ton of student housing, where they could co-op, paying $399 a month plus utilities, but they need credit.

 

I've spoken to them about secured credit cards, credit builder loans via local credit unions and a Self Lender account, but like most teenagers, they lose focus or interest in building credit, especially since their credit was ruined by furniture companies and late utility payments.

 

Now, they don't want to get their mother in trouble, but if they go down to the utility company and tell them the truth, the power would be cut off for them, their mother and their little brother. Nor, do they want to tell the two furniture companies that their mother fradulantly used their social security numbers for furniture that was eventually repossessed, primarily because they don't want their mother to go to jail.

 

So, they both considered just paying off the furniture bill and more, but as soon as they do that, their mother will simply do the same thing again!

 

What can I do to help them.

 

By the way, my sister found out about the BOA checking accounts, but my nieces somehow, have yet to allow her to ruin that too.

 

My fear is, I'd help them repair their credit and eventually obtain unsecured credit cards, only for their mother, my sister, to manipulates them with pitiful and sob stories about needing this or that and forces them into credit card debt.

Message 1 of 8
7 REPLIES 7
Established Contributor

Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughter's Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..


@CCALBERT1358 wrote:

 

I've spoken to them about secured credit cards, credit builder laons via local credit unions and a Self Lender account, but like most teenagers, they lose focus or interest in building credit.....

.

.

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My fear is, I help them repair their credit and eventually obtain unsecured credit cards, only for their mother, my sister, manipulates them with pitiful and sob stories about needing this or that and forces them into credit card debt.


 

It sounds like the conditions for responsible credit management are just not there. I would definitely avoid credit cards or a loan at this moment in time. 











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Message 2 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughter's Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..

Have your Nieces at least LOCK their credit reports so no further damage can be done without their knowledge.

 

I would at least get them to get a secured card with the lowest limit possible to get their files started ... 

 

That is a rough story ... sounds like you want to help them so bad but due to the circumstances, it's a tough road ahead.

 

I would suggest the OpenSky card with $200 deposit, at least they get cards without the inquiry and they can use it for GAS or Food and slowly build their profiles.

 

 

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Message 3 of 8
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Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughter's Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..


It sounds like the conditions for responsible credit management are just not there. I would definitely avoid credit cards or a loan at this moment in time. 


I wholeheartedly agree. Don't poke the bear. The girls have to be completely onboard with protecting their credit and they just aren't ready for that yet. 

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Message 4 of 8
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Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughters' Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..

First off, are your nieces and nephew safe living with their mom?

 

It's hard to imagine a mother doing something like that without other problems and first things first make sure all the kids are safe.  I hope I am not overstepping but that's my first concern.

 

Next I am thinking maybe the girls should file an identity theft report.  I forgot where I did it online what government agency but Google it see what comes up.  I had some identity theft where some random person filed unemployment in my name.  (Just got notification he is now serving time.  I don't know him just a random victim).  

 

Next it sure seems like negligence for anyone to give credit to your nieces in the past because they did not have income or at least not signifcant enough income to afford it.  

 

Have they looked at their credit reports and disputed everything that is not really theirs?  Disputing it as not yours does not mean they are going to lockup the mom.  If they have exhausted that path then file a complaint with the CFPB https://www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint/ against the 3 credit reporting agencies and each creditor listed on their account simply saying "it's not mine I was 15 when this was opened or whatever the case may be."

 

I also wonder what debt they are legally responsible for if it was obtained while they were under 18.

 

Also please do not forget to have them check CHEX Systems.  I think you can get a free report.  They should also put a block on CHEX Systems.  If their mom opened bank accounts in their name that could be a mess too and need to be disputed.  This really is only applicable to bank accounts not a credit score.

 

Good luck and keep us posted.

Message 5 of 8
Contributor

Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughters' Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..

No, their safety is just fine.

 

Their mother, my sister is a very good mother, just over-reaches with trying to live outside of her means to impress others, the best apartment/condo, the best cars, clothes and furniture, instead of living within her means.

 

When your spending habits forces you to work two and three jobs and still can't pay your bills, then milk off of your daughters, getting the electric bill switched into their name, is what bothers me.

 

My sister will work, but she is extremely poor when it comes to finances.

Message 6 of 8
Regular Contributor

Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughters' Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..


@CCALBERT1358 wrote:

No, their safety is just fine.

 

Their mother, my sister is a very good mother, just over-reaches with trying to live outside of her means to impress others, the best apartment/condo, the best cars, clothes and furniture, instead of living within her means.

 

When your spending habits forces you to work two and three jobs and still can't pay your bills, then milk off of your daughters, getting the electric bill switched into their name, is what bothers me.

 

My sister will work, but she is extremely poor when it comes to finances.


I feel really bad for your nieces. Your sister sounds like a loving mother, but with poor impulse control. I am sure she loves her daughters, but she's not thinking ahead about their future. 

 

I can see why the girls wouldn't want to rat out their mother and have her go to jail, if she's basically a loving--but incredibly irresponsible--person. I am sure someone else has more complete advice, but all I can think of now is to just do "damage control." That the girls have checking accounts that the mom hasn't been able to wheedle out of them yet is good news. But I guess we're talking about baby steps. Mom has to be hit by a clue-by-four and realize that she's damaging her daughters with her shenanigans. Daughters have to understand how important credit is before they have direct control over their own. If they lose focus as you're trying to educate them, they aren't ready yet for the responsibility--not with their mother potentially breathing down their necks! Forget that!

 

Edit: I forgot to add, God bless you for helping your nieces.

 

I was also going to say, maybe the girls could get started with some modest little store cards, like Victoria's Secret or Old Navy or something. But based on what you've told us about your sister (their mother), it probably wouldn't go well. Smiley Sad

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Message 7 of 8
Frequent Contributor

Re: My Sister Used Her Teen Daughters' Credit For Utilities & Furniture. I'm Helping My Nieces..

There is really only so much you can do - and so much they can do if they want to protect their mother.

Family situations are always touchy. You can offer advice and wisdom if they solicit it, but I wouldn’t meddle too much or become pushy. They’re adults and this is really between them and their mother.

If you can lead them to ways to build credit and get positive tradelines on their report, that’s awesome - if that’s what they want. Again, don’t be pushy. That’s where your involvement should end though, IMO.
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