Ask Paul: I want to travel overseas then declare bankruptcy


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Q. I am 35 years old, single with no children and have about $21,000 in personal loans that have now been sold by the bank to a debt agency.

I was out of work for a few years and the debt got out of hand. I feel that due to earning only about $33,000 a year at the moment, going bankrupt would be my best option.

Do you think this would be my best choice? If not, what do you suggest?

bankruptcy debt personal loan bankrupt debt agreement debt agency paul clitheroe ask paul askpaul money magazine advice

I have about $8000 in super and have no savings.

I plan to go overseas soon to visit family I haven't seen for many years and would like to see older family as they might die in the time period of bankruptcy. I would be applying for bankruptcy once I got back from the trip. - Paul

A. Crikey Paul, I really do have to say that I am not overly delighted to hear that you would spend a fair bit of money going overseas and then go bankrupt.

Going bankrupt is far from ideal.

What I would really like you to do is to phone the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007.

It is a confidential free service.

Have a chat with a professional debt counsellor and see whether there is a better way of doing this.

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Paul Clitheroe AM is founder and editorial adviser of Money magazine. He is one of Australia's leading financial voices, responsible for bringing financial insight to Australians through personal finance books, the Money TV show, and this publication, which he established in 1999. Paul is the chair of the Australian Government Financial Literacy Board and is chairman of InvestSMART Financial Services. He is the chair of Financial Literacy at Macquarie University where he is also a Professor with the School of Business and Economics. Click here to ask Paul your money question. Unfortunately Paul cannot respond to questions posted in the comments section. Please view our disclaimer here.
November 2, 2017 9.41am

You can afford an overseas trip but can't afford to pay your debts. How does that work ?

How about you "man up" first, work hard, pay back your creditors and take some responsibility, instead of taking the easy way out ? Plus, the feeling of personal pride and satisfaction you will get from travelling the hard road ? Priceless.