Recently divorced, with a five-year-old and two ailing parents to care for, Suzie* was struggling to make ends meet. Throughout her short-lived marriage, Suzie opted to be a homemaker, sacrificing her career to tend to her family. She never once thought that Alex, her husband of 6 years, would change from the caring man he once was to a man who would risk everything for his gambling habit.
Gambling is a bad enough habit, but gambling with money that you do not have is even worse. When Alex could no longer afford to pay his swelling gambling debts, he turned to a loan shark for help. Consequently, he almost always defaulted on the scheduled payments. As a result of his careless actions, the family was intimidated and continuously received unwanted violent visits from the loan shark. Divorce was the last thing Suzie wanted; however, when threats from the loan shark escalated, it seemed to be the only solution to guarantee the safety of her only child and her ageing parents.
Suzie always knew that walking away from the marriage would never be easy. What she did not foresee was how tough it would be being the sole breadwinner of the family. She always thought Alex would chip in even after the divorce. To her surprise, Alex washed his hands of all the responsibilities and did not seem to care about their daughter. Getting a decent job was not easy as she barely graduated from high school. Suzie had to work numerous dead end jobs before she finally found employment as a secretary at a local government agency. Fortunately, her salary of RM2,000 was more than enough to pay the bills.
Just as things began to settle down, Suzie received a bankruptcy notice. Her ex-husband took a loan under her name for a car purchase when they got married and defaulted on the payments a couple of years back. The initial loan amount of RM50,000 ballooned to almost RM250,000 in those short years. To make matters worse, Suzie realised that the said car was in the possession of a loan shark as part of the payment for her husband’s debt. This further made the car untraceable and repossession by the bank almost impossible. Distraught, Suzie took advice from her close friends and phoned AKPK for help.
After meeting Suzie and understanding her predicament, AKPK issued a proposal to the bank concerned to accept a full and final settlement amount of RM50,000 to be paid at 0% interest via monthly instalments of RM500. The bank immediately replied to the proposal, fully agreeing with the settlement plan. The acceptance from the bank which came two weeks just before Suzie’s court date provided much needed relief! She was glad that the agency was able to act swiftly and save her from bankruptcy. Though she will have to keep up with her payments from here on, Suzie felt that with seeking AKPK’s assistance, she was one step closer to complete financial freedom. She now looks forward to better days with her family.
*The names specified in these stories have been changed to protect the identities of the individuals involved. These success stories are meant to merely provide information on AKPK’s services and lessons on money management.AKPK Ipoh Branch Unit B-2-1 Greentown Square Jalan Dato’ Seri Ahmad Said 30450 Ipoh. Tel: 605 242 8319 Fax: 605 242 8452 Website: www.akpk.org.my