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Letter From A Gambler Helped

Client letter to A1 Debt Assistance

A gambling addict that had to go bankrupt to save her life

(this letter was not edited by us and is printed as it was written)

February 2012

I literally owe my life to my family and Troy from A1 Debt Assistance.

For many years I have been guilty of living beyond my means and spending way above my budget – which was funded by many credit cards (in some cases two cards with the same Financial Institution).

Unfortunately some years ago I was diagnosed with a serious illness, which left me unable to work for several months. During the period of not working I joined the local RSL Club and began playing poker machines. What started out as a fairly inexpensive, social outing ballooned over the next ten years into a serious gambling addiction.

I maxed out all my credit cards and then turned to Pay Day Loans in order to fund my addiction – always believing I could meet the repayments. I had loans with each and every Pay Day Institution and was borrowing from one to pay the other. It got to the stage where I was refinancing existing Pay Day Loans – on one occasion paying a brokerage fee of $1,100 for an $800 refinancing. This of course did not include the interest payable.

Even ‘though you have to produce Bank Statements each and every time you apply for a Pay Day Loan, they turn a blind eye to the numerous withdrawals from gaming institutions and the list of payments to Banks and Pay Day Lenders. I blame only myself for my weakness – however feel lenders should perhaps be more vigilant in the lending criteria to deter people like me getting into such dreadful debt. One Institution (a Bank – not a Pay Day Loan Lender) was contacting me every single day at work demanding I pay the $100 I was over the limit. Up until that point I had never missed a payment to this creditor so could not understand their harassment. They are absolutely relentless.

I worked in a very stressful job where I was extremely unhappy and working extraordinarily long hours. Due to my total depression I was unable to seek alternative employment. I dreaded losing my job and felt unable to move to a less onerous job with shorter hours as this would of course mean less money – which I could ill afford.

I was suffering severe depression – I couldn’t sleep, was taking medication to help me sleep, medication to keep me awake, medication to alleviate my depression etc. etc. My GP and the Psychologist I was referred to were unable to help me.

I was petrified to answer my mobile (knowing it would be a debt collector) and each and every night came home to a pile of window faced envelopes.

Ultimately I hit a brick road in that I could not obtain finance anywhere as I had refinanced every loan I had – and was therefore unable to meet my many bills. My situation was so dire I decided the only way out was suicide. However, as a last resort I decided to ring Troy, A1 Debt Assistance. I had contacted Troy in 2009 when I was experiencing financial difficulty. At that time I opted for trying to solve the situation myself – which was a huge mistake as I just got in deeper debt and ended up suicidal.

The phone call to Troy was the turning point in my life. After listening to my story, Troy assessed my situation and advised that my only option was bankruptcy.

Troy was totally supportive – he handled everything for me and talked me through every step of the way. He was available to speak with me in the evenings and always responded to my emails the same day. He prepared and lodged my Application with the information I supplied and allowed me to advise all my creditors (who telephoned and sent letters with a vengeance) to contact him, who was authorised to speak on my behalf. This removed a HUGE burden from me in that not only are collection agents aggressive it is detrimental to your employment to try and field such calls at work, where most people do not have the luxury of any privacy.

I have been very fortunuate in that my family has always been very supportive of me, even if disappointed in me – as I certainly was of myself. I was also fortunuate in that not only did Troy support me through my bankruptcy he also took an interest in me overcoming my problems and turning my life around (as did my family). Troy and my family encouraged me to take up hobbies that cost little or nothing – and to change jobs.

I am now in a much better place and feel I have been given a second chance in life.

My advice to anybody who is in even a similar situation is to take the plunge. If I had taken this step 3 years ago I would not have got to the stage of wanting to end it all.

Troy is professional and caring – he can give you your life back. I suggest you make the call sooner rather than later.

Perhaps if you read this letter, you now may have a better understanding of what problems gambling can cause.

If you know of someone or are concerened about your own gambling, please feel free to call us for a free chat and let’s see if we can’t make things simpler for you. Don’t try and win back money – there has to be a realisation that gambling is controlling you.