Family Matters
Dear Community,

Our tech team has launched updates to The Nest today. As a result of these updates, members of the Nest Community will need to change their password in order to continue participating in the community. In addition, The Nest community member's avatars will be replaced with generic default avatars. If you wish to revert to your original avatar, you will need to re-upload it via The Nest.

If you have questions about this, please email [email protected]

Thank you.

Note: This only affects The Nest's community members and will not affect members on The Bump or The Knot.

MIL and money problems - LONG

I've had many problems with my MIL, but now that things have become financial, it's getting worse. 

About 6 months ago, we get a call from a collection agency saying that they have been trying to get a hold of DH for 4 years about 2 medical bills that were never paid. The bills were for DH when he was a freshman in college, 18, and living at home on his mother's insurance. The collection company had been sending bills and notices to the IL's house and calling there and getting no response.

We find out that MIL said she thought she had paid them, but apparently not. She never mentioned this to us in 4 years or ever gave us the bills that were coming to her house. It was only $150 for both bills and could have been taken care of every easily if we would have known. The bills were paid for finally and it took almost a month to get MIL to try and hunt up the bills so we could see what the payments were for.  All along she had every bill she had received at her house and had just ignored the fact that there was an overdue amount on them and never paid them or told us about them so we could pay them.  (The reason I say pay them herself is because at the time of the medical bills, DH was just starting college, just out of high school and living at home (we had not met yet).  His parents always paid for his medical expenses, car insurance, ect.) 

Now DH has a mark on his credit from these that won't go away for like a year or so, since they were sent to a collection agency.  I was furious when I found out and told DH that technically his mother should pay for the bills since at the time of them it had been her responsibility.  I might have been way off base here, but at the time I was upset and all I could think is "Why would a mother do this to her son?" 

In the end, MIL went to her mother and asked her to pay for the overdue bills.  Even though ILs both have jobs and should be pretty financially dependent, they are not and MIL relies on her parents to pay all of their bills and expenses, including school things for the two younger SILs. 

I realize that might have been the reason these bills were never paid because they never got shown to the GMIL, but if MIL would have came to me and DH at the time the first bill showed up, then I might have been more apt to paying the bills.  Once it had been 4 years and things had just been ignored, I felt that we were just showing her that she can always do what she wants.

Now the fact is, DH just bought a new truck and is wanting to sell his old car.  His sister just turned 16 and we thought his grandparents might want to buy it from us for her, so we told them we had it for sale and how much we were asking (lower than what we would ask a stranger, since they are family).  MIL said that we should give SIL the car and that she wasn't paying us for a vehicle.  She thinks that since it's family, we shouldn't ask them to buy it.  I refuse and told DH that that would not happen.  Not only is that not fair to ask of us, but the money from the car will help with payments on the new truck.  I just don't trust them with money issues after everything that's happened.  

I guess more or less, I just want to get other opinions.  I know I probably acted wrong on insisting MIL pay the late bills, but at the time, I felt it was the only way not to let her run all over us.  Any advice?

Re: MIL and money problems - LONG

  • First, I think you need to let go of the past due bills. They're paid. It's done. Do I think you should have paid them? Yes. It's $150 and you know MIL relies on GMIL. You knew how this was going to play out when you insisted that MIL pay them. Your H benefitted from the medical treatment and regardless of the circumstances at the time - for $150, it was worth it to pay it just to put the thing behind you and call it done - keep the peace - and NOT take any more $ out of GMIL's pocket. Move on. What's done is done.

    As for the car, tell MIL that gifting SIL the car isn't an option. End of story. You are not required to explain why. I also have to wonder WHY you thought that, if MIL was relying on GMIL to pay a $150 bill, MIL would pony up to buy a car for SIL. Not good thinking there. If anything, it's more likely that GMIL will pony it up so SIL can have the car. Take the topic off the table completely and sell the truck to someone else. Or tell SIL to get a Summer job to buy it herself if she wants it. 16 is old enough for a Summer job and to learn the value of owning something through hard work rather than being given it.

  • imoanimoan member
    10000 Comments Eighth Anniversary
    image notapetrock:

    First, I think you need to let go of the past due bills. They're paid. It's done. Do I think you should have paid them? Yes. It's $150 and you know MIL relies on GMIL. You knew how this was going to play out when you insisted that MIL pay them. Your H benefitted from the medical treatment and regardless of the circumstances at the time - for $150, it was worth it to pay it just to put the thing behind you and call it done - keep the peace - and NOT take any more $ out of GMIL's pocket. Move on. What's done is done.

    As for the car, tell MIL that gifting SIL the car isn't an option. End of story. You are not required to explain why. I also have to wonder WHY you thought that, if MIL was relying on GMIL to pay a $150 bill, MIL would pony up to buy a car for SIL. Not good thinking there. If anything, it's more likely that GMIL will pony it up so SIL can have the car. Take the topic off the table completely and sell the truck to someone else. Or tell SIL to get a Summer job to buy it herself if she wants it. 16 is old enough for a Summer job and to learn the value of owning something through hard work rather than being given it.

    Ditto this entire thing
    image
    Currently Reading: Don Quixote by Miguel De Cervantes
  • I agree with notapetrock.

    I also don't think that you showed her she can't walk all over you just be refusing to pay your H's medical bills, whether or not they were past due.

  • Let the medical bills go.  It was $150, and if your dh was 18, the bills were legally his responsibility.  I would stay out of deciding what bills of your dh your MIL should pay.  Since the bills were incurred before your marriage, it's really none of your business.  And you don't get to TELL the ILS how they spend their $.  Your logic about why the ILS should pay is skewed.  They have jobs, so they should pay.  Presumably, if you and DH have enough $ to buy a new truck, you have enough $ to pay as well.

    As for SILs car, your ILs don't have to give you any money.  And they don't have to get a car for SIL, either.

    I think a lot of this is a power struggle between you and the ILS.  I would advise you to decide on a plan with DH (ie: SIL should pay for a car or not), then YOU stay out of it.  As long as DH sticks to your plan (ie he doesn't cave and GIVE sil his car), let him handle his family. 

  • They're financially independent and now it's up to the IL's parents to pay? SOmething's way wrong with this picture.

    I wouldn't be surprised if there are a great many more money problems than meets the eye. IF they hit you up for money, don't give them a cent. 

  • Re: the car: You didn't have to offer to sell the car to a family member at a lesser rate because they're family- it was nice of you to see if they were interested in it and offer them a reduced rate before putting it up for sale to the public. ?On the flip side, they also don't have to buy your car because you offered it. ?You need to sell the car- since the first buyer you asked wasn't interested, put it up for sale for other buyers. ?Whether or not your MIL thinks you should just give them the car is immaterial- you've already decided you need to sell the car, so sell it. ?

    Re: the bills- it's water under the bridge at this point. ?Nothing productive will come of stewing about what MIL did or didn't do, nor will studying MIL and FIL's financial life and thinking about what they should have saved or should pay for themselves. ?The best thing you can do is to think ahead for future situations and come up with a game plan with DH: if GMIL is no longer able to pay their bills and ILs come to you and DH for help, what will you do? ?If other bills show up re: DH's healthcare that have lapsed, what will you do? ?etc. ??

  • Give SIL or MIL a deadline and firm price regarding the car, i.e. you have two weeks to buy this car or we are going to run an ad in the newspaper, the price is $$$ take it or leave it.  If you discuss your reasons for selling or whatever they will think you are open to negotiation and the arguments will begin.

    Personally, I would not sell this car to family.  You have already been burned with money in the past, why give them an opening to burn you again.  This arrangement has no positive outcome.

  • image angels_walk:

    Personally, I would not sell this car to family.  You have already been burned with money in the past, why give them an opening to burn you again.  This arrangement has no positive outcome.

    Ditto this. If SIL ends up with this vehicle, I foresee many uncomfortable conversations about who should pay for any repairs on it in your future.
  • Your DH should check his credit report.  These medical bills should have been outstanding on his report during the last 4 yrs, and if there are any other things floating around like this, they should be on there too. 

    Also, you can put in another address change card with the post office.  These can be spotty sometimes, but they should sort out and forward the mail with his name on it that goes to your MIL address to your current address.

  • image notapetrock:
    image angels_walk:

    Personally, I would not sell this car to family.  You have already been burned with money in the past, why give them an opening to burn you again.  This arrangement has no positive outcome.

    Ditto this. If SIL ends up with this vehicle, I foresee many uncomfortable conversations about who should pay for any repairs on it in your future.

    DItto.

    You know, it's pretty easy to say to your ILs: we need to sell the car in order to pay for the new truck.  Sorry.

    The rest of it you have to let go.  Forever.

    promised myself I'd retire when I turned gold, and yet here I am
  • image klscott22:

     ...but if MIL would have came to me and DH at the time the first bill showed up, then I might have been more apt to paying the bills.  Once it had been 4 years and things had just been ignored, I felt that we were just showing her that she can always do what she wants.

    Oh, and this is very petty.  This says as much about you as it does about your MIL.

    promised myself I'd retire when I turned gold, and yet here I am
  • As the others said, let go of the old medical bills.  They are paid and it is over and done with.  It is also none of your business how they decided to pay them (either on their own or having the grandparents pay).  This isn't any of your business and I fail to see how sticking your nose in it made the situation any better.

    I also think you seriously overracted about the whole situation.  You have no idea what occurred that led the bills to not be paid.  Assuming she was being vicious and controlling by not paying them was a quick assumption on your part that may or may not be true.

    As for the car, unless they are willing to pay for it then sell it on your own to an outside party.  Your MIL does not have a right to tell you that you shouldn't charge family. 

    image
  • You better make darn sure that you get cash for this car if you sell it to yur MIL.. she seems like the type to give you a bad check or keep saying oh we will get you the money. Cash money before you do any legal paper transferring stuff!!
  • First, let the $150 go.  Your husband is the one who should have been responsible for these bills and ignorance will only get you so far.  It is no secret that he has this little thing they call a credit report, and because of massive advertising efforts it is no secret that you can go to freecreditreport.com and get it.  He is an adult, and he needs to handle his finances (including his credit scores).  Did his mother act in the best manner, no.  But they are not her bills, and they never were. 

    Second, you know how they are about money.  It would be incredibly stupid for you to go into a business transaction with these people.  You gave them the option to buy the car at a reduced rate, they declined to purchase the car.  Put an add in the paper and sell the car.

     

  • Ok--I agree that the OP and her DH should have just paid the $150 and they need to let it go now as a lesson learned.

    However, when I was 18, in college, and on my Mom's insurance, those bills would have gone to her house and I very much would have expected her to pay them.  At the VERY least, I would have expected my Mom to have handed me the bills and told me that they needed to be paid, and to not sit on them for 4 yrs.

    These bills wouldn't have made it onto his credit report until they went to collections, so it would already have been too late for them.  They do need to pay more attention to his credit report now knowing that they can't trust his mother on this stuff.

    Edit:  And come to think of it, usually the person who holds the insurance is responsible for any bills that aren't covered by the insurance, so I'm really surprised that her DH's name was on any of this.

  • As far as the bills go if you had pulled your DH's credit report they would have shown up with the Collection Agency's name and potentially the number.  DH had something similar while he was in college and MIL was taking care of medical bills.  We only found out because we pulled our credit reports.

    We ended up paying the money and not saying because in the end it was DH's responsibility since he was 18.  I would recommend pulling your credit reports to make sure there isn't anything else outstanding since your ILs aren't very good with money.

  • image Hoodlum90:

    However, when I was 18, in college, and on my Mom's insurance, those bills would have gone to her house and I very much would have expected her to pay them.  At the VERY least, I would have expected my Mom to have handed me the bills and told me that they needed to be paid, and to not sit on them for 4 yrs.

    I agree with this.  Now, since it is done and taken care of -- you do need to drop it.  Use this experience as knowledge for the future.  You know that finacially there are issues there.  So do NOT sell your vehicle to that household.  There will be issues that arise later.

  • image FutureMrs.Murra:

    As far as the bills go if you had pulled your DH's credit report they would have shown up with the Collection Agency's name and potentially the number.  DH had something similar while he was in college and MIL was taking care of medical bills.  We only found out because we pulled our credit reports.

    We ended up paying the money and not saying because in the end it was DH's responsibility since he was 18.  I would recommend pulling your credit reports to make sure there isn't anything else outstanding since your ILs aren't very good with money.

    After the incident we did pull his report and that's actually how we found out about the second one.  Thanks for the advice though.

Sign In or Register to comment.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards