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Halloween and Zombie Debts

October 28, 2013

By Margaret H. Johnson

It’s Halloween and it’s time to get scared again. But I have something much more frightening than ghouls, Frankenstein or vampires. Yes, indeed. Zombie debts can fly out of the darkest caves and scare you into an appointment with a lawyer. Can anything beat that?

 A zombie debt is a debt that has died but keeps coming back to life. There are all kinds of them. It could be a forgotten dental bill or an old Visa balance.

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Debt Burden Ensnares Older Canadians

October 11, 2013

By Margaret H. Johnson

A recent article in the Vancouver Sun about older Canadians slipping deeper into debt should not come as a surprise. As a retired colleague of mine, the former Director of Debtor Assistance in British Columbia, Douglas Welbanks, said, “The baby boomers invented debt.”

He quickly admitted this was not exactly true, “It was the baby boomer era in which consumer credit took off – beginning with finance companies and the poor in the 1960s, evolving to retail merchant and bank credit cards in the 1970s. By 1990 the middle class was pretty much drifting into trouble with over $100 billion in consumer debt with more or less universal bank credit cards like Visa and Mastercard.”

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