Bankruptcy Viewpoint Seems To Miss An Important Point

Register now

I just finished reading Jim Blaine's article in Feb. 24 issue of The Credit Union Journal, and even though I am somewhat uncomfortable being aligned with some of our "allies" in the push for reform, I find one sentence in the article to indicate that Mr. Blaine is missing the point.

Mr Blaine writes "...if credit unions want 'to overcome bankruptcy abuse' all they need to do is raise loan rates by one to three hundredths of 1%." If I understand this correctly, Mr. Blaine suggests the option of increasing the borrowing costs of members who will pay to offset the losses caused by abusers who don't pay rather than reform the system to hold the abusers personally responsible. While the amount may be miniscule, the principle isn't. And, apparently unlike Mr. (Ralph) Nader, I don't believe requiring the repayment of a debt by someone with the means is "anti-consumer" any more than I believe prosecuting shoplifters to be "anti-consumer." In my opinion, abusive bankruptcy filers are "financial shoplifters" and it seems to me that we have an obligation to our responsible members to hold the abusive filers accountable. At any point, these "victims of easy credit offers" could have declined. The proposed legislation is not about logic, it's about fairness and personal responsibility.

Eric Clark

Champion Credit Union

Canton, N.C.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.
MORE FROM AMERICAN BANKER