Wednesday, September 21, 2011

How am I supposed to adopt a rescue dog if rescue centers are so difficult to deal with?!?

I'm planning on getting a dog, and EVERYONE says ...'; adopt from a rescue, don't go to a breeder.'; and all the rescue sites say '; rescue a dog, and don't buy from a breeder.';

Well, I apply over and over and they say I'm not suitable!

Sure, I have a 2 story 1100 sq foot town home and I make enough to support a dog, and I don't have children but... becasue I'm under 25 and I rent- I'm a ';risk.';

okay okay, I GET that they want the dog to have a stable home. but If i havent moved in 4 years or changed jobs and I'm not planning on it- doesnt that show stability?

isnt it hhypocritical to tell people to adopt and not buy and then decline them?!

I've gone to shelters and they only have really large dogs.

I guess i'm just going have to buy a dog.How am I supposed to adopt a rescue dog if rescue centers are so difficult to deal with?!?
I know many of these California rescues and shelters don't have the requirements of owning a home..Perhaps you should put in your zip code, and then search a little larger area..I know I would drive several hours to find the perfect companion..Lindsay Kennel has Chihuahuas, and other small dogs, ( it is a high kill shelter, as is Visalia) Lemoore and Handford are desperate to place their dogs..

Just check out here, and put in your zip, but look a little further, to the crowded ones in Riverside area, or the central valley.%26gt;…

these little guys are only allowed to live 10 days%26gt;…

this is a high kill shelter with several wonderful dogs%26gt;…

Here is an organization to help you%26gt;…How am I supposed to adopt a rescue dog if rescue centers are so difficult to deal with?!?
I have the same kind of crap when I tried a cat rescue.

they were concerned that, as an indoor-outdoor cat, wolves would come around and eat the cat. But just MY cat!
thats crazy !
If you are in NYC I can recommend a shelter.

From where are you trying to adopt a dog? The ASPCA?
I do think a lot of rescues do go overboard sometimes with the qualifications. Usually animal shelters are not quite as fanatical about the requirements. Maybe you should try one of those. have to understand that we know what these poor babies have been through already and want SO badly for them to be in good homes. For me anyway if there were nearly ANYTHING I could do so that all these dogs could have good homes I would do it. If I could die so they all could live I would. So you have to understand where we are coming from. Being you have been there for 4 years I would consider you after a home visit if I felt your funding was OK and you could spend a decent amount of time with the dog each day. At any rate, look in your local paper for FREE TO GOOD HOME ads. These are the dogs that will end up in testing labs or as target practice for wretched kids. That way you are still rescuing a dog in a way.
Well, they want the dog to get daily exercise, not be couped up in the house all day. Not to mention, the dog would be unsupervised while you're at work for hours everyday. Would make for an unstable dog, and you'd come home to dog crap, urinated rugs, and a chewed-up couch or two. You have to be reasonable, and realistic.
Try this website, these people are very nice and understanding...
Most rescue centers are looking out for the pet. A lot of smaller breeds need a lot of attention. Would you have a dogie door so the pet could go outside whenever it needed to. If they had to be kept indoors all the time it could cause depression on the animal. A breeder would sell you a pet but only if they knew you could take care of it properly. If you don't have a dogie door would the pet be able to get out every 2 or 3 hrs. to pee. How would you feel if you had to wait until your owner came home to go....

Think about it...
Before you -purchase one, do some more research. Look in the classified in your local newspaper for postings from people looking to give their puppies or dog(s) to a new and good home. I got my dog from a friend who's boyfriend's dog had puppies! I've had her for two years and love her!! Also, check out your local shelter, the Animal Humane Association, etc. My mom adopted a ';rescue'; dog last December and its not a big dog. There are so many puppies, dogs, cats and kittens that need good homes that would otherwise be euthanized or dumped somewhere. If you need any help I would be glad to assist you. I don't believe that someone should have to ';purchase'; a dog rather than adopt for a small fee or better yet, for free!!
just try to find out what rules they require and if possible make a compromise with the shelter or if all else fails you could buy an animal at pet store or from and individual
I've gone through the same thing... I love pets and am responsible... And either my fiance or I are home nearly 100% of the time... He works days and I work nights. I'm ';at risk'; for the same reasons.

So we decided to find someone with puppies from the local paper. We tried to look for a family rather than a breeder and someone who wasn't registering their puppies- seems more likely they are just pet people, rather than breeders. Yet I still feel like a local breeder is better than the pet store...

My mom and I were talking about all this the other day. She said that when she got her dog from the shelter the paperwork was 10 pages long. 10 pages! I know they're just trying to place a dog in a loving home with people who will take care of it... But that much paperwork is enough to make people want to look somewhere else.
I totally agree with you--I know some measures were put in place to make sure the animal were being placed in good home--but give me a break--they refused me a dog-adult dog-because I had to go to work everyday--HELLO--was I supposed to quit my kob to be a dog owner?? Everyone I know that has a pet works.I suppose that poor ole dog was put down rather than given to someone who ?worked?

You would think they would be soooooo happy to have someone adopt these unwanted pets-give them love and shelter...I just bought a dog it was easier-but sad in a way dont you think?
I know you're pain. I live in Columbus, OH and I tried to get a dog from the Franklin County Dog Shelter and they gave me so much hell. I wanted this lab mix and they said I don't have any lab experience, so I wanted a jack russell terrier and I didn't have any Jack russell experience either, so then they said since I never ';owned'; a dog just grew up with one, even though I trained, fed, %26amp; bathe the dogs I don't have enought dog experience.

I found another shelter called Pets Without Parents and I love my Pitbull mix he is so funny and crafty. I would adopt every other dog I ever get from them if I had to get a dog. So, if you're in Ohio go to
If the laws punished the abusers of these animals as harshly as they should be, the rescue centers wouldn't exist at all.

If they are being this hard on you, it would seem to me that they are not placing these dogs in very many homes. I have adopted dogs and I will never do it again. I never realized how many problems these animals have. Physical problems as well as emotional problems. Most of them cost you a fortune in Vet bills.

It is sad that there are humans out there that can ruin animals and throw them away. Some of them can't be trusted not to attack people for no reason because of dog's abused background. It is not the poor animals fault, but you have to have the patience, time and money to help the dog.

I bought a purebred after much research on breeds and one that would fit into our homelife. I have never been sorry. When you purchase a purebred, you know the qualities you are going to get and the personality. You must be sure the breeder is excellent. You can tell when you go visit if it is a good breeder or not.

This could be a blessing in disguise for you. Match a breed to your personality and life. That is half the fun. I wouldn't trade my boy for anything. Actually I am going to buy another one from the same mother/father he had. That is how happy I am with him.....

One last thing. DO NOT buy a puppy from a pet store. You know nothing about where it came from and usually it is from a puppy mill. My boy came from small breeder that treated the parents and the pups like children. The disposition of the parents does come thru to the pups. So be real sure of the breeder.
I got mine from the humane society. I think all they did was call my landlord to make sure the dog was allowed. You seem way more quialified thna me to have one, and I think I'm doing fine. Go to the shelters over and over. Certain breeds are very common so when a different breed comes in they are adopted much faster. I was a volunteer dog walker at mine so I got to meet almost every dog that came in, which is when I fell in love with mine :)

(1) the size of your home

(2) how much you earn


One of the top 3 reasons for animals landing in shelters or rescues is because the owner rents their home and

(1) the landlord says the dog has to go (even if they had previously agreed)

(2) the person decides to move - maybe because of a job elsewhere, maybe the propeerty gets sold, maybe they have an argument with the landlord - but whatever the reason, they are moving and can't find somewhere to rent that will take their dog.

It could happen next year, it could happen 5 years from now but statistically you will be moving during that dog's lifetime and if isn't to a house you have purchased, you have to find a place that will take your dog. And these days, good luck!

The odds of needing to move and being able to afford a house to buy as the option, are, at your age, very slim with the over-inflated real estate market.


Also it has to do with your age. Again the statistics are against you.

(1) The age group most likely to get a dog and then later decide that they can't ';give it enough time'; or ';I'm gone too much'; or ';my situation won't let me be able to care for it'; are the group 18 - 25.

(2) At this time you aren't married. Another major reason for a dog losing its home is its owner meets someone, they get involved, the person moves in and they don't like the dog, they are allergic to the dog, the couple has to move to a bigger place and can't find somewhere to rent with the dog; the person has a kid or two and doesn't want the dog around them or the kid is allergic ......

4 years does not stability prove when you are looking at a commitment of 10-15 years and at a point in your life when things can change rapidly - move because of the sudden better job offer in another town; move because you want a nicer place; move because you meet a partner and want to live together and need to split the distance between your work; if you have been on your own for 4 years and are under 25, I'm guessing you didn't go to college so your employment,even though it has been the same for 4 years, is inherently more unstable at your age (I'm a micro-economist and that is true) so what you plan on doing and what happens might not be the same thing; you meet a partner who is allergic to your dog........shall I continue or do you get the idea??

You are in the age group whose whole life is in a state of change as to rent vs buy; where you live; where you work; who you live with......

And right now that makes you unsuitable. They aren't judging you personally (they don't even know you!) - they are judging the statistical odds of ';young unmarried renter.';

In 4 years probably, in 6 years or age 30, most likely. as you will be more settled and stable ....or buy a house as that is the BIG REASON right now (yeah, I know, California prices are NUTS!!!).


(1) Have you tried the specific rescues for a breed? Those are people who work with that breed, are volunteers and it is an effort organized by the National Breed Club.

Our club breed rescue quite happily places with people that work - for heavens sake nearly all of us WORK fulltime!! . I just placed an AKC Champion whose owner was killed in an accident in a home with kids and both parents work fulltime. (Actually we flew him from California to the east for this home.)

Check the National Breed Club Rescues:


(Formal shelters and gov't operations don't want to ever have to deal with the dog again. The breed club rescues are often more flexible because they know that if they have to they can rehome the dog in a foster placement with a volunteer.)


(a) Get a letter from your landlord that a dog is fine and what size is okay with him. Be nice if he could rave about what a great tenant and how reliable you are too! That would be most excellent.

(b) Get a letter from family who own their home - maybe your parents? - that if anything ever happened that you had to move, you and the dog or the dog is welcome to live with them.


(a) You mentioned you have had dogs. Contact the vet for your prior dogs and see if he will give you (or you through the dealings with your family) a positive reference.

(b) Go here and find an obedience trainer. When you apply, you can tell them that you have already arranged for you and the dog to work with a qualified obedience trainer.

Now you both need a GOOD obedience class - and that is NOT Petsmart or Petco. GO here to find contacts in you area that can help you locate and obedience trainer who works with all breeds and who does AKC obedience competitions competing at what they claim to teach – no proof of ability like winning:…… (set on all breeds)…

Even it they are an hour or more away, they will know other people all over the state.

(c) Get a letter from your employer/supervisor (stop laughing - tell them it is like adopting a child anymore) giving you a good reference for being responsible and reliable.

NOW DO NOT EVER BUY FROM A PET STORE. Those puppies came from puppy mills where the parents are locked in cages, bred until they literally die from it, never vaccinated, never wormed, fed just enough so they don't quite die of starvation, live in filth, never bathed or groomed or cared for, are typically of very poor genetic stock both physically and often mentally. The puppies are shoved off to pet stores with no vaccinations, no worming, no socialization or handling... You are buying nothing but heartbreak at a price higher than what a responsible breeder charged for a pet puppy.


If you do end buying a dog, here is how to find a healthy puppy or adult. (I jsut cut 'npasted this from something else iI had written so sorry if it is reptitive.)

First, start with the list of breeds on the AKC


You can search by Group, Breed name or all of them at once. Now, when you click on the picture of the dog and go to the page for that breed, on the left is a column. At the bottom of the column, is a link captioned ';National Breed Club';. Click on it - that takes you to the link to the National Club that is the only club about the breed that is recognized and accredited by the AKC and it sets the standards for the breed .

The Clubs' websites will give you an ENORMOUS amount of information about the breed - the good, the bad, and the why or why not to get that breed. The clubs websites also have:

(1) a breeders list - all of whom have agreed to abide by the breeders code of ethics (which you can read)

(2) a link to the breed rescue for their breed

Do give serious thought to adopting from an adult from a BREED CLUB RESCUE (see above for such rescue's websites). The clubs' breed rescues go to a great deal of trouble than a shelter or an organization with a building doing rescue to determine the dog's temperament, personality, likes and dislikes (particularly kids and cats and other dogs in the household), health, and level of training. They make a huge effort to match the right dog to the right home - and if they don't have one they think will be suitable for your home, they won't place it.

If you decide to get a puppy, please use one of the breeders who are members of the breed club. A well-bred pet puppy may not be a candidate for the show ring (that nose being 1/8th of an inch to long or something else very picky) but they will be very healthy, the parents carefully screened for hereditary health problems ( and that involves a LOT more than a checkup at the vet - massive vet bills for hereditary health problems are not good) , and from a breeder who has devoted a great deal of time to understanding the breed and bloodlines. A responsible breeder will have a written contract with a health guarantee for hereditary problems; require that if for any reason you ever have to give up the dog that it comes back to them; and always be available for help, assistance and advice about your dog. Such a breeder will tell you if they don't think their breed is right for you based upon your needs. They want a perfect forever home for the puppies - not the money. (In 43 years in the dog show world, I have never known a breeder of that caliber who has made a profit on their dogs - it is labor of love.)

Now from your viewpoint the contract requirement that ';require that if for any reason you ever have to give up the dog that it comes back to them'; is in your favor. That breeder stands ready and willing to take charge of the dog if you ever have to move and can't find a place that will take the dog or if something else happens. In addition, if there was a situation to come up where you would be temporarily unable to have the dog with you (moving and new place is great but there is a gap and you have to stay with friends), the breeder is the saftey net for the dog and you. If the breeder is comfortable that you will stay in contact with them about how the dog is doing and where you two are, then that will work.

A puppy from such a breeder costs no more - and often less as poorly bred dogs tend to have very high vet bills over the years - than from a backyard breeder who doesn't do the health checks, knows nothing about the breed or bloodlines, doesn't give a guarantee, never wants to hear about the puppy again and has breed from mediocre or poor quality dogs.

You may find the breeder who has the type of dog you want but no litter on the ground at the moment. Most good breeders have waiting lists -get on it. You may find the breeder and puppy you want but at a distance. Among the really responsible breeders(members of the club) shipping a puppy is quite normal -they want the best possible home for the dog and the written contract is very extensive wiiht lots of documentation about health esting from the OFA, CERF, Univ of Michigan and other facilites; and certificates from the AKC about their dogs' achievements. (And be prepared to get co-opted into joining the breed club and getting involved!)

Do ask the breeders on the club list if they have any dogs they bred that they need to rehome - good breeders all require if the owner can't keep one, it comes back to them. It may be a dog they placed and it came back because the owner didn't have time, didn't realize how big it would get, got divorced.... It may be a dog who was a show prospect but as they grew didn't meet their early promise. It may be an AKC Champion they decided not to use in their breeding program because while it did get the Championship, they don't need more bloodstock or find a tiny conformation flaw they don't want to reproduce.
Yeah...I hear you! A *LOT* of shelter/rescue people a TOTALLY *NUTZ*!!!!

They'd rather a dog a sat inna pen w/THEM until it DIED of old age than place it inna ';less than optimum'; home!

Would rather KILL a hound than let it go to a HUNTING


Would keep a dog cooped-up for LIFE than let it go to a home where the person worked PART-TIME!!! DUH???HOW the BLANK do they think the FEED gets paid for???

See,those sort of folks tend toward being AR/humaniac/peta-NUTZ to begin with %26amp; working w/so many animals that are DUMPED by their IDIOT ';first'; owners,they get even WORSE!!

You ever see stories about the ';collector'; types? Who end up w/200 cats??? Same wackos,just different degree.

*IF* you just want a MUTT/MONGREL w/ NO background info,try the GOV'T.POUNDS!!! *NOT* the ';humane society'; types.

Yep,ALL the pounds,etc. are FULL of BIG HAIRY BLACK dogs...cuz NOBODY WANTS EM!!
Rescues are very cautious because it is there goal to place dogs in a permanent home, not one where the risk of them getting dumped is high.

They look for:

Most rescues don't adopt to families with young children, so with you not having kids that should be a plus for your application.

Are you working? If not, that could be why. They may be concerned about vet care funding.

As far as renting...did you get permission from the landlord or apartment manager to get a dog? If so, get it in writing and fax it, take it, or mail it to the rescue shelter. They may be concerned the dog is not allowed in the rental unit.

Go to and do a search for your zip code. I'm sure you will find a medium or small dog to suit you there.

Don't give up. Maybe you applications have been turned down because the dog isn't right for you. The perfect dog may still be waiting for you to find him or her!
Oh my gosh...your story could be mine!

It got so bad that I ended up spending the money to get my dog from a reputable breeder. The breeders put me through a similarly grueling application process, but actually took the time to get to know me, rather than outright deny me because of where I fell ';statistically.';

ETA: Buying my dachshund was the best thing I've ever done. He's been the best dog EVER and I've been nothing but thrilled with him. He's three years old and the apple of my eye :).

Plus I got a show-quality (but bought him with pet papers), amazingly wonderful puppy for just a little bit more than the ridiculously expensive adoption fees. I was looking for a dachshund, and the average going rate of a rescue agency dachshund puppy was....$300. Crazy. Going through the pound, if you can find a small dog there, is definitely a better option. Around here you can actually get put onto waiting lists for small breeds and they'll call you when one comes in. Then you can have first dibs to meet-n-greet :).

I agree with you...a lot of these so-called ';rescues'; end up either hoarding or charging outrageous prices for their pups. There was a rescue on petfinder that was actually auctioning off a little dapple dachshund because so many people were interested (!). Horrifying...

Supposedly there are good ones out there if you keep looking. Good luck!
I wish you lived in the Tampa Fla. area...I have a friend that runs an all breed rescue there that would love to adopt a dog to someone like sound stable,intellegent and able to give a great forever home to a needy dog....check and see what would be involved with shipping one to you,then go to look up tampa rescues....hers is called R.U.F.F. good luck!!!!! I know at one time we saved a dog from a kill shelter in Cal. and it cost the lady that saved it 300.00 to ship it to me in Fla......we just picked it up at the airport...
Sounds like you haven't found the right rescue group yet. Don't give up and keep looking. There are a lot of rescue groups out there and not all of them are Butt#$%*@
I have been with boston terrier rescue for about 10 years and have never turned an applicant down because they rent, we just require a notarized letter from the landlord. Age also has never been a factor. I'd love to help you but we only work in the NJ area. Keep trying - please - and don't buy a dog!!!

I changed jobs and I am experiencing anxiety. How do I cope with ';what if'; anxiety?

I have recently changed jobs and I am experiencing significant anxiety.

I left my old job for a new one that offered more experience and better pay. While I still liked my old job, I was getting really stressed our because many of my co-workers and bosses, who I got along with and were my support structure, had left and were replaced by bosses who heavily criticized me and my work; however, they still worked me like a dog and took credit for my results.

More money, more pay, better environment...I SHOULD BE HAPPY!!

So why am I not? I worry that I won't be able to do my job well. I, for some reason miss my old job - maybe because I was good at it and was the ';go to guy'; for everything. Now I feel like a small fish in a big pond. I fear that I won't be successful and will eventually get fired. I also reflect on the criticism I received from my bosses at the old job.

I can't stop thinking/ worrying about this and it is destroying my personal life. I need help. Does anyone have any ideas or tips? What do I do? I changed jobs and I am experiencing anxiety. How do I cope with ';what if'; anxiety?
Number one,you would not have got the job if new employer did not think you could handle the work,

Number two ,obviously you demonstrated in your interview your abilities and areas of strengths.

Number three,key word RECENT,give yourself a chance to settle in,transitional anxiety is normal.

Number four,don't reflect on the past,and the critics,put them out of your mind,you are not in that situation physically anymore,why go there mentally.Look ahead.

Try and make friends with new collegues,sit and have coffee break/lunch with them.Try to talk about non work stuff when on breaks.Ask new boss for some feedback on how you are going and if there is anything else you should be doing and arenot.Always ask if unsure rather than fudging your way through and possibly stuffing up.Asking questions demonstrates keeness to learn and improve and that impresses the boss.I changed jobs and I am experiencing anxiety. How do I cope with ';what if'; anxiety?
Wow Worrier,

This sounds just like a situation I was in a few years ago. I was working as a graphic artist for a major metropolitan news paper in their advertising department. And I to was the go to man, the fire extinguisher, the problem solver, in short I did it all. The deadline stress was incredible. The people I worked with JERKS, support from my supervisor(s) non-existant, salery mediocre, atta boys nada. In the end I suffered a heart attack from all that stress. So stop the worrying in the end it's just not worth it.

How can i find out if my sons dad is in the credit bureau for child support arrearages??

He has changed jobs and he has not paid child support as court ordered and child support expects me to know where he is at when we live in different states. I need to know how to find out where he is working at and I don't know if IRS will provide this info to me since they would have access to his new employment due to filling out tax deduction forms for a job.How can i find out if my sons dad is in the credit bureau for child support arrearages??
Every employer in the United States is required to report any new or rehired employees. This data is entered and maintained through the state's New Hire Directory. This information is also passed on to and shared with state and federal child support enforcement agencies.

If your ex has not been paying his court ordered child support, it's only a matter of time before he's caught. Child support enforcement can file for a tax offset to capture any refunds for arrears. But if he doesn't get a refund there's nothing to offset. They can also put liens on assets or get his driver's license suspended.

They should know how to use the system to locate a deadbeat parent and take steps necessary to get him to pay up. If you can, try someone in their upper chain of command.

You could also file a grievance with the court for contempt and threaten him with some jail time.

When your ex fills out his W-4 form, it doesn't go to the IRS. It's just used by the employer's payroll to determine his withholding amount and is kept with his files.

Although, the W-4 doesn't get sent to the IRS, a copy of the form or an equivalent alternative is sent to the state's New Hire Directory.How can i find out if my sons dad is in the credit bureau for child support arrearages??
I do not know what state you live in but here in Ohio

The child support section of the goverment in Warren county has a department that is inter linked with the IRS system that ONLY lets them know if someone is found working

It is then the departments job to let the courts via court orders

to take over obtaining the address of the ';employer'; Their local legal system is notified and then the rest is history

When we have the man power yours will be next to be taken care of they only have so many persons and a LOT of dead beat dads in this country
IRS won't know where he is working until W-2 information gets forwarded to it next summer. It will not tell you anything. In my state, California, employers have to inform the Employment Development Department (among other things, it handles state employment taxes) about new hires within less than a month of being hired. Your local District Attorney, family support division or its counterpart in other states, will be the one to access this type of information to enforce child support orders.

How Much tax will i pay?

I am Currently looking to change jobs but will take a pay cut, How much tax will i pay on 拢11,000, Will my tax code change and how much can i be expecting to clear each month?

Please help??How Much tax will i pay?
Your tax code remains the same. (most people's is about 600; ie the first 拢6000 you earn is untaxed.)

So, on 拢11,000 you'll pay about 21% of 拢5,000 in tax.

You'll also have to pay NI on top, of course.

Take a look at tax-credits though. I had a job last year where I was earning just 拢6.20 an hour, but the Tax Office paid an extra 拢50 a week into my bank account in working tax credits. It was great.

(search the HMRC web-site.)How Much tax will i pay?
Bit unusual to take a pay cut,but, your tax code will not change and as a general rule of thumb - give or take a few quid you lose about 26% for tax and National Insurance. (why they don't just lump it together and call it tax I don't know)

So on 11k you should finish up with about 拢190 a week.
Won't be quite as bad as you may think. Your tax allowance will increase to 拢6475 on 6th April for the year 2009/10. Play around with .
Tax code won't change. You can earn the same amount before tax as you can now. Roughly a third of your wages are tax.
Around 10,000

How can I erase the data on my laptop fully and completely?

I am changing jobs and I have some personal files such as bank details on my office laptop which I need to return.How can I erase the data on my laptop fully and completely?
Head over to and download this open source (Free !) program to select all the files you want and delete them with confidence.

Don't know which files to search where ? Is deleting your whole drive a possibility ? If so, just download a free linux distro, boot it up, and in a terminal windows use the command:

sudo badblocks /dev/sda -w -s -p 5 (needs some editing depending on your linux distro and laptop config).
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  • When delinquent, how much worse is it to settle than to pay off a debt in full?

    I have many debts from CCs to a car to personal loans. On 2 CCs, I just lost track after having moved, changed jobs, etc. They went to collections just as I was going to try to make arrangements. I understand that settling shows up on the credit report as settled, but it's tempting to do when it can save me so much, and I can start to get the debt in the past. How much worse would it make things for me in the long run if I settle vs. knock the interest down and pay off the amount in full? Will it significantly affect my ability to buy a car, rent an apt, buy a house, get a CC, etc, any more than if I paid in full? The collectors are calling. What's the best answer? I want to be on top of my finances again. I'm not used to having a delinquency problem. It's not me. I want out of debt and to build my retirement, especially when I'm already 34 and have all debt and no real assets or equity after being married to someone who sucks me dry financially.When delinquent, how much worse is it to settle than to pay off a debt in full?
    I am really surprised at the wrong information that was given to you here. It is not true that paying off the account will allow it to be removed from the credit report any faster than if it is settled. The opposite is actually true in many cases. Negative information is kept on the credit report for seven years from the start of the last delinquency. If you catch up at one point and then get behind again, this will start the clock over. If you settle the debt, then there is no restarting of the clock.

    It is also not true that a settlement will necessarily keep you from getting credit for years. Most loans are based strictly on your credit score. There is no appreciable difference in the credit score of someone who paid off a debt in full and someone who settles the debt as long as they happen at the same time. Much more important is how long ago the delinquency was. If you have to wait to pay it off, it will have far more impact on your credit score.

    The money that you save by settling the account can be used to help you financially now and to help you rebuild your credit. Further, you can negotiate how the company reports the debt to the credit bureau in your settlement offer. You can have them just report a zero balance and not report that it was even settled. I have done this for many clients.When delinquent, how much worse is it to settle than to pay off a debt in full?
    It would probably be better to consolidate and pay off the debt rather than settle. The settlement can stay on your record for 7 to 10 years, but once you pay the amount in full, the debt can be removed from your record in 6 months or less.
    You shouldn't settle unless you have no other choice.
    The delinquencies will remain on your credit report regardless of whether you pay in full now or settle now; you're already in delinquent status and no matter what you do now, that's going to take a while to repair. But settling will do a LOT more damage to your credit at this point than paying it off, even if it takes you a lot longer to do. The money you save now by settling will be taken away by many years of higher interest rates and with a settlement on your credit report, you will have a hard time getting a car note, mortgage, etc in the next 5-10 years.
    I suggest you to pay off all debts in full.

    How can I find out for sure if I have a traffic warrant?

    The ticket happened 2-3 years ago. I was in the middle of changing jobs and moving across the country and simply forgot about it.

    I've already called the court. They say they have no record of it. I suppose I ought to be content with their incompetence, but I'm going to be traveling out of the country and don't want to be detained on my return. Is there any kind of database (even a pay one) I can check to be sure?How can I find out for sure if I have a traffic warrant?
    If the court has no record of it then they've either lost it (and may find it later) or it doesn't exist. Rather then calling them, write them a letter asking the same question so you have a written record of their response.How can I find out for sure if I have a traffic warrant?
    Call the cop shop where the ticket was issued %26amp; ask them if there's a warrant out for you.
    Contact the District Attorney's Office that had jurisdiction on your old case and see if they have anything. If the court and the DA's office both have no record, then you should be all set.

    But as another poster suggested, get it in writing, make copies, keep one copy locked up back home and another copy with you when traveling out of the country.