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Obligations to support in laws financially - please offer opionions


Ben72

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Hi

 

I really need some objective opinions as I'm having a very hard time trying to work out what to do regarding my wife's in-laws.

 

My parents in-law gave their business to my sister in-law and her husband a few years back. Idea being that the parents gave the business to the kids, kids promised to support the parents into retirement. Through (very) bad business and financial management by BOTH parents in-law and sister in-law (basically living beyond their means and racing to get cash out of the business before each other) the business has gotten into trouble and now the bank is foreclosing and wanting to sell the business property. The real estate market has collapsed and the business property is not selling so now the bank is starting to target my wife's parents house to sell.

 

Obviously my wife is keen to bail out her parents so as they don't loose their house (even though they she leff school at 15 to support the family (including the sister that was given the business).

 

My wife doesn't work and has chosen not to since having kids (6, 10, 13). I work like a dog in a small business, don't spend money on myself (hardly) and haven't had more than a weekend off in more than two years.

 

Additionally, I have had a very very bad relationship with my wife's parents (they actually fired my wife from the business to make way for her sister before giving the business to the sister). My father in law has previously punched me and called the police and told them lies about me (which resulted in an AVO being put on me against my children). A thousand times over the past 15 years I have sworn to have nothing to do with them anymore (constant bad things coming from them.......like when our fist baby was born and I was a stressed out young dad I was still paying their utility bills). I could go on for ten thousand words as to how crap they have often made my life feel over the years. I've wanted ask my wife to have nothing to do with them, but understand that they are her parents and not matter how bad they treat me (and her) she will alwasy love them and want to help them.

 

Now, the parents in-law need $500 000 to save their house. I have the money, because I work hard and don't spend it. I basically I am trying to create a situation that I can retire at a reasonable age (50 or 55) after being the SOLE bread winner for my family. My wifes family have all the nice cars, the nice kitchens the international holidays. My family hasn't done that and because we haven't we are able to...and expected to, bail out my parents in law and save their home. Great, but it means that I have to work another 5 - 10 years of my life doing something that really I don't like doing (only doing it because I have a family and my wife won't work).

 

I am torn between the moral obligations to save family members and the feeling that am being totally shafted.

 

I am asking for help as I don't have any elders or close friends around me......I work

 

Thanks

 

Ben

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Don't give them any money. If it was health problems or something not directly attributable to their poor choices that caused their predicament, you could consider helping, but they caused this mess and it's theirs to suffer through. You live beyond your means, this is often the consequence. You know this which is why your family lives modestly and saves. Look to the ant and grasshopper.

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You have no obligation...legal or moral to support them.

Your primary obligation is to your wife and 3 kids.

They can sell their house and their nice cars...and work.

You can remind them that they excused your wife from the business...and since she isn't the one that was raping the business...she will continue on, always..as a mother to your kids.

 

Please ensure immediately that your wife cannot be manipulated by her parents and give them money behind your back.

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You have no obligation...legal or moral to support them.

Your primary obligation is to your wife and 3 kids.

They can sell their house and their nice cars...and work.

You can remind them that they excused your wife from the business...and since she isn't the one that was raping the business...she will continue on, always..as a mother to your kids.

 

Please ensure immediately that your wife cannot be manipulated by her parents and give them money behind your back.

Yep ,your obligation is to your own children not your in-laws. And it sounds like throughout your wife's life they've made her their Patsy. Time to put an end to that.

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Absolutely not. I would keep an eye on your money now to make sure your wife isn't funneling your hard earned money to pay for these saps. You are under no obligation. Like others have said don't pay for their stupidity.

 

I would suggest to your wife, if she wants to help them, tell her to a get a part time job. Then she can use her own money. Not yours.

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I also don't think it is a good idea to bail the parents out. Some people just have bad luck and experience catastrophic events that lead them to problems like this. Other people make a series of poor choices over their lifetime and inevitably find themselves in your in-laws situation. I think your in-laws are the latter. If you give them money, they will continue to live an extravagant lifestyle and may find themselves in the same situation down the road anyway. What difference does it make if their home is foreclosed on in 2014 or 2020? You would only buy them time at the cost of your own retirement. The only problem I could see is if your wife really wants to help them, it could cause a rift in your marriage. You are the one that gets paid for what you do. She does not earn a paycheck but she is no less a contributing partner, is she not? Perhaps if she really wants to help them you both can agree to help by providing a much smaller amount that will appease her feeling that she needs to help them while not losing your savings. You say they are half a million in debt??

 

They may have to downsize, but they will not starve.

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Absolutely not. I would keep an eye on your money now to make sure your wife isn't funneling your hard earned money to pay for these saps. You are under no obligation. Like others have said don't pay for their stupidity.

 

I would suggest to your wife, if she wants to help them, tell her to a get a part time job. Then she can use her own money. Not yours.

 

I agree with this. Especially the part about watching the money closely.

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If they are foreclosed on, they can go live with your sister-in-law, no?

 

Honestly, I don't think you should help them to that extent. This isn't just about your retirement. You have 3 kids to think about, and their college expenses, etc. Plus you need to have $ saved away in case you suddenly can't work for any reason. I don't see any reason for you to help in that regard and they should be grateful for whatever help you have provided so far, but it doesn't sound like they are.

 

I wasn't clear on whether your wife was actually ASKING you to give them money, or whether you were just feeling guilt/pressure from somewhere (yourself?) but frankly it's not your problem.

 

I have the same issues with my boyfriend's parents btw (been together 4 years) - they are in a hole due to bad businesses/dealings, about to get foreclose on, etc. and sorry to say it, I would never in a million years give them any money because I know it would be gone in a heartbeat.

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You have no financial obligations towards your in-laws. In today's market you would be doubly foolish to squander your retirement over two in-laws who already treat you like crap. Besides would they do it for you? Help of that sort should be reserved for the people who would do the same for you, not the jerks who come around with their hands out while giving you a hard time. They're grown adults and if you take on paying for them then guess what you'll always have them sucking off of you.

 

No, tell them and the wife it's not negotiable. The answer is no. Your children are your responsibility, their children are theirs.

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They had their whole lives to get ready for retirement and then banked on the company doing well no matter what. That is such poor planning...

 

No. I would not give them any money. If their life was endanger or they had now place to stay and would be homeless I would do something for them. But no way in heck am I paying for their house.

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