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  • Ref- Bankruptcy Please Help...

    I am in the process of filling out my application for the Florida Highway Patrol Auxiliary Program. Eventually I want to become A Trooper. Before I go through this long process. I have a few questions
    thast concern me.

    A little about me I am 36 yrs old married male turn 37 in Sept. I am in pretty good shape and in good health.. Working out for the past couple of weeks to get ready. I am 6ft tall and 190 lbs. I have a clean driving record, only 2 speeding tickets a while back, no accidents. Never been arrested or in any kind of trouble.
    I have prior military experience I joined the Army for 3 yrs out of high school. I have an Honorable discharge. My employment history is pretty steady been in my current job 6 yrs. I work as a manager in a electrical wholesale company. Before that I was 3 yrs in my previous
    job. I am in the point of my life that I need to make a change. I always wanted to get into LE but never went with it. I am ready now.

    Her are the questions that concern me.

    Will my age be a big factor in getting hired. I have been told that some people have gone to the FHP academy in there fourty's.

    I am in the process of filing for Chapter 13 bankrupcty. I am paying $553.00 for 5 yrs to clear my debt. Will this be a problem.

    As far as the Marijuana topic that seems to always come up. I have smoked Marijuana in the past. Over 15 yrs ago. I dont associate myself with anyone that does drugs...
    If I say that i have not done any drugs, can they find out. The reason I ask is because I have heard of stories of people that have never done any drugs, and still fail the lie detector test.
    If I say no how will they find out... Should I just admit to doing it
    in the past

    Other than the things mentioned above I am confident that I can be a good Trooper...

    Thanks for all the help...
    Last edited by TROOPERWANNABE; 07-04-2004, 08:48 PM.

  • #2
    A couple of things come to mind. First with respect to age, most law enforcement agencies are exempt from the federal age discrimination act My own agency has a maximum age off of 36 or 37. You might want to see of FHP has a similar cut off.

    One time marijuana use 15 years ago shouldn't be a problem. With my agency, it's only if you have used within the past three years.

    The bankruptcy may be a little more difficult. In this case, you might want to call one of the FHP background investigators, tell him you want to join but don't want to waste the Department's time and money in testing if your bankruptcy will disqualify you. Most agencies of that size have plainly written criteria that defines and explains the circumstances under which someone may be rejected. Information of this nature is usually public record (at least, it is in my state). If bankruptcy is slam dunk rejection criteria, a good background investigator will tell you ahead of time to save the department, you and him a lot of unnecessary time and work down the line. It may be that they may want you to wait a certain amount of time after the bankruptcy so they can see if you really can be stable about your finances.

    In any case, good luck!
    Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

    Comment


    • #3
      Best Wishes But your age works against you and the credit will in some agencies rule you out.

      Comment


      • #4
        Trooper, age in Fl is not a big thing. My department was going to hire a 63 year old but he couldn't pass the P.A.T. Orlando hired and put through the academy a 61 or 62 year old. I forget his exact age.

        I have read FHP's website and called a friend that's on with FHP and he said 37 is not a problem. Half of my academy class were in their mid to late 30's.

        FHP is very strict with credit though. But as long as you have a court approved payment plan and you are paying you should not have a problem. I would recommend what L-1 said, call and speak with a recruiter. Tell him what your deal is. Now keep in mind he will tell you to apply anyway because FHP does not want to discriminate. So you may have to read between the lines alittle but you should be able to get the jist of what he is saying.

        Comment


        • #5
          TROOPERWANNABE,
          Your age will not hurt your chances. I work with quite a few Troopers that didn't start their law enforcement career until after they retired from another profession. Quite frankly, they bring valuable life experience to the department. I had several people in my academy class that were over 40 and they all did quite well.
          As far as the drug use question....If you did it, tell them. Being a law enforcement officer requires being honest. An officer on the road needs to be honest %100 of the time. If he is caught lying once, his entire reputation is at stake. The only thing that seperates us from the bad guys is our integrity. Start your career honestly, and end it that way.
          The credit issue may create a bump in the road for you but I wouldn't let that stop me from trying. I looked at the FHP website and this is what I found:
          HOW IMPORTANT IS MY CREDIT STATUS?
          Very important! Before applying, please make arrangements with all creditors with whom you have overdue accounts to pay the balance in full. If any accounts are with a collection agency, please rectify the situation before submitting the application. Also, provide all documentation regarding the repayment arrangements when you submit your supplemental application.

          WHAT CAN I DO TO IMPROVE MY CREDIT?
          Contact your local Consumer Credit Council for assistance or contact each creditor and enter into a repayment schedule plan. Ask the company to send a letter on company letterhead confirming the arrangements.

          Hope this helps a little. Let us know the outcome. Good luck!
          F.S.
          Last edited by Florida Smokey; 07-05-2004, 11:11 AM.

          Comment


          • #6
            Bankruptcy

            looks like you've gotten some good/informative answers. FHP is a good outfit,and very well respected nationwide.You didn't go into much detail regarding the mentioned drug issue(s). Don't blame you at all for that on this forum. I would recommend complete honesty on the application though. Bankruptcy probably won't be a problem,provided that this is the first and only time, that you're honest about it,and that you are currently in a court approved re-payment plan. Your age shouldn't be a factor,although I would feel a little sense of urgency in getting settled with FHP and getting my career started. Good luck on your application,and keep us posted on your progress.

            Comment


            • #7
              THANKS TO ALL..

              Thanks to everyone that responded. I think as long as I am honest I shold not have any problems. I also have a friend of mine who works in my local FHP office. She is a clerk and has worked there for about 12 years. Her father has been A trooper for almost 20yrs. She knows alot of people and she can help me...

              Do you think my idea of going in as an AUXILIARY is good.
              Also what are the chances that I will be stationed near my house here in Miami fla. I do not want to move if all possible...
              thanks again.

              Comment


              • #8
                I am friends with the BI for FHP in the Ft. Lauderdale/Miami area. I do not know much about the AUX program, but why would you go for that and not full time if you want to get into LE? There are also a lot of other agencies that will be more leanient (sp?) with credit issues than FHP, and they will give you step raises. As far as being stationed near Miami, they can put you ANYPLACE they want.
                In law enforcement, the customer is ALWAYS wrong.

                In God we trust. Everyone else is run through NCIC.

                Sometimes there is justice. Sometimes there is just us.

                I'd rather be tried by 12 then carried by 6.


                The opinions given in my posts do not necessarily reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only.

                Comment


                • #9
                  out of curiousity, what does your credit history have to do with employment? i have never been able to make the connection. are they afraid you will try to use your position to steal or embezel money somehow? someone enlighten me please.
                  Improvise, Modify, Adapt and Overcome.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by mikeSCSO
                    out of curiousity, what does your credit history have to do with employment? i have never been able to make the connection. are they afraid you will try to use your position to steal or embezel money somehow? someone enlighten me please.
                    It demonstrates a lack of responsibility usually if you get so far into debt that it causes you problems. It requires a certain amount of maturity to realize that every time you plunk down that credit card, you're responsible to pay for whatever you just bought. Some people have difficulty with that concept.

                    Showing poor judgment with finances will often indicate the kind of judgment you will show as a cop.
                    "Life's tough, it's tougher if you're stupid." John Wayne

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      " demonstrates a lack of responsibility usually if you get so far into debt that it causes you problems. It requires a certain amount of maturity to realize that every time you plunk down that credit card, you're responsible to pay for whatever you just bought. Some people have difficulty with that concept.

                      Showing poor judgment with finances will often indicate the kind of judgment you will show as a cop."


                      I can't agree with that answer because over half the US population is in debt, under debt, over debt and so on.

                      And in the past 5 years it's gotten worse because of the economy. Many people lost jobs, collected unemployment for 6-12 months, still couldn't find a job and then took some job paying barely above minimum wage.

                      When you were making 50k+ per year and are forced to take a job that pays less then 20k per year, it's not always about demonstrating your "responsibility" of finances.

                      While it's true some things you can cut, many things you can not.

                      Somebody who falls into debt because they would rather pay for food, electric, heat, and other things rather then pay for a car or other stuff for their families isn't demonstrating a lack of responsibilities to me.

                      Somebody who pays all their debts but can't feed their own family, well to me, that's a lack of responsibility.

                      While it's true many things can be avoided, when over half the country, if not more, is in debt, I just dont see how that will make you a good or bad cop.

                      And I know many cops who are in debt because after they became a cop they realized, the pay was half of what they used to make.

                      Does that make them bad cops?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        NO mnay officers have bad credit after getting hired etc. It just weeds out those that agencies feel are showing little personal responsibility.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by pjam3
                          [B

                          I can't agree with that answer because over half the US population is in debt, under debt, over debt and so on.

                          And in the past 5 years it's gotten worse because of the economy. Many people lost jobs, collected unemployment for 6-12 months, still couldn't find a job and then took some job paying barely above minimum wage.


                          [/B]
                          And that says a lot about our society. Yeah, there are those cases where people had to take lower paying jobs, but they sure don't constitute over half the population.

                          Young people today think they should have all the stuff their parents have, like new cars, stereos, etc right away instead of waiting until they've saved the money or can afford the payments. People have to borrow to buy food because they spent so much on crap that they have to make payments on they can no longer buy the necessities. Most of the people in heavy debt could easily afford to buy the food, etc. they need, but they can't because they bought so much stuff on credit that they wanted, not needed.

                          One of the problems lies with the business community who extends credit to every idiot that asks for it. I had to wait until I was 21 to get credit and then I couldn't get much until I proved I was making decent money and could be trusted. My stepson got all kinds of credit cards sent to him when he turned 18 and was working for 6 bucks an hour. Of course he got up to his [email protected]@ in debt, he was a kid! Unfortunately, it's become a standard in our society to go and buy on credit w/o considering the consequences.

                          I don't buy the victim crap about being over your head in debt. Live reasonably within your means and you'll do fine, but over half our population can't seem to do that.
                          Last edited by retdetsgt; 07-08-2004, 01:13 PM.
                          "Life's tough, it's tougher if you're stupid." John Wayne

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I do agree with one of societies major problems is " I WANT IT NOW.. without working for it.. philosophy".

                            I call it the "reality tv generation." Everybody wants 15 minutes of fame without actually doing anything to earn it or work for it.

                            However, I disagree that it's just an issue with the youth.

                            Credit use and borrowing became rampant during the Reagan years to borrow, borrow, and borrow some more. Live for Now. That was the 1980's for the youth and those beyond youth.

                            Onward toward today, it's a common theme.

                            However, without borrowing, nobody could afford a car, a house, especially on the North East coast these days.

                            and when rent and mortgages cost over $1200 bucks per month for small places, there lies a problem.

                            In many states, our older politicians have borrowed beyond belief and can't pay it back, so they raise property taxes and other taxes.

                            HEll, in NJ, our governors, past and present have borrowed on future generations revenues for today. They've done this numerous times, over and over and over again.

                            Most of our politicains are over 50 years old, not under. So don't blame the youth because they borrowed it.

                            and then there is the "famous celebrity" of the moment donald trump. Here is a man who borrows more money then god, then refuses to pay it back. The banks fold, give him more loans and everything works out, even though his casinos are the ones who are always losing the most money compared to the others.

                            He isn't exactly the "youth" culture.

                            All i'm saying is, it's not that the youth of today aren't doing stupid things like going into debt, it's just that, it's not only them.

                            I guess they learn from thier parents and their elders after all.

                            Hell, even half our celebrities file for bankrupcy these days.

                            I'm not saying it's right, but when over half the country is in debt because of their own stupidities and others, i find it hard to believe a person would be disqualified because of their Credit history.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by pjam3
                              I do agree with one of societies major problems is " I WANT IT NOW.. without working for it.. philosophy".

                              I call it the "reality tv generation." Everybody wants 15 minutes of fame without actually doing anything to earn it or work for it.

                              However, I disagree that it's just an issue with the youth.

                              Yeah, but a lot of the youth that had that culture are now in their 30's or older. And I do think it's a matter of personal responsibility and judgment when people get over their heads. People here talk about cops being heavy in debt, but I only knew a very few that did that. The vast majority where I worked did fine. One Lt. did go bankrupt, but that was because of a side business he got into w/o protecting his personal finances through incorporation. Not because he got his own personal credit in trouble.

                              As far as government, look way past Reagan to Roosevelt and then Johnson if you want to talk about that. People blame Reagan like he just thought of the idea. Johnson put us in incredible inflation through his spending for the Vietnam war and the "Great Society". And at that time, personal debt wasn't all that bad in this country. Blaming the government doesn't wash. In fact blaming anyone other than the person you see in the mirror is baloney. There is no victim here of Donald Trump or anyone else.

                              As I said earlier, some people just can't grasp the concept that you have to eventually pay for whatever you bought with that credit card. It doesn't say much for them personally. Unless there was extinuating circumstances like a divorce, unexpected huge medical or something like that, I'd be reluctant to hire anyone who just spent themselves silly into uncontrollable debt.
                              Last edited by retdetsgt; 07-08-2004, 02:34 PM.
                              "Life's tough, it's tougher if you're stupid." John Wayne

                              Comment

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