A new career at 62 years old
Gerri gives her tips on seeking out job training, choosing bankruptcy and sorting out debt in divorce.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Gerri Willis, CNN's personal finance editor, answers readers' questions, providing actionable advice in this difficult economy.
Question 1. I'm a 62-year-old college grad. I was in the same industry for 30 years. Is there any program to re-train me? We are in danger of losing everything we've worked for all our lives. I'm not a quitter. I just want to work. - Sandy
You should check out aarp.org/realrelief. AARP has training assistance programs and employment programs to help older people navigate the workforce.
This site also has an assessment test where you can identify what job options or careers best fit your skill set. And remember that some community colleges let older people take classes - or at least-sit in on classes for no charge.
Question 2. My family has fallen victim to these hard times. I have been out of work and cannot continue to make my credit card payments. I have no choice at this time but to file for bankruptcy. Should I go through a debt consolidation agency or should I file for bankruptcy? - S.P.
In debt consolidation you basically take out one big loan and roll in all the smaller loans.
So, in theory, you're just digging yourself deeper into debt. Bankruptcy may be a good option if you have high credit card debt. If you do file, there are some things that are protected, like college savings, any social security payments and other assets up to a point - like your car.
Make sure you talk to a credit counselor first. Bankruptcy isn't cheap. It can cost $1,000-$4,000. For more information, go to the American Bankruptcy Institute.
Question 3. After ten years of marriage, my wife wants a divorce. I finally saw some of our credit card debt and it's over $50,000. She opened several accounts and put me as an authorized user. I had absolutely no idea. Is there any way to protect myself? - Greg, Illinois
Good news here Greg.
Since you're an authorized user, you're not liable for the debt according to Credit.com and you can have those items removed from your credit reports - which you'll definitely want to do. Now, if you had co-signed for the cards or applied jointly - that would be a different story and you might be on the hook.
Got a question about jobs or unemployment? We want to hear from you. Send us an email and a picture and your question could be answered in an upcoming story on CNNMoney.com.