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Teen Wonders If She Should Sue Parents For Damaging Her Credit Score By Putting Their Bills In Her Name

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Woman calculating credit card bill

An 18-year-old girl is having trouble trying to apply for her first credit card after it was immediately declined because of a low credit score.

At first, she was confused, but then she realized that her parents had been using her name on phone and utility bills and without realizing it, accrued so many late fees and bad credit that her score went all the way down to 520.

Now, she’s wondering if taking her parents to family court.

She went to a classy place on Reddit where all troubled children (and adults) go to sort out their problems or simply vent about a situation in which they feel they might have been wrong — the well-known subreddit called “r/AmItheA--hole,” or AITA for short.

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The internet philosophers that peruse this subreddit will forever be glad to listen to your request and then give you a rating based on their own, personally-informed opinion on your situation — sometimes even offering you some sound advice.

At the most basic level, since the question is “Am I the A--hole?” the ratings are either you’re “Not The A--hole” (NTA), or “You’re The A--hole” (YTA), with some more complicated ratings — but these are the most common.

“Ever since I was an early teen, my parents had my name on the phone and utility bills,” she explained. “I thought nothing of it at the time, but bills were occurring late fees and I was being penalized for their carelessness.”

Unfortunately, your credit score is wildly important in the United States for whenever you want to make any sizeable purchase or take out a loan or even get a job or rent an apartment.

A credit score of 520 is absurdly low and could take years upon years to fix, but fortunately, there’s an out.

“The credit records matched my suspicions, and the financial advisor told me I should take my parents to family court to have these records rectified,” she continued. “I don't believe my parents had malicious intent, but I'm just about to start my financial life and feel like this will slow me down.”

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Maybe the financial advisor knows things that I don’t and that taking the parents to court could magically fix the bad credit, but I’m not sure the parents need to be taken to court in order to fix the problem.

However, this isn’t the question that needs to be answered. The question is would she be the “a--hole” for taking them to court regardless.

A lot of people agree that she is “Not the A--hole,” or NTA.

“NTA. Your credit score dominates your life,” said the top comment. “Any large purchase you want to make, buying a car, renting an apartment, even jobs check your credit report. It’s unfortunate that they did this but they have to take responsibility otherwise your life will suffer.”

At this point, it’s not only about fixing the credit score — even though that’s very important — it’s about them accepting responsibility and learning from their mistakes and carelessness that’s costing their daughter.

“NTA. What they did was calculated, illegal, and abusive,” said another top comment. “They absolutely knew what they were doing, putting bills in your name. The only reason to do that is if you've already ruined your own credit. Now they've ruined yours too.”

They added that taking it to court and solving it there would be the best course of action.

The poster said that their parents took the accusation “personally,” but it doesn’t matter when you’re ruining your daughter’s life and can’t even accept the responsibility.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.