Trapped under the Same Roof: David and Tracy

Above the Law?
"She's not happy with some of the things I've done with finances," David says. He explains how he tries to fight the system. "The bank foreclosed on us, and I chose an unconventional way. I decided to learn common law, and commerce, and fight the banks and deal with the collectors rather than going through bankruptcy," he says.  
 
[AD]Tracy questions her husband's financial acumen, because she says he hasn't made a house payment in months or paid property or income taxes. "He's generating documents that have millions of dollars on them. The 2007 tax return had $55 million on it. My husband did not make $55 million. He barely works. I was being billed civil penalty charges of $10,000 for filing a frivolous tax return that I had no knowledge of," she reveals. "I'm very worried about going to jail. I'm very scared I'm going to lose my kids and my life."
 
David says his faith will help him through rough financial times. "I believe in tithing," he says, referring to a religious practice of giving a tenth of one's income to one's church. "God owns everything. All he asks for is 10 percent."
 
"He was donating money to charitable contributions when we needed groceries or the children needed clothing," Tracy adds. "He's so busy trying to work his way to heaven that he's forgetting about what's right in front of him. I found out after we were married that he had been in a cult. You hear stuff like that and you're not going to want to be with somebody like that. I feel cheated; I feel betrayed."

David tells Dr. Phil that his income was dwindling and his house was in danger of foreclosure. "I decided, ‘I'm not going down without fighting.' So I decided to learn some things on the Internet," he says. 

"Are you filing fraudulent tax returns?" Dr. Phil asks David.

"That was a mistake," he concedes.

 

Watch Dr. Phil examine the documents David created to get out of debt.


"I understand your theory that currency is symbolic, and it's just representative, and if there's not gold behind it, then it's just paper, and all that. But [what you] claimed was that you had $55 million dollars worth of that paper," Dr. Phil says. He holds up a stack of forms. "Did you make up money orders for, like, $40,000 when you didn't have $40,000?"

"Yeah, with my social security number on it," Tracy says.

 

"Do you believe that it is fair and reasonable to accept goods and services from someone knowing that you're not going to pay for them?" Dr. Phil asks David.

"It depends," he replies. "I don't feel sorry for the banks, from what they've done to us."

"I'm frightened about what you've gotten us into, David," Tracy says through tears.

 

Dr. Phil turns to attorney Areva Martin. "What do you make of all this?" he asks.

[AD]"I'm very concerned for Tracy. I'm not here to advocate that she divorce her husband," Areva replies. She turns to the stay-at-home mom. "I am very concerned about the legal issues that are being created in your marriage, some of which can lead to criminal liability and civil liability. You've got options, and you have to know that you have options, but as long as you stay in a relationship with David, and David continues on the path that he's on, you're subjecting yourself to the worst nightmare. You're going to be in such a pit financially, it's going to be almost impossible to dig out of it."

After Areva's pronouncement, David turns to Dr. Phil. "I feel like she dramatized it a little bit," he says.

"When I look at made-up money orders, made-up promissory notes, civil penalties from the IRS, I don't think that's drama, David. That's reality," Areva counters. "These are legal obligations that she's obligated for."

Dr. Phil notes that David spends many hours on the Internet researching his theories on commerce. "If you're going to work that hard, why don't you just get a job and pay your bills?" he asks.

"I work hard. I have a dental lab," David replies.

"You work about three days a week right now," Tracy chimes in.

"I like working. When I'm busy, I'm busy. I used to work 16 hours a day," David says.

"Are you worried about your kids?" Dr. Phil asks.

"Yeah, I love them," David answers.

Watch an emotional Tracy confront her husband. And, Areva suggests solutions for Tracy to get out of debt.

Dr. Phil addresses David. "I think you need to unplug your printer," he quips.