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Struggling with debt? Ask a debt adviser a question

edited 24 July 2018 at 2:41PM in Debt-Free Wannabe
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  • HI everyone,

    I've got one default account which is going to to be dropped off my credit report in 6 months. Its has been passed to collection agency. I have not paid off the debt. What is the best approach ? should I wait and expect it to drop off. I have suffered enough for almost six years by having this default. Paying it now does not make me any good. but I was told they might take me to court just weeks before its six years period. Plus they don't have my current address and I did not notify them of changing address.

    What is the best approach ? contact them ? leave it ?

    Thanks in advance .

    Mike.
  • edited 27 November 2016 at 3:33PM
    motatomotato Forumite
    1 posts
    edited 27 November 2016 at 3:33PM
    I am living outside the EU and have been doing so for 8 years. I had some outstanding debts in the debts in the UK when I left. I would to address any issues that could be caused by these debts should I ever return to the UK. I have not been paying my student loan and have not had contact with the student loans company for about 9 years.

    I think the first step is to check my credit file but I am concerned my details will logged and I will be contacted by creditors before I am ready to deal with the situation. I also would like to check for any CCJs against me and wonder if any of the debts can now be statute barred if I CCJ has not been issued.

    I am unsure of the exact amounts of the debts maybe about 6000 (not including stduent loan) or more. I am also worried the amount will have increased signficantly as high interest rates might have been applied.

    Once these issues are settled, I would like to re-start voluntary national insurance contributions from abroad.

    Any advice on the most advantageous way to deal with the situation would be much appreciated.

    Thank you
  • StepChange_RachaelStepChange_Rachael Organisation Representatives - Private Messages may not be monitored
    375 posts
    Third Anniversary 100 Posts
    ✭✭
    Hi Mike

    Thanks for your post.

    Default notices will come off your credit file after 6 years but it doesn’t mean the debt is wiped off.

    The Statute of Limitations Act which stops a debt being enforced through the court can only be used if there has been no acknowledgement of the debt from yourself or payments made within a 6 year period.

    The creditors could take the debt to a County Court and set a County Court Judgement (CCJ) against the debt. This will show on your credit file and have some negative impact while it is on there.

    It is up to you to update the creditor of a change in address. It’s possible the creditors have sent you correspondence and have been chasing for the debt but at the wrong address.

    If you’ve not checked your credit file recently it might be worth doing as the creditor now collecting for the debt may have already taken the debt to court and issued a CCJ without you knowing, as the paper work may have been sent to your old address. You could also contact Northampton Bulk court to see if a CCJ is registered against you.

    If this has already happened it will show on your credit file and you’d need to have the debt re-determined through court to come to an affordable payment and stop any enforcement action.

    If the debt hasn’t gone further than the collections agency then it’s up to you how you’d want to go forward with the debt, as it’s impossible to say if the credit will pursue the debt through the court.

    By acknowledging the debt and making affordable payments the collection agency is less likely to take the debt to court as they are already receiving a payment. However, they do have the right to do this and often will take the debt to court just before the 6 year period to guarantee repayment if no payment is in place.

    If you decide to go ahead and look at options to acknowledge and deal with the debt then we can help you explore suitable solutions for this and any other debts you have.

    Also if the debt is registered as a CCJ already then we can advise you on the next steps going forward.

    You can find our contact details here.

    Thanks
    Rachael

    mike2017 wrote: »
    HI everyone,

    I've got one default account which is going to to be dropped off my credit report in 6 months. Its has been passed to collection agency. I have not paid off the debt. What is the best approach ? should I wait and expect it to drop off. I have suffered enough for almost six years by having this default. Paying it now does not make me any good. but I was told they might take me to court just weeks before its six years period. Plus they don't have my current address and I did not notify them of changing address.

    What is the best approach ? contact them ? leave it ?

    Thanks in advance .

    Mike.
    I work as a debt advisor for StepChange Debt Charity and have specific permission from Martin to post on these boards to try and help those in debt. Read more information on StepChange Debt Charity in the Debt Problems: What to do and where to get help article. If you find you're struggling with debt and you need further help try our online advice facility Debt Remedy.

    Don't be afraid of getting debt advice. We'll help you take one more step towards getting help with your debt.
  • StepChange_RachaelStepChange_Rachael Organisation Representatives - Private Messages may not be monitored
    375 posts
    Third Anniversary 100 Posts
    ✭✭
    Hi

    Thanks for your post and welcome to the forum.

    First of all regarding the student loan, dealing with them depends on whether it is an old style student loan where you’d have been expected to defer payments each year or if it’s a new style student loan where it would automatically be deducted from your income before you recieve your wage.

    Here is a link to our website about the different types of student loans and how they can be enforced.

    To check if the other debts have been taken to a County Court Judgement (CCJ) you can either check your credit file or contact the Northampton Bulk Court. The bulk court holds information on registered CCJs. However, by doing a credit search yourself, it is generally a soft search and shouldn’t cause creditors to start contacting you out of the blue.

    If the creditors haven’t taken the debts through court then they may be Statute Barred, but only if you’ve made no acknowledgement of the debt including payments within a 6 year period. Not all debts can be statute barred or have the same time period.

    There’s certainly a way forward to deal with any debts you have but to find the best way forward you’d need to know where you stand with the debts including the balances and type of debt.

    Once you know your full financial situation then we’d be able to discuss the debts with you further and find a suitable solution.

    You can find our contact details here.

    Take care
    Rachael

    motato wrote: »
    I am living outside the EU and have been doing so for 8 years. I had some outstanding debts in the debts in the UK when I left. I would to address any issues that could be caused by these debts should I ever return to the UK. I have not been paying my student loan and have not had contact with the student loans company for about 9 years.

    I think the first step is to check my credit file but I am concerned my details will logged and I will be contacted by creditors before I am ready to deal with the situation. I also would like to check for any CCJs against me and wonder if any of the debts can now be statute barred if I CCJ has not been issued.

    I am unsure of the exact amounts of the debts maybe about 6000 (not including stduent loan) or more. I am also worried the amount will have increased signficantly as high interest rates might have been applied.

    Once these issues are settled, I would like to re-start voluntary national insurance contributions from abroad.

    Any advice on the most advantageous way to deal with the situation would be much appreciated.

    Thank you
    I work as a debt advisor for StepChange Debt Charity and have specific permission from Martin to post on these boards to try and help those in debt. Read more information on StepChange Debt Charity in the Debt Problems: What to do and where to get help article. If you find you're struggling with debt and you need further help try our online advice facility Debt Remedy.

    Don't be afraid of getting debt advice. We'll help you take one more step towards getting help with your debt.
  • what are the guidelines on asking a cc company to freeze the interest on your cards?
  • StepChange_KirstyStepChange_Kirsty Organisation Representatives - Private Messages may not be monitored
    180 posts
    Hi Petitmale,

    Welcome to the forum.

    There are no specific guidelines on asking a credit card company to freeze the interest on your cards as it always down to the individual lender whether they would agree to do this.

    Creditor’s will usually only agree to freeze the interest if you’re in financial difficulties and often they will advise you to contact an organisation such as ourselves who can provide you with free and impartial debt advice.

    If you’re looking for the credit card companies to freeze your interest and charges it sounds like you might be struggling with your repayments at the moment so you might benefit from some additional advice for your individual circumstances.

    There are a couple of ways you can get in touch with us:

    Firstly, you can use the Debt Remedy tool within our website. This is an anonymous, self-help tool which will guide you through the process of putting a budget together in your own time and will recommend the right solution for your situation.

    Alternatively, if you would prefer to speak to us over the phone, you can call our Helpline on 0800 138 1111 and have a debt advice session with one of our specialist advisors. We are open from 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday and 8am to 4pm on Saturdays. Calls are free from all landlines and major mobile phone networks.

    I hope this is helpful.

    All the best.

    Kirsty
    petitmale wrote: »
    what are the guidelines on asking a cc company to freeze the interest on your cards?
    I work as a debt advisor for StepChange Debt Charity and have specific permission from Martin to post on these boards to try and help those in debt. Read more information on StepChange Debt Charity in the Debt Problems: What to do and where to get help article. If you find you're struggling with debt and you need further help try our online advice facility Debt Remedy.

    Don't be afraid of getting debt advice. We'll help you take one more step towards getting help with your debt.
  • Jaffa_pigJaffa_pig Forumite
    188 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Hi,

    We could really do with some help, as we are struggling with our debts at the moment. I am disabled and lost most of my PIP benefit a couple of years ago. We then couldn't keep up the payments on our credit cards/loan, so decided to sell our house and buy something cheaper, so we could pay off our debts. Everything that could go wrong went wrong with our move. We lost two houses at the last minute, through no fault of our own and eventually had to move into a rental house, as our buyers wouldn't wait any longer. Desperate to find something quickly, we ended up buying a new build through the shared ownership scheme. Unfortunately we had to pay way over our budget, so after all the solicitor's fees and money lost through renting, we weren't any better off. We have now reached crisis point, as by the time we have paid all our monthly bills and minimum payments on our credit cards, we are over £200 in debit each month and that's before allowing any money for food or petrol. We could really do with some advice on what to do next. We owe about £24,000 and own 75% of our new home outright with no mortgage. The house was worth £190,000 when we bought it 6 months ago. We have been considering getting a mortgage, but as we are both in our 50's we don't know if we would get one. We also looked at equity release, but as I am 53, I don't think we would qualify. My husband is in full time work, but it's not a high paying job. We really don't want to have to sell our house again, if at all possible.
  • StepChange_KirstyStepChange_Kirsty Organisation Representatives - Private Messages may not be monitored
    180 posts
    Hi Jaffa Pig,

    Thank you for your post.

    I’m sorry to hear about the difficulties you’ve had with your move over the last few years. It must have been a really difficult period for you. You’ve come to the right place for some advice though. We’ll definitely be able to help.

    You’re right that you would not qualify for equity release at this time as the criteria states that you must be 55 based on the youngest applicant and if you are married you would need to make a joint application. It is possible though that you might want to reconsider this option in a couple of years’ time.

    In the meantime we need to look at what other options you might have to deal with the outstanding debts. You mentioned you are in a debit of £200 each month after you have paid your household bills and the minimum payments on your credit cards. I would say you should only pay your creditors what you can afford and this means looking at your budget a little bit differently. You need to work out how much your monthly costs are including your food and petrol and then whatever is left over can then be paid to your creditors. You shouldn’t need to struggle each month to put food on the table because you’ve paid your unsecured creditors first.

    A good way of working out your budget is by using our online Debt Remedy tool where you can enter your income, expenditure and list of creditors. You’ll then be able to see how much you have left over on a monthly basis to pay your creditors. We’ll also be able to recommend to you the best way of dealing with your debts going forward.

    I hope this is helpful but if you have any questions don’t hesitate to reply to this post or get in touch with us directly.

    Best Wishes

    Kirsty


    Jaffa_pig wrote: »
    Hi,

    We could really do with some help, as we are struggling with our debts at the moment. I am disabled and lost most of my PIP benefit a couple of years ago. We then couldn't keep up the payments on our credit cards/loan, so decided to sell our house and buy something cheaper, so we could pay off our debts. Everything that could go wrong went wrong with our move. We lost two houses at the last minute, through no fault of our own and eventually had to move into a rental house, as our buyers wouldn't wait any longer. Desperate to find something quickly, we ended up buying a new build through the shared ownership scheme. Unfortunately we had to pay way over our budget, so after all the solicitor's fees and money lost through renting, we weren't any better off. We have now reached crisis point, as by the time we have paid all our monthly bills and minimum payments on our credit cards, we are over £200 in debit each month and that's before allowing any money for food or petrol. We could really do with some advice on what to do next. We owe about £24,000 and own 75% of our new home outright with no mortgage. The house was worth £190,000 when we bought it 6 months ago. We have been considering getting a mortgage, but as we are both in our 50's we don't know if we would get one. We also looked at equity release, but as I am 53, I don't think we would qualify. My husband is in full time work, but it's not a high paying job. We really don't want to have to sell our house again, if at all possible.
    I work as a debt advisor for StepChange Debt Charity and have specific permission from Martin to post on these boards to try and help those in debt. Read more information on StepChange Debt Charity in the Debt Problems: What to do and where to get help article. If you find you're struggling with debt and you need further help try our online advice facility Debt Remedy.

    Don't be afraid of getting debt advice. We'll help you take one more step towards getting help with your debt.
  • Hi. I'm completely new to posting on forums, so I hope I'm getting this right.
    I would say I reasonably money savy .... Or not after writing this. I look after the money in our house. My husband is aware of our status but prefers to let me handle things. We are in debt and I don't like it. We had some building work done last year, took a further advance on the mortgage to do it, it wasn't enough, no where near in fact. We took a further £13k on a low rate loan over 10 yrs. further to that we have 3 credit cards. Lloyds with £6800 of a £8300 limit.
    Virgin with £4800/£5000 and mbna £3800/£4300. All of the cards are 0% and finish over a 6m period in 2018. We have DD in place for each card. £100,£100 and £50 respectively. I want to get as much of the cards cleared as possible before were due to remortgage 04/18. I'm hoping we will have a 60% ltv. So it's all in hand, I have a vague goal. But the main bone of contention is my overdraft which I'm always right up to. It's £1370, I get paid £1100 each month and I'm paying £40/50 pm in charges for the privilege. I'd much rather pay that money into clearing it.
    But can't see a way forward - none of the cc offer a money transfer and I have no other idea.
    My husband has very little surplus cash - he pays all the house hold bills. I have about £600 a month after my commitments - however that £600 has to cover food for the month for 4, diesel and any other expenses, like school trips, birthday party's, new school uniform etc.
    I have no means to do overtime, my husband does but that's seasonal and won't be till around Easter. I can't take a second job as it's just not feasible. I should add we have £700 outstanding with Very and £200 with Argos which comes out my £600. I've cut up my debenhams and outfit store cards and the 3 cc to prevent additional spending as well as disassociating stored card details from PayPal,Amazon and the like.
    We're on a water meter, pay minimum on virgin tv, have an employee discount on gas/electric, have sim only deals on mobiles, don't want to change mortgage deal till its up and were in a finically better place.
    So can I do any more ? Is there anything I'm missing? Should I consolidate 2 or more cards, as I've currently allocated £250 pm to clear debts is that money working to the best advantage ?
    A fresh pair of eyes and a different take on things would be appreciated.
    TIA
  • Jaffa_pigJaffa_pig Forumite
    188 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Thanks for the quick reply. We filled in the debt remedy thing last night and it suggested we go for a Debt Management Plan as the first choice, with the only other option being to sell our house. If we do the DMP it said our creditors might take legal action, does that mean there is a chance we might lose our house, or possessions?

    I will be 55 in December next year and applying for equity release at that time seems like a good option. Would a bad credit rating (from the DMP) stop us getting an equity release scheme next year?

    Lastly, would a home owners loan be a good option for us? It wasn't mentioned in our debt remedy plan, but would enable us to consolidate our debts into one lump sum and spread the repayments over 15 years.

    Thanks for your help,

    Sally
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