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  • FIRST POST
    • Former MSE Andrea
    • By Former MSE Andrea 18th Nov 16, 12:05 PM
    • 9,419Posts
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    Former MSE Andrea
    Struggling with debt? Ask a debt adviser a question
    • #1
    • 18th Nov 16, 12:05 PM
    Struggling with debt? Ask a debt adviser a question 18th Nov 16 at 12:05 PM
    If you need help with your debts, this is the thread for you.

    Trained advisers from StepChange Debt Charity (formerly CCCS) are here and waiting to answer your debt questions. They're a friendly bunch so please don't be shy!

    There are three ways to get in touch:

    1 - Simply post your question below and the team will reply. If your question is about bankruptcy, then pop over to the Bankruptcy board.

    2 - If you would prefer to ask a question in private, feel free to send a message to StepChange Private Messages.

    3 - StepChange Debt Remedy is a free and confidential online debt advice tool. You can put a budget together at your pace, and you can also talk it over with an adviser through online chat.

    If you're a StepChange Debt Charity client already, please contact its Aftercare team rather than posting in this thread (their contact details are in your Welcome Pack).

    If you're self employed and need debt help please get in touch with Business Debtline.

    This is discussion thread part four, see parts one, two and three.


    If you haven't already, join the forum to reply!
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    Last edited by MSE Luke; 24-07-2018 at 1:41 PM.
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Page 60
  • StepChange_Kirsty
    Hi there,

    Thanks for your post.

    Relationship breakdowns are always difficult and we often see that debt can be a problem following a separation.

    With the Council Tax, as you are both liable for this debt they can chase either or both of you until the full debt is paid. They may still be chasing your ex-partner for the debt even if you have a wages arrestment but unfortunately you may find that you end up paying more than your ex-partner if she is not currently working.

    If your ex-partner took out the other debts without you knowing then speaking to Action Fraud is a very good idea. On the other hand if you took out the debts yourself but on behalf of your ex-partner you will still be liable to pay. Whilst I canít suggest how you can make more money, StepChange can offer you free help and advice on the best ways of dealing with your debts.

    In order to give you solutions advice weíd need to create a budget with you so we can understand your current situation and make sure the advice is tailored to your individual circumstances. There are a couple of ways to access our service:

    You can use our online Debt Remedy tool on our website. This is a self-help tool which guides you through the process of putting a budget together and will provide you with advice in the form of a personal action plan.

    Alternatively you can give us a call and speak to one of our expert Debt Advisors. You can find our contact details here.

    Either way weíll be happy to help.

    Kirsty



    reading through all of these issues makes me feel for all of you. I am in debt myself, mainly due to my ex-partner (i married her and now we have split up) I have moved back home with my parents. They know all about the debt. I started with over £3,000 debt. It is now at £2,000. I know there is no way of getting her to "pay her way" as I can't prove she done any of them. However one is council tax, the council say they are chasing both of us and because I work and she does not then I got my wages arrested. I managed to clear that and now have a payment plan for the next lot of council tax as well which again she is not paying. So basically i have my car, and i work and i have to pay her debt off and she pays nothing towards it and she can take our kids out to all sorts of fancy places with her friends and i have to scimp and scrape every penny. How is this in the least bit fair? I have written to action fraud and they are yet to get back to me. think its a waste of time being honest.

    Anyone offer advice on how to possibly get this paid off ASAP by making more money even working from home online or something to then move on with my life, get my own place and be a better person than her that has got so many different men around that I feel very uncomfortable with it as one of them spends his money on my children as he has loads of it.
    Originally posted by moneyman_34
    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_Kirsty
    Hi there,

    Thanks for your post.

    First thing I would say is please get back in touch! Even though youíve had a debt management plan (DMP) before with us we can still offer you help and advice.

    With a DMP, whether itís through StepChange or self-managed, the most important thing is that you can afford the monthly payments without it causing you further financial difficulty. I can see this is something you have now learnt from.

    When we set up DMPís, we make sure that a review is done at least once a year or sooner if there is a change in circumstances. Sometimes this means that payments will reduce or increase and itís a normal thing to happen during a DMP especially if it takes a few years to pay the debts. Please donít worry if you need to send them an updated budget which is more sustainable for you. Itís better for them to get regular affordable payments than for you to need to continue the debt cycle.

    Give us a call though and weíll be more than happy to help.

    Kirsty


    I have been on a stepchange dmp before, then went self managed and have been doing this for a while. However, I have been offering creditors payments I think are reasonable for the debt amount rather than the actual amount I can afford - that being the case, i have borrowed again just to keep my head above water and I could kick myself, I feel so stupid - another ridiculously high interest loan. I really want to start again with stepchange but am worried my creditors will think I'm mucking them about. I am panicking about writing to them again to offer lower payments due to my own stupidity. What would you suggest? Thank you for any advice
    Originally posted by Better place
    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_Kirsty
    Hi there,

    Thanks for your post.

    If youíve offered all of your creditors a fair share of the lump sum you have available but NRAM have not agreed to the settlement, there is nothing strictly to say you cannot revert to paying them by instalments (on the basis that NRAM is not secured).

    That being said, its possible NRAM could still decide to take legal action to recover their debt. There is some useful information on our website about what your creditors can and cannot do if you have defaulted which you can find here.

    Whilst I cannot give you a set answer here about what you should do, my concern is that if you pay £150 per month to NRAM it will still take you over 16 years to clear the debt and a lot can happen in this time. Perhaps a compromise could be made here. For example, if you were to pay NRAM the settlement figure which you had offered you could then arrange to pay the difference by instalments. Alternatively you could set enough money to aside to complete essential work to the property and pay the rest to NRAM again making the remaining debt more manageable.

    As the loan you have taken out is secured against the property itís important you ensure you can still pay this every month so the property is not at risk.

    Sorry Iíve not been able to give you a specific answer but I hope this helps.

    Kirsty




    Hi

    A little advice needed if possible. It's a very long story so I will try to get to the point. We have 5 creditors who we have been paying £1 a month to for 7 years. Our circumstances have improved slightly and we are trying to get this sorted. We have managed to get a secure loan and agreed settlement figures with 4 of the 5 creditors.
    This leaves 1, NRAM for 29k. They have said the won't budge on the figure and want all of it. After we have paid the other 4 off we will have aprox 25k left, the house is in extreme need of some work done, kitchen and windows as they are in a very very bad state. Whats the situation with me spending the money on the house and not paying NRAM off?
    I hope this makes sense

    Thanks
    Originally posted by Jt1979
    I would just like to add that we would like to start paying NRAM off at maybe £150 a month also.
    Again I hope this makes sense.

    Thanks
    Originally posted by Jt1979
    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.
    • EFC1234
    • By EFC1234 11th Apr 19, 10:21 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    EFC1234
    Hi,

    During my time at uni I got into debt by going into my overdraft (which is 0% interest), I accumulated around £2,000 and now in a steady job I have been paying it off but I want to start saving for a house but want to clear my debt first. I am curious to know if transferring this on to a credit card is a good idea? With my history, I am concerned about signing up for one but if it would benefit me for saving for a house and help me pay back my overdraft debt then I would consider it more.

    Any advice?

    Best
  • StepChange_Allen
    Hi,

    During my time at uni I got into debt by going into my overdraft (which is 0% interest), I accumulated around £2,000 and now in a steady job I have been paying it off but I want to start saving for a house but want to clear my debt first. I am curious to know if transferring this on to a credit card is a good idea? With my history, I am concerned about signing up for one but if it would benefit me for saving for a house and help me pay back my overdraft debt then I would consider it more.

    Any advice?

    Best
    Originally posted by EFC1234

    Hi there

    Welcome to the forum and thanks for posting.

    There are options to deal with this overdraft but it's hard to know which is best without knowing more about your situation (for example, the interest rate on the overdraft and your monthly budget). It may be worth having a look around the main MSE site for more ideas as it's not our main area of expertise. Briefly, I'd say you could consider:

    1. Continue repaying off the overdraft as fast as you can.

    2. There may be the odd credit card provider that will allow a transfer from an overdraft but I don't think it's common. If there are any charges, make sure they're not more than you're saving in overdraft interest. Don't take out cash off it to pay off the overdraft as cash withdrawals on credit cards are expensive.

    3. If there interest and charges are high, a small personal loan at a low interest rate could be an option, but be sure you can pay it back okay.

    I hope this helps a little.

    Allen
    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.
    • Rcwam88
    • By Rcwam88 12th Apr 19, 7:00 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Rcwam88
    Dro and council tax arrears
    I received a dro on the 13th of August 2018 which included my council tax bill for 2018/2019 as they had asked for it upfront so could be included.

    On the 20th of August my partner and kids moved in. We notified HMRC , DWP, even went to council put in a joint letting application for housing.

    I received a council tax bill this month. This is not covered by my dro but it stated I was getting a 25 percent discount. I rung up to inform them I shouldn't be getting the discount as my partner lives with me. They didn't have her down on the system as living with me. Today I received new bill which is including council tax from the 20th of August 2018 at full rate to the end of the tax year April. Around £800.

    Can they chase me for a debt that is covered by a dro or as my partner moving in given them a loophole to find a way around it.
    • Rocoliy
    • By Rocoliy 13th Apr 19, 10:40 AM
    • 3 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Rocoliy
    Hi my first time posting but really need some advice my husband has had credit card debts and for years now since before we were even married but he always paid them off then fell on hard times we have been burying our heads in the sand but really need to get things sorted. We both work but have always struggled with money without going into why and how the debt built up as it’ll take a long time but mainly through health problems in the past and change in jobs resulting in a cut in wages ... so on his credit report he has 10000 owing to cabot says default 2013 and Barclaycard 5000 says default 2014 and Lowell 2000 says default 2013. We aren’t sure of when he last paid anything on them as we don’t have any bank statements at a guess maybe 2013. He’s had no contact with any of them either since roughly 2013 we moved house in 2015 so we don’t receive anything in the post. We just need some advice on what to do is he better getting in touch now and coming up with a plan to pay them off ? We rent have barely any savings and have 2 children but both work .Any help appreciated.
  • StepChange_Kirsty
    Hi there,

    Thanks for your post.

    Whilst the debt relief order (DRO) would have covered your liability for the council tax 2018/2019 and they cannot chase you, your partner would still be liable for council tax for the period she lived in the property so they can chase your partner.

    Itís important your partner contacts the council to make an arrangement to repay the outstanding debt. If your partner would have difficulty with repayments to the council tax she can get in touch with StepChange and we can offer some help and advice. Our contact details can be found here.

    I hope this information is useful.

    Kirsty



    I received a dro on the 13th of August 2018 which included my council tax bill for 2018/2019 as they had asked for it upfront so could be included.

    On the 20th of August my partner and kids moved in. We notified HMRC , DWP, even went to council put in a joint letting application for housing.

    I received a council tax bill this month. This is not covered by my dro but it stated I was getting a 25 percent discount. I rung up to inform them I shouldn't be getting the discount as my partner lives with me. They didn't have her down on the system as living with me. Today I received new bill which is including council tax from the 20th of August 2018 at full rate to the end of the tax year April. Around £800.

    Can they chase me for a debt that is covered by a dro or as my partner moving in given them a loophole to find a way around it.
    Originally posted by Rcwam88
    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_Kirsty
    Hi there,

    Thanks for your post and welcome to the forum.

    Based on what youíve mentioned these debts may be classed as Statute Barred. If youíve not made any payments to these debts or sent any written acknowledgement in the last 6 years then under The Limitations Act 1980, the creditor would have lost its chance to enforce the debt through the court. However, it does not mean the debts are written off so the creditors can still send letters requesting payment.

    There is some useful information on our website about what The Limitation Act 1980 does and what you should do if you believe the debt is statute barred which you can find here.

    The defaults will automatically drop off your husbands credit file 6 years from the date they were issued.

    I hope this helps.

    Kirsty




    Hi my first time posting but really need some advice my husband has had credit card debts and for years now since before we were even married but he always paid them off then fell on hard times we have been burying our heads in the sand but really need to get things sorted. We both work but have always struggled with money without going into why and how the debt built up as itíll take a long time but mainly through health problems in the past and change in jobs resulting in a cut in wages ... so on his credit report he has 10000 owing to cabot says default 2013 and Barclaycard 5000 says default 2014 and Lowell 2000 says default 2013. We arenít sure of when he last paid anything on them as we donít have any bank statements at a guess maybe 2013. Heís had no contact with any of them either since roughly 2013 we moved house in 2015 so we donít receive anything in the post. We just need some advice on what to do is he better getting in touch now and coming up with a plan to pay them off ? We rent have barely any savings and have 2 children but both work .Any help appreciated.
    Originally posted by Rocoliy
    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.
    • Rocoliy
    • By Rocoliy 13th Apr 19, 3:10 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Rocoliy
    Thank you Kirsty for your fast reply and the information !
    • Barbie61
    • By Barbie61 15th Apr 19, 12:32 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 19 Thanks
    Barbie61
    Hello, I have a DMP in place which has been running for 3 years, I haven't adjusted the figure I pay despite direct debits increasing each year but now I am worried about the upcoming increase to the workplace pension this month and wondering if I should opt out. I only have another 8 years of working life left so it won't be anything impressive on retirement and I'm weighing this increase up against paying off more of my debt so that its paid earlier. I know you're not pension experts and not allowed to give advice but I'm concerned that if I reduce my monthly payment on the DMP that the creditors will want to take me to court or refuse to honour the 0% interest they have kindly agreed to.
    • round one
    • By round one 16th Apr 19, 2:58 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    round one
    For suggest me
    Hey,

    It's very informative content.

    Last month, I'm struggling with debt.

    One of my friends, tell me about FreeDebtHelpline.org

    But, I'm pretty sure It's suitable for me?

    My friends say. it's a Uk leading Debt Charity advertiser.

    Please help me with this matter.

    Thanks
  • StepChange_Allen
    Hello, I have a DMP in place which has been running for 3 years, I haven't adjusted the figure I pay despite direct debits increasing each year but now I am worried about the upcoming increase to the workplace pension this month and wondering if I should opt out. I only have another 8 years of working life left so it won't be anything impressive on retirement and I'm weighing this increase up against paying off more of my debt so that its paid earlier. I know you're not pension experts and not allowed to give advice but I'm concerned that if I reduce my monthly payment on the DMP that the creditors will want to take me to court or refuse to honour the 0% interest they have kindly agreed to.
    Originally posted by Barbie61

    Hi there

    Thanks for posting.

    I'm not sure if your DMP is with us or not, but certainly here we do an annual review of all DMPs, and encourage our clients to contact us upon any changes to their income and expenditure of any note.

    It's quite normal for DMP payments to go up and down, so I'd suggest that you do a review with whoever is managing your plan for you. Whether you opt in or out of a workplace pension is entirely up to you, but if your bills or living costs have increased over and above any increase in income, then your monthly payment may need to come down anyway.

    I hope that helps.

    Allen
    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_Rachael
    Hi

    Thanks for messaging.

    Iím not entirely sure who this organisation/company is. There are many different companies that run as debt advice services, some charge fees and others may only provide advice and then re-direct you to an outside company that again might charge fees to help manage a solution.

    If youíre looking for free debt advice and recommended solution through one organisation then at StepChange weíd be happy to help you.

    You can find more information from our website here, where youíll also find our contact details.

    Thanks
    Rachael






    Hey,

    It's very informative content.

    Last month, I'm struggling with debt.

    One of my friends, tell me about FreeDebtHelpline.org

    But, I'm pretty sure It's suitable for me?

    My friends say. it's a Uk leading Debt Charity advertiser.

    Please help me with this matter.

    Thanks
    Originally posted by round one
    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.
    • GOODIN
    • By GOODIN 17th Apr 19, 10:16 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    GOODIN
    Advice needed with response to my prove it letter.
    Hi,


    I recently got sent a letter and email from Lantern claiming I owe them £1625 for 4 different payday loans from 2013/14. All debts are showing settled/satisfied on my credit report so I sent them a prove it letter, this is the response I received




    "Thank you for your recent communication in relation to the above referenced account number.

    Our investigations may involve liaising with the original creditor or previous owner of the debt which can take some time. We will aim to respond to you with our findings within 30 days from the date of this communication. If further time is required, we will notify you accordingly.

    Your account has been placed on hold until we have concluded our investigations.
    Yours sincerely
    Lantern"




    The thing is they're calling my mobile and I've received nothing else in writing, just wondering what my options are? Should I be doing more than just ignoring the calls and waiting for a written response.




    Any advice would be great.
  • StepChange_Kirsty
    Hi there,

    Thanks for your post and welcome to the forum.

    If Lantern is still contacting you by phone despite saying it is on hold I would recommend making a formal complaint. As part of the complaint you can also request they remove your telephone number and only contact you in writing.

    Lantern will have 8 weeks to respond to your complaint but if youíve not received a response after 8 weeks or you are not happy with the response you can escalate your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service. You can find their details here.

    I hope this helps,

    Kirsty




    Hi,


    I recently got sent a letter and email from Lantern claiming I owe them £1625 for 4 different payday loans from 2013/14. All debts are showing settled/satisfied on my credit report so I sent them a prove it letter, this is the response I received




    "Thank you for your recent communication in relation to the above referenced account number.

    Our investigations may involve liaising with the original creditor or previous owner of the debt which can take some time. We will aim to respond to you with our findings within 30 days from the date of this communication. If further time is required, we will notify you accordingly.

    Your account has been placed on hold until we have concluded our investigations.
    Yours sincerely
    Lantern"




    The thing is they're calling my mobile and I've received nothing else in writing, just wondering what my options are? Should I be doing more than just ignoring the calls and waiting for a written response.




    Any advice would be great.
    Originally posted by GOODIN
    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_Kirsty
    Hello,

    Thanks for your post.

    Yes County Court Bailiffs would be able to access information about the keeper of a vehicle much more quickly that completing the DVLA form. They can use Automatic Number Plate Recognition technology (ANPR) to find out this information immediately.

    If youíre experiencing difficulty with any debts where a bailiff has been instructed I would highly recommend seeking debt advice. You are welcome to contact StepChange for free and confidential advice. You can find our contact details here.

    I hope this answers your question.

    Kirsty





    Hello, this is my first post and I have searched but do not know how to create a new thread so I'm posting here as it's along the same lines.

    My question is: Do county court bailiffs have to complete a version of DVLA form V888 to obtain vehicle keeper information, or do they have an expedited way? I understand that they can ask neighbors etc, I only want to know if they have an official process which is faster than mailing said form.


    My apologies if this is the wrong section. Any help pointing me in the right direction would be most appreciated. Thank you
    Originally posted by slimbee
    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.
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