Can A Debt Management Plan Help Me With All My Debts?

March 13, 2018

A Debt Management Plan in Northern Ireland is an informal arrangement that can help you to manage your problem debts. Here at Northern Ireland Debt Solutions we can negotiate with your creditors for you to simply pay one affordable monthly payment which we will then divide amongst your creditors. A Debt Management Plan can last for several years, however at the end of the plan your debts will be fully repaid.

Which Debts Can I Include in a Debt Management Plan?

In Northern Ireland you can include any of your unsecured debts in your Debt Management Plan. This means any debts which are not tied to a certain item or service which could be repossessed or cut off if you do not keep up repayments.

Examples of unsecured debts could include; bank overdrafts, credit cards, store cards, personal loans, payday loans and catalogue debts.

Which Debts Cannot Be Included in a Debt Management Plan?

Any debts which can be classed as ‘secured’ or ‘priority’ cannot be included in a Debt Management Plan in Northern Ireland. These include debts such as; mortgages or other loans secured on your house, rent, rates, hire purchase agreements, gas, electricity or water bills, landline or mobile phone bills, child maintenance arrears and criminal fines.

There are also a number of unsecured debts which you cannot include in your Debt Management Plan:

HMRC Debts

If you owe money to HMRC through unpaid tax, national insurance or VAT bills, then you will not be able to include these in your Debt Management Plan in Northern Ireland, or anywhere else in the UK. This is because Debt Management Plans tend to run over a number of years, whereas HMRC want any debts owed to them paid much sooner. In this case you should leave any tax etc. debts out of your DMP and contact HMRC directly and ask for a Time To Pay arrangement. Depending on your previous payment history they may allow you to pay your bill in 12 (or sometimes 24) monthly instalments.

County Court Judgements (CCJ’s)

If you already have a CCJ then the repayment terms will have already been set by the court and you are obliged to adhere to these. This can make negotiating a Debt Management Plan difficult as it can leave less money remaining to be shared between your other creditors via the plan. However if you are struggling to pay your CCJ then you can apply to the court to have the payments reduced, which may then be able to fit in with your overall plan.

Joint Debts

Although you can still include joint debts in your Debt Management Plan in Northern Ireland, this won’t stop your creditors from chasing the other person who jointly took out the debt with you (unless they have set up a separate DMP themselves).

Parking Fines

Although a parking fine may seem like a minor consideration if you are trying to arrange a DMP, if they remain unpaid the company who issued the fine has the right to get a court order which would allow them to employ bailiffs to recover the debt. This could result in your car either being clamped or even towed away. If you are struggling to pay a parking fine amount then it is a good idea to contact the company directly and try to arrange more affordable payment terms.

Can I Leave Any Debts Out of a Debt Management Plan?

A DMP is an informal and flexible debt management solution so you can choose to keep certain debts out of it if you so wish. However we would strongly recommend that you include all of your debts in the DMP as this will ensure that all of your creditors feel that they are being treated fairly and are thus more likely to agree to the terms of the DMP (which they are not actually obliged to do) and may also agree to freezing any interest or charges on your debt.

However there are some debts which we may understand if you want to leave out, such as debts to family and friends, especially if they are owed to cover the repayments on a loan that they have taken out on your behalf. This could also be the case for any loans for which a family member etc. may be acting as a guarantor.

If you are struggling with problem debt in Northern Ireland, then contact Northern Ireland Debt Solutions today. We can arrange a free and confidential same day meeting to discuss your issues and will then be able to advise and arrange the correct debt solution for you.

Lawrence O'Hara

Insolvency Adviser

Tel: 028 2132 6269

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