What taxes are included in bankruptcy?

man running

A reader has asked which year’s income taxes are included in bankruptcy?  HMRC used to have a special status as a preferred creditor, but since 2003 tax debts are treated the same as other debts and are wiped out by bankruptcy. There are however a few complications, so this article looks at all the different […]

Millions getting deeper into debt in Britain

Debt statistics

StepChange, the charity which helps more than 500,000 people a year with their debts, has published an important new report on debt in Britain in 2014 called “Life on The Edge“. It looks at which types of families are struggling  with their finances and the different coping strategies they adopt. This article highlights some of […]

Tips for drawing up a realistic budget

Dave Ramsey quote about budgetting

In Debt Camel’s “one a month” debt-busting resolutions, April’s task is to draw up a realistic budget. Without a good budget it’s really hard to decide how to tackle your debts or to keep on top of them as you try to implement your chosen plan. This article looks at what goes into your budget […]

What to do if you get a Claim Form

HM Court Service logo

If you receive a Claim Form from a County Court through the post you need to respond rapidly. Ignoring court papers is a bad idea, even if you can’t possibly pay the money. If you agree you owe the money you will get a County Court Judgment (CCJ) but if you complete the Claim Form […]

DFD comments on proposed IVA variations

extract from IVA changes

DFD are asking many of their IVA clients to agree to a variation in their IVA terms and to sign a Deed of Arrangement. I commented on this in a post on 7th March, raising various questions that I felt clients should get clarified before they decide whether to agree to the proposed variation. I […]

Inheriting money when bankrupt

a golden nest egg

A reader has asked if my recent article on redundancy payments and bankruptcy also applies to inheriting money when you are bankrupt. The answer is “Yes”, but there are a few extra points to consider. The date of death is the key date You become entitled to an inheritance as soon as the person has […]

Very low mortgage rates – a good time to pay off debt

recent base rates

If you have a lot of credit card debt or large loans, your mortgage probably isn’t top of your list of debts to worry about. But two pieces of news are warnings that today’s ultra-low mortgage rates won’t continue forever and that you need to take account of this. Treasury Select Committee inquiry into 2014 […]

Will the OR take my redundancy money?

Road marking saying "new career ahead"

A reader has asked: “I have been offered redundancy. I would like to retrain for a more interesting job, but I still have nearly a year of IPA payments to make, so will the Official Receiver take all my redundancy pay?” It depends on your discharge date The answer to the question depends on whether […]

FCA says many DMPs unsuitable and expensive

Plan A crossed out

Financial Conduct Authority research has found that more than 600,000 Debt Management Plans  are started each year and fees for debt management plans are estimated to be £25 million a year. Christopher Woolard, the FCA’s director of policy, risk and research says “It’s frankly unacceptable that … people who are struggling to make ends meet are being talked into […]

Bankruptcy fees remain the same – but too high!

Padlock preventing a door opening

The Insolvency Service has announced an increase in various bankruptcy fees, but the fees for an individual going bankrupt have not been changed. The Insolvency Service’s fee is £525, plus an additional £175 Court Fee which may be waived for people on a low income. Can people with large debts afford the current fees? Business […]

Threats of court and bailiffs – are debt collectors bluffing?

Judge

If you have missed some payments on your debts, you may be worried that you are going to have to go to court.  Perhaps you have received scary letters from a debt collector demanding payments. These may threaten defaults, county court judgments and bailiffs taking your possessions. You need to know the facts, to tell […]

Should you accept DFD’s proposed IVA variation?

extract from IVA changes

A Debt Camel reader has sent me copies of the documentation that Debt Free Direct (DFD) are asking him to sign to change the terms of his IVA. It includes a Deed of Assignment, which relates to PPI reclaims, and a Variation in IVA conditions to adopt the 2014 Protocol. Fairpoint, DFD’s parent company, have […]

Keep a spending diary – March’s resolution

Notes book with spending details

Keeping a spending diary is the third of Debt Camel‘s 2014 resolutions. If you feel your money just vanishes or you are worried your budget isn’t realistic, a spending diary will give you the facts you need to take control. Without knowing what you actually spend, all too often plans to cut back are just […]

My IVA is nearly finished – agree to “small change”?

Two readers have been asked by their IVA company to agree to a change in their IVA terms to incorporate the new 2014 IVA Protocol. They are both close to the end of their IVAs and want to know if they should agree. Speed up IVA completion certificates? Their IVA company, DFD in both cases, […]

Can I go bankrupt?

Advert asking if you qualify for bankruptcy

“Can I go bankrupt?”  is a very common question. People worry that the judge will refuse their bankruptcy petition because their debts aren’t large enough or they should repay the money or that they don’t meet the legal criteria. Some firms who refer people for IVAs or fee-charging DMPs prey on these sorts of worries, […]