Marc Gander - The Consumer Survival Handbook


A 220 page introduction to all things consumer related by our own BankFodder.

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Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide


An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

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  1. #1

    Default In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Hi

    Me and my husband are in a bit of a pickle. I'm really really embarresed to admit this but i need to stop burying my head in the sandicon and i need some advise on where to turn. Over the last few years me and my husband have spiralled into bad debt. Its not that we dont want to pay off our debts its just there never seems to be enough money to go around. It started where we would miss a payment on one thing to pay another and then the next month we would miss another couple of payments to pay the bill we missed the month before.
    Then my husband was made redundant it got to the point were we couldn't make any payments at all. We have two small children which take up more money than we earn between us. People (my mum) keep trying to give us advice but it doesn't help all the say i sbudget better etc etc. Admittedly we are useless with money and our debts are now at about £17 - 18000. Its getting to the point where i wont answer my phone I dont want to face the post and at times i just dont want to carry on. I never new having fun in my teens would leave me in this much of a mess.
    We did go to the citezens advice beureu who advised us to make tokan payments of a pound a month. for various creditors half of them declined our offer we payed like we should of done for the first few months then all contact stopped.
    So now where back at square one, If we do an IVA we are going to struggle to make ends meet but maybe it will be worth it. and someone suggested bankruptcyicon, We rent our home and dont have a car and our possesions probably wouldn't add up to much. We have looked at the consequences at both but we dont know anyone thats been through either and dont know what the effects are later on.

    I'm getting to the point were i've just had enough. One day i would like a mortgageicon but would never have another loan or credit card or anything everagain. Its made the last 3 years hell.


    Anyone got any advice. I just feel so stupid and niave for getting into this mess and at the moment i just cant see an end to it. Has anyone got any advice??

    Similar Threads:

  2. #2

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Hi there,

    First things first, you've taken a big step to recognising that there is a problem and you are certainly doing the right thing by looking at your options at this stage.

    With this in mind I think you would benefit from some professional advice to see what kind of options you have at this stage. I work as a Debt Counsellor for the debt advice charity consumer crediticon Counselling Service (CCCS). Obviously it is difficult for me to give you in depth advice via this forum. We do however have an online electronic facility called Debt Remedy where you can complete a financial statement and be provided with advice on the best way to deal with your situation. If you go to our website www.cccs.co.uk and click on Debt Remedy you can access our virtual counselling service.

    CCCS is a registered charity, and there is no charge whatsoever for any of the services we provide to our clients. We take great pride in offering first class help and advice, but we only offer this where we have been able to fully explore and understand your circumstances with you. We want to help you understand these choices and their possible implications but not make them for you.

    Regards, CCCS

    We aim to advise you on practical ways to deal with your finances and to understand priority & non-priority debts. We can also help you to cope with these in a realistic and sustainable way and help you understand the likely actions of your creditors including any legal action during this process.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Thank you so much! I am at work at the moment but will go to my parents tonight and make a start. Worried because we havent heard from some of the people who we owe money too for an awful long time so I dont know what situation we are in with them. Will i need a list of all the people and the amounts i owe when i fill in the online forms tonight?Plus do me and my husband need to do this seperatley or can we do it as a couple?


  4. #4

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    First of all, you should understand that the feelings you describe are both understandable and normal. I could probably add a few more to the list: hopelessness, helplessness and perhaps some anger, too. They're all part of a normal emotional response to the situation you are in.

    From what you say, it's clear that you are a 'can't pay' rather than a 'won't pay'; there's no need to feel embarrassed about it. There's no shame in asking for help, and in doing so you've probably already jumped the hardest hurdle.

    What you need to do now is take back control, and you may need some help with this. Get in touch with one of the free debt advice services such as consumer crediticon Counselling Services or Payplan. If you go to the Citizen's Advice Bureau make sure you speak to one of their specialist Debt Advisors. Avoid fee-paying debt management companies like the plague.

    CCCS and PP will both go through an income and expenditure form with you, and work out what you can realistically afford to repay your creditors, even if it's a tiny amount. They will then negotiate with the creditors on your behalf (creditors and debt collectorsicon are obliged to deal with them), and help with any problems on the way. This is known as Debt Management Plan (DMP). Both organisations are very busy, so it may take a while to start things off. In the meantime, you can write to your creditors telling them that you are taking advice, and making a token payment.

    DMPs aren't legally binding, so a determined creditor could still go to court, for example, but it's unlikely, since the court will look favourably upon your efforts to resolve matters, and in any case won't order you to pay more than you can afford.

    IVAs are only suitable for a very few people. bankruptcyicon is also sometimes an option, but you would need to find the court fees!

    Of course, all of this supposes that your creditors have all the proper paperwork, and haven't added unlawful charges and so - CAGicon can help with this.

    Remember, there are lots of people her on CAGicon who can answer questions and support you. Things may seem dark at the moment, but they will improve, and you needn't face them alone.

    Edited to add that I am clearly a slower typist than Matthew, but great minds etc...


  5. #5

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    If you've got up to date figures of the creditors you owe it will ensure that the advise is best based on your circumstances. You always have the ability to change any information at a later date if needs be. Obviously if you have a couple of creditors which you've not spoke to for a while you can just put in the last amount you were aware of owing.

    It's completly up to you whether you would prefer to complete as an individual or as a couple, and it's a really easy system to use. If you have any problems whilst doing it there is a number you can call and one of our counsellors can answer any of your questions.

    Hope this helps, any more questions feel free to ask

    Regards, CCCS

    We aim to advise you on practical ways to deal with your finances and to understand priority & non-priority debts. We can also help you to cope with these in a realistic and sustainable way and help you understand the likely actions of your creditors including any legal action during this process.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by CCCS_Matthew View Post
    Hi there,

    First things first, you've taken a big step to recognising that there is a problem and you are certainly doing the right thing by looking at your options at this stage.

    With this in mind I think you would benefit from some professional advice to see what kind of options you have at this stage. I work as a Debt Counsellor for the debt advice charity consumer crediticon Counselling Service (CCCS). Obviously it is difficult for me to give you in depth advice via this forum. We do however have an online electronic facility called Debt Remedy where you can complete a financial statement and be provided with advice on the best way to deal with your situation. If you go to our website www.cccs.co.uk and click on Debt Remedy you can access our virtual counselling service.

    CCCS is a registered charity, and there is no charge whatsoever for any of the services we provide to our clients. We take great pride in offering first class help and advice, but we only offer this where we have been able to fully explore and understand your circumstances with you. We want to help you understand these choices and their possible implications but not make them for you.

    Regards, CCCS
    At last! The CCCS are here! Bravo & welcome



    If my post was helpful don't forget to click the star!

    Advice is offered freely, without liability and without prejudice.
    If in any doubt professional legal advice should be sought.

    I do not profess to be in any way legally trained, I am a big
    oily truck driver and all I know has been learned within the
    Consumer Action Group.

    FAQ's
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...se-read-these/

    Trying to stop smoking?
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...-smoking-here/

    A dummies guide to the forums
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...i-dummies.html

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  7. #7

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Are any of these debts with debt collectionicon Agencies ?


  8. #8

    Smile Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Hi Hannahsmygirl. I have only been part of this site for a couple of months, but it has helped so much. Nearly everyone you come across will have a similiar story and have gone through or are still going through all the emotions you have described.

    Don't be ashamed, we all make mistakes, the important thing is that we learn from them. Keep updating your post and take time to read the other threads - it's amazing how much you learn. Using this site will make you feel supported and even empowered, as you realise no matter how much debt you have, you still have rights.

    Best wishes


  9. #9

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    I couldn't agree more hopeful!!!!!


  10. #10

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    HI

    Well feeling a little better now i havetalked to someone. Also filled in the debt help form and got my reference and phone number so i can talk to someone tomorrow. Still feeling a little embarresed and worried about speaking to someone. Its hard admiting I have made a mess of things. Looks like we may be heading the right direction though!!! Hopefull this is the start of better things. I can't believe i have buried my head in the sandicon for so long. I hate the fact that our money problems are putting astrain on our marriageicon and making life so miserable. Its nice to have it out in the open thoughand its nice to talk to people who aren't Judging and have been werewe are now!

    Thanks xxx


  11. #11

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Well done hannahsmygirl, I am sure after you have spent a couple of times reading on this website that you will realise it can happen to any one of us so dont beat yourself up about it, that will only serve to put more strain on your family life. Today is the first day..... and all that!
    Pat yourself on the back for taking the first step, and I can assure you that this time next week you will be feeling much better!!


  12. #12

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by hannahsmygirl View Post
    HI

    Well feeling a little better now i havetalked to someone. Also filled in the debt help form and got my reference and phone number so i can talk to someone tomorrow. Still feeling a little embarresed and worried about speaking to someone. Its hard admiting I have made a mess of things. Looks like we may be heading the right direction though!!! Hopefull this is the start of better things. I can't believe i have buried my head in the sandicon for so long. I hate the fact that our money problems are putting astrain on our marriageicon and making life so miserable. Its nice to have it out in the open thoughand its nice to talk to people who aren't Judging and have been werewe are now!

    Thanks xxx
    Also, when (if) you do have to speak to a creditor you can quote them your CCCS reference number, it does make it a little easier, though it's best generally to insist on communication in writing only.

    Good luck, I really can't praise the CCCS any more than I regularly do.

    Don't forget to post again if there's any help or advise you need, nobody bites here!

    Best wishes, Dave.

    If my post was helpful don't forget to click the star!

    Advice is offered freely, without liability and without prejudice.
    If in any doubt professional legal advice should be sought.

    I do not profess to be in any way legally trained, I am a big
    oily truck driver and all I know has been learned within the
    Consumer Action Group.

    FAQ's
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...se-read-these/

    Trying to stop smoking?
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...-smoking-here/

    A dummies guide to the forums
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...i-dummies.html

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    http://www.bornfree.org.uk
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  13. #13

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Well I have spoken to cccs and its official we are skint!!!! Ok now i need some more advice. They say we arepaying out 948pounds a month more than we have coming in. This doesn't include most of our debts. Inever realised things were this bad!!! Its difficult to see it all written down. Only problem isthey have said come back to us when you have sorted out our priorty debts. This is all well and good but even when they are all payed we still have no money to pay what we owe. So whats the next step??? Does this mean bankruptcyicon?I have taken a small look into bankruptcyicon and to me it seems like "the end" whats life like after bankruptcy now i feel more lost than ever? CCCS were great though most of thier advise was good sort of feel a little lost though now!!!


  14. #14

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Hi there,

    The reason we suggest we suggest you need to look at sorting priority debts is because they are likely to have the biggest affect on your life. Once your in a situation where you have enough money to cover your living costs, then we can certainly look at your long term options with the creditors. bankruptcyicon could be one of the options at a later date but is not possible until you have enough money to cover living costs as a judge would consider yourself to be in a situation where you need credit to survive and would advise you to be able to cover these before going bankrupticon

    I cannot give you specific advise regarding your appointment as is it would be breaking Data Protection Act, but you can always call us as many times as needed to ask questions or discuss the advice.

    Any other non-specific questions however and I will be more than happy to answer

    Take Care
    CCCS

    We aim to advise you on practical ways to deal with your finances and to understand priority & non-priority debts. We can also help you to cope with these in a realistic and sustainable way and help you understand the likely actions of your creditors including any legal action during this process.
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  15. #15

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Hi Matthew.

    Your a star for helping. We are getting there with our priorty debts it has taken a while. we have managed to clear over a thousan on council taxbills in thelast 6 months. To be fair i dont know how things have got sobad or even howwe get through the month. But we haven't actuall used any credit in the last year we dont have an overdraft well on any bank accounts we are using. We dont use our credit cards. I guess we just spend less on shopping clothes etc than we used to!


  16. #16

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Hi Hannah,
    I know exactly where you're coming from it feels so hopeless that sometimes you don't want to go on. I can't even be bothered working out how much I allegedly owe! I think it's well over £20K although several of that are illegal charges added by the companies - one debt inflated from £2500 to over £4000 by charges etc. even whilst in dispute!

    Hang on in there. As rightly stated - priority debts are known as that for a reason, they are your priority and are usually connected with living costs - home, utilities etc.

    Everything else is not as important.

    Obviously without knowing the extent of your circumstances I can't give very specific advice but sort out the priority debts, try to make arrangements or do whatever you can to stabilise the situation with them.

    Then look at secondary debts - list them and see what you think. Remember they can't put you in jail for civil debts, they can't hurt you no matter how pathetic their letters are - you should see some of the rubbish I've been sent in the past. If you and your husband are strong you will get through this. Remember what is important is that you are together and you fight it together.

    Anyway, secondary debts. First step is look at some of the other posts - re: credit cards, loans etc and cca requests.

    If you have debts of this type, send one of the CCA Requesticon letters to them and make them sweat for a change. In short if they don't have an enforceable agreement with you then they can sing for the money. If you do this post a thread on here so that people can help you because it's not always easy / straightforward.

    I personally intend fighting every last one of mine to the bitter end because from the first point they have all acted in the most disrespectful ways both to me and the law and therefore they deserve no quarter.

    My problems also started in a similar way to yours, miss one payment and the charges affected the next months payments, which in turn affected other payments because our budgets were so tight. Requests for help were met with complete disdain, in fact it seemed to spur some of them on to greater acts of depravity - one even increased their interest rate as well as adding charges to my account.

    Since I sent out the cca requests most have become a little bit more discussive apart from one who is trying to bluff it out (there's always one).

    Anyway, I wish you well and if you keep viewing these boards you'll see all my debts appearing over the next few weeks and progress against them. You are not alone and we will all try to help. My motto is 'free of debt by christmas'


  17. #17

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by babble View Post
    *illegal charges*
    Just to correct you on what may seem awfully picky, but for the benefit of everyone...

    The charges are unlawful, not illegal.

    If my post was helpful don't forget to click the star!

    Advice is offered freely, without liability and without prejudice.
    If in any doubt professional legal advice should be sought.

    I do not profess to be in any way legally trained, I am a big
    oily truck driver and all I know has been learned within the
    Consumer Action Group.

    FAQ's
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...se-read-these/

    Trying to stop smoking?
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...-smoking-here/

    A dummies guide to the forums
    http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...i-dummies.html

    --
    KEEP WILDLIFE IN THE WILD

    http://www.bornfree.org.uk
    BORN FREE FOUNDATION
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  18. #18

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Yes 1st thing you should do is send out the cca requests under section 78 for a true copy of your executed agreement to all creditcard, home shopping companies etc. It should provide you with some breathing space because if they default on you request after 12 working days you can legally stop paying them and they can;t add interest or enforce the debt. If you look at a lot of the threads on here i;e consumer crediticon Act Agreements you will see a lot of these companies don't comply within the time scales and quite often don't have enforceable agreements.

    Stay strong and don't forget you're among helpful friends here

    You may receive different advice to your query as people have different experiences and opinions. Please use your own judgement in deciding whose advice to take.

    If in doubt seek advice from a qualified insured professional. Any advice I have offered you is done so on an informal basis, without prejudice or liability.

    If you think I have been helpful PLEASE click the scales

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  19. #19

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Don,t despair Hannahsmygirl,
    I know exactly how you are feeling as do many others on this forum,but a problem shared is a problem halved.Since I joined this forum in 2006,the help and support I have received from these guys,is tremendous.Never be afraid to ask for help,even if YOU think it is unimportant,Ask!!!!!!

    Best of luck
    Maggie


  20. #20

    Default Re: In debt and not sure where to turn and cant take anymore!!!

    Good luck with this Hannah hope you get it allsorted out, make sure you and your family remain strong and you'll come through ok.


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