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Dealing with many debts

If you have many different debts, there are several ways, using the courts, that you can sort things out yourself.

Administration orders

If you have at least one High Court or County Court Judgment (CCJ) against you, and your total debts are no more than £5000, you can apply for an 'administration order'(AO).This allows the court to send payments to all your creditors.You make one monthly payment to the court and this is then split between all your creditors in a way the court decides.

  • Council Tax;
  • Gas, electricity, phone and water bills
  • Fines.
Once this happens, a creditor can't take any action against you, and they will stop adding interest to your debt. The administration order can include:

These creditors may object to being included on the administration order, but the court will decide whether or not to include them.

Individual voluntary arrangement (IVA)

An IVA is a legally-binding arrangement between you and your creditors that is drawn up by a qualified insolvency practitioner (usually an accountant). You must agree to pay money, as a lump sum, instalments, or both. In return, your creditors may:
  • write-off part of the debt; and
  • not take court action against you or make you bankrupt.

You have to pay all the costs and fees and also a large amount of the debt, so it is realistic only if you have a fair amount of spare money or things you can sell to pay your debts.

For a detailed guide to Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVA) click here

Speak to a GFS advisor on 0800 088 2147 and we’ll advise which debt solution would best suit your debt problems. Take the Debt Test now and find out which solution is best for your debt needs.


This releases you from your debts after one to five years. But your finances will be officially investigated, and you will have to make reasonable payments towards your debts for the first two or three years, if you can afford to do so. Bankruptcy is not an easy option and you should also get expert advice before applying to make yourself bankrupt. It may not be suitable for people:

  • with certain types of job (for example, if you work in finance, you are a solicitor, or self employed);
  • if you own (or are buying) your own home; or
  • if you have a lot of other assets.

And there are some types of debt you will still have to pay after bankruptcy:

  • magistrates'fines;
  • maintenance for a partner or children;
  • debts from fraud; and
  • some forms of student loans.

Finally, you must make a lump-sum payment (currently at least £345) to make yourself bankrupt (even if you are receiving benefits). This fee alone rules it out for many people.See cost of making yourself bankrupt for full details.

Expert help and advice when you need it most

Our team of specialist debt advisors can assess your financial situation and personal circumstances, and then recommend the best debt solution available to you. Simply call the team on 0800 088 2147
Alternatively take the online debt test and find your best solution. Find your best solution with the online debt test

Solutions to deal with personal debts:

Become stress free from as little as £100 pcm
With a Debt Management Plan you could simply pay one affordable monthly payment and no longer have to deal with your creditors..
See if you qualify  DMP eligibilty test
Write off up to 70% of your debt
If you qualify for an IVA you could:
Write off up to 70% of your debt
Freeze all interest & charges
Keep your house

See if you qualify  IVA eligibility test
Scottish Resident?- be debt free in 36 months
Be DEBT FREE in 36 months using Scotland's answer to the IVA.
See if you qualify  Trust Deed eligibility test
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  does not charge you any fees for our service, however the partners we work with help fund the service. Our partners charge fees and those vary depending on the partner and the debt solution. Customers should refer to our partners' websites for more information regarding their services.

We will pass your details on to one of our debt partners who will contact you and explain all the options available to you. They will then be able to help you set up a debt solution which is right for you.

Debt solutions should not be entered into lightly - they affect your credit rating. Failure to keep up with repayments can result in bankruptcy or legal action. Different debt solutions have different risks attached to them.

The lender is not obliged to accept less in settlement of the debt than they are entitled to; nor to freeze interest or charges. It could result in the total amount payable increasing, or the period over which it is to be repaid increasing. Debt solutions affect credit ratings.

The debt products and solutions offered by our partners depend on your criteria and circumstances, including how much you owe and how many creditors you owe money to. You need to speak to a debt advisor to obtain a full assessment.


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What is bankruptcy?
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Alternatives to bankruptcy
Bankruptcy petition
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Bankruptcy and assets
Bankruptcy and your home
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What is an IVA?
How does an IVA work
IVA vs bankruptcy
Benefits of an IVA
Do I qualify for an IVA?
Trust Deeds

What is an PTD?
How does a PTD work
PTD vs bankruptcy
Benefits of a PTD
Do I qualify for a PTD?
Debt Management

What is a DMP
DMP vs bankruptcy
Do I qualify for a DMP
Debt Advice

Dealing with debt
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