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An IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement) is an agreement whereby you pay your creditors a set amount each month that you can afford after your income and living costs. On completing your arrangement the remaining balance of the debt is written off.  It is most appropriate for those who have debts of more than £5,000 and cannot afford to meet repayments, are receiving missed payment charges and increasing debt due to added interest.

An IVA can help you to resolve your unsecured debt without having to petition for you own bankruptcy. All you need to have is a regular household income and live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland.  Your unsecured debts will be consolidated into one, more manageable monthly payment which can start from as low as £70 per month. This allows you to organise and take control of your finances by writing off the unaffordable debt and freezing interest.

The typical duration of an IVA is five years, though this can be longer or shorter depending on your own circumstances. In this time, you can start to make ends meet again and manage your money, knowing you are making a single affordable payment.

If you own your own home, we understand that continuing to live in your property is a priority and under the IVA you will not be expected to sell your home against your wishes. You will, be required to investigate the potential for a re-mortgage to realise some of any equity into your arrangement, however any release will be based on your disposable income so will not create any affordability issues going forward.

Any other assets which are not considered to be essential for general living may be expected to be realised to increase the amount of debt repaid to your creditors.

  • Creditors who vote against your proposal are still bound by it.
  • Creditors whose lending is unsecured cannot take any further action.
  • Interest is usually frozen as long as you keep up your payments.
  • Your insolvency practitioner will help you prepare your proposal, including agreeing the level of your household and personal spending based on guidelines acceptable to creditors.
  • Many insolvency practitioners will allow you to pay their fees for preparing your proposal monthly, as part of the IVA.
  • You make only a single payment each month or quarter. Your insolvency practitioner is responsible for administering and distributing your payments.
  • The terms of an IVA will usually enable you or your spouse or partner or a relative to make arrangements to buy your share of the net worth of your home or to make extra payments, rather than the home having to be sold. This may be done through a remortgage or a loan. (Net worth means its value after any debts secured on it have been paid).
  • On completion of the IVA, the balance of what you owe your creditors is written off.
  • You may be able to continue running any business you have.

  • Your IVA is entered on a public register.
  • The insolvency practitioner may require payment in advance for preparing your proposal and getting your creditors’ agreement.
  • If there is some equity (value) in your home after taking account of the mortgage(s) on it, you will probably have to pay for your share, usually in the fifth year of your IVA, by remortgaging the property. If you cannot get a remortgage, you may have to continue making monthly or quarterly payments from your income, for up to another year.
  • If your circumstances change, and your practitioner cannot get creditors to accept amended terms, the IVA is likely to fail. You will then still owe your creditors the full amount of what you owed them at the start, less whatever has been paid to them under your IVA.
  • If you fail to adhere to the terms or your IVA it may fail and creditors could charge any interest that had been frozen or you may be made declared bankrupt.
  • Student Loans and some other debts cannot be included in your IVA.

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