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Thursday, 17th March 2011
What is a Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS)?
In November 2004 the Scottish Government introduced new legislation aimed at dealing with unmanageable debt with its Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS).
The scheme provides for a flexible Debt Payment Program (DPP), which can be for any amount of money or for any reasonable period of time, enabling those consumers with debt issues to repay their debts in full, over a longer period of time without fear of legal action against them.
Who can qualify for a Debt Arrangement Scheme - DAS?
You can only apply if you live in Scotland and you have two or more creditors / lenders and be experiencing difficulty keeping up the contractual payments, i.e. the payments agreed at the time the loans/credit were taken out.
Who cannot apply for a Debt Arrangement Scheme?
You cannot apply if you are currently bankrupt, subject to a bankruptcy restriction order or paying debts under a conjoined arrestment order or if you have signed a Trust Deed.
Can creditors refuse the Debt Arrangement Scheme?
If all the creditors fail to accept or failed to respond to the DPP then the administrator can overrule and approve the program if they feel the proposal to be fair and reasonable. The only way the arrangement can be broken is if the debtor / borrower fails to make the agreed payments into the plan or breaches a condition of the DDP.
What if circumstances change whilst in a Debt Arrangement Scheme - DAS?
If your circumstances change, for example you get a new job and less income, then providing they feel any changes to be fair and reasonable the administrator can vary the programme.
Once the debt payment programme has been accepted and the agreed payments are being made into the plan then creditors will not be allowed to take further legal action (such as wage arrestment) to enforce the debt. All interest, charges and fees on existing debts will be frozen.
Under the DPP the individual will make one single monthly payment to the administrator who will in turn make payments to those lenders that feature in the plan.
What are the advantages of a Debt Arrangement Scheme - DAS?
What are the disadvantages of a Debt Arrangement Scheme - DAS?
How do I apply for a Debt Arrangement Scheme - DAS?
This has to done through an Approved Money Adviser who will complete a budget form covering the proposer’s income and reasonable expenditure to determine how much they could afford to pay into the plan. The Money Adviser then makes an application to place the individual on to the scheme. The application will then be considered by the DAS administrator.
How do I find a DAS Approved Money Adviser?
All DAS Approved Money Advisers in Scotland can be found on the Register of DAS Approved Money Advisers
Remember, many DAS Approved Money Advisers offer their services free of charge. However, you should check this out with your chosen Money Adviser before entering into any agreement.