By Tim Corfield
Mike, a solicitor I’ve known for around 20 years called me a couple of months ago. He explained his daughter had recently told him that she had built up around £45,000 credit card and loan debt over a number of years. Mike was shocked. He’d not seen it coming. His daughter, Louise, had always had a good job within the pharmaceutical industry, since she’d graduated 10 years ago. Louise earned around £32,000 and lived at home with her mother, Jayne. Mike and Jayne separated a few years ago but still had a strong mutual interest in the wellbeing of their daughter and son.
Both Jayne and Mike had retired from full time work in the last few years but still worked part time. Mike had transferred the matrimonial property (which was mortgage free) to Jayne at the time of the separation which is where Jayne lived with Louise.
Mike told me that his former wife was taking steps to make Louise a joint owner of the property and raise £45,000 by way of mortgage to clear the credit cards. “The property is all Jayne really has for her retirement” he said “Would you meet with Louise and explain to her about IVA’s and even bankruptcy”.
A couple of weeks later I had a meeting with Louise and Jayne and explained how an IVA (individual voluntary arrangement) and bankruptcy worked and how these could apply. Louise and Jayne left the office saying they would talk over the various options with Mike. Once she had fully thought through the implications of the re-mortgage for her mother Louise called me and said she’d decided to proceed with the IVA. “It has to be the best option for all concerned. Mom’s at the wrong time of her life to be giving away a big chunk of her only asset and the discipline of an IVA will help me not get into this situation again”.
The creditors duly agreed to the IVA and Louise is now paying £400 per month, for 5 years in full settlement of her debts. Any debt that remains unpaid will be written off, after completion of the arrangement in 5 years.
Often, especially with personal debt, there can be different ways of dealing with a financial problem. At Griffin & King we’re pleased to give our input into a situation if it helps people understand the issues and options. Like we did with Louise and her parents.
Do you have any clients or contacts that are struggling to cope with personal debt – whether it is HMRC, business debt, bank loans or credit cards or a mix of debt? Please ask them to get in touch with me, Janet Peacock, Cheryl Gray or any of our team for a free, confidential chat or meeting – we will be able to help!