Questions On Debt Management Plans (Or DMPs)

Got debt management questions? At PayPlan we’re happy to answer all your queries.

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About your DMP

Is a Debt Management Plan (DMP) suitable for me?

Debt Management Plan (also known as a DMP) is a debt solution for anyone who has unsecured debts that they can’t afford to repay.

If you owe money to more than one creditor and you have a surplus income each month (that is, money left over after you have paid all of your living costs & household bills from your income) then a DMP could be a great debt solution for you.

With a DMP, you pay all of your unsecured debts back, but at a more affordable rate.

Advantages of a Payplan Debt Management Plan

  • You pay one monthly payment to PayPlan who distribute all of your DMP payment on a pro-rata basis to your creditors.
  • Unlike most other debt management companies, PayPlan don’t charge you any fees for a Debt Management Plan.
  • Once you enter a DMP, your creditors sometimes agree to freeze your interest and charges for the term of the DMP, so the debt doesn’t increase any further. There is no guarantee this will be the case however as a DMP is an informal debt solution.
  • With a DMP you only pay what you can afford, based on your incomings and outgoings.
  • You will no longer need to negotiate with your creditors alone and, whenever required, PayPlan will advise and assist you with communication you receive from your creditors.
  • With PayPlan you can track your Debt Management Plan’s monthly payments online using our exclusive free PayPlanPlus website.
  • Whilst creditors may still write and call you, we at PayPlan encourage them to contact us instead, and this can often reduce the number of calls and letters you receive (if you get any communication while in a PayPlan Debt Management Plan, just contact your case officer who will advise you what to do)

Disadvantages of a Debt Management Plan (DMP)

  • DMP isn’t legally binding, so creditors could in theory proceed with court action (although PayPlan will assist you with this should it ever occur during your Debt Management Plan).
  • If you are only making a small monthly payment and have a high level of debt, it could take several years to clear your debt with a DMP. (If this is the case PayPlan will talk you through what other options are available and recommend a debt solution that could help you clear your debts sooner.)
  • DMP will also have an adverse effect on your credit rating for a prolonged period of time. A DMP involves reduced payments to your creditors and although you are still making payments this will be noted on your credit file. Your credit file will be affected for six years after you have finished making your last DMP payment – your credit could be affected for a considerable amount of time compared to other debt solutions.

Is a Debt Management Plan a loan?

No, a debt management plan is a way for you to repay your debts at an affordable rate.

A debt management company such as PayPlan doesn’t buy the debt from your original creditors, nor do they give you money to cover your existing debts.

A PayPlan DMP helps you to manage your debts by offering a reduced payment to each of your creditors, and we also request they freeze interest and charges to help you get debt-free quicker.

How long will my Debt Management Plan (DMP) last?

The length of your Debt Management Plan depends on your individual situation. It depends on your level of debt and how much you can afford to repay each month.

If creditors do freeze interest and charges with creditors, the length of your Debt Management Plan can be dramatically reduced.

For example: If you owe £25,000 and you can afford to pay £250 per calendar month the DMP will last for just over 8 years (100 months). This applies only if the payments are maintained each month and the creditors freeze interest for the duration of the plan. (Don’t forget, your DMP can be completed sooner if your circumstances improve and your payments can be increased. Likewise if you circumstances worsen the duration of your DMP will be extended.)

About your DMP payments

How much does it cost to set up a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

Nothing if you choose PayPlan, it’s completely free.

As you may know there are many debt management companies that charge by either requiring a start up fee or a monthly management fee, which can be anything from 15% – 17% of the monthly payment.

Many creditors recognise our success at arranging debt repayment solutions that our clients can afford to repay, and agree to a small donation to us for providing this service to you.

This is what allows us to offer completely free Debt Management Plans. So whatever you can afford to pay each month goes directly to your creditors to reduce your level of debt even quicker.

For example if you can afford to repay £250p/m all of that money will be distributed to your creditors pro rata, PayPlan takes no fees from your payment and the full £250 per month will go towards paying your creditors off.

Please think very carefully before signing up with a fee-charging company, because PayPlan can offer this service for free!

How much will each creditor get?

This depends on two things; your surplus income (i.e. the money you have left over every month after paying all your living expenses), and how much you owe each creditor.

For example:

If you had three Creditors, as below:

Creditor

Amount (% of total debt)

Total

£8,474

Credit Card

£1,525.32 (18%)

Store Card

£1,779.54 (21%)

Bank Loan

£5,169.14 (61%)



If your surplus income = £153 per month, then the pro-rata payments to each creditor will be:

Creditor

Amount (% of total debt)

Total

£153/month

Credit Card

£27.54/month (18%)

Store Card

£32.13/month (21%)

Bank Loan

£93.33/month (61%)



We will pay the agreed amount each month to each of your creditors, on your behalf, with no fees taken out.

How do I make my Debt Management Plan (DMP) payments?

During the term of your Debt Management Plan you’ll pay monthly using one of two methods:

  • Standing Order 
  • Direct Debit (this is the easiest and preferred method)

Can I stop my Debt Management Plan (DMP) when I like?

A Debt Management Plan is an informal arrangement between you and your creditors, so you are free to stop the Debt Management Plan at any time, but we ask that you provide as much notice as possible so we can inform all of your creditors.

If you are experiencing further financial problems and cannot afford the current DMP payments to PayPlan, please let us know because we may be able to restructure the Debt Management Plan for you or we can reassess your circumstances and see if another solution might be available to you.

Please note: Bear in mind that once the DMP is cancelled, creditors may well resume interest and charges.

About your creditors

Who informs my creditors of the Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

One of the benefits of a DMP through PayPlan is that we will contact your creditors, explain your situation, show them your income and expenditure and make an offer of payment to them. 

Will my creditors agree to my Debt Management Plan (DMP) payments?

Creditors don’t actually have to agree to the Debt Management Plan payments in order for you to send them the money. You can only offer what you can afford and no more; the creditors know this but may use commonly-used techniques to try and get you to increase your payment. Over the last 20 years we have communicated with various creditors on behalf of our clients and we’ve had a great record in getting interest rates frozen.

Is my credit rating affected if I enter into a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

DMP in itself will not show on your credit file, however, if you have recently been experiencing financial difficulty (missed repayments) then your credit rating is likely to have been affected already by this.

To explain this further; whenever the full contractual payment isn’t made, whether this is through a DMP or not and even if the payment is just a few pounds short, it will still affect your credit rating because, if your Debt Management Plan repayment is less than the required repayment as originally agreed, then you are not complying with the original credit agreement you made.

Will I still receive calls and letters during the term of the Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

Unfortunately, due to a Debt Management Plan being an informal arrangement, your creditors are still entitled to contact you directly, so PayPlan cannot guarantee that all letters and phone calls will stop immediately, but we can hope to reduce communication to a minimum. If you do receive any correspondence from your creditors that concerns you while you’re in a PayPlan DMP, simply contact us and we will be more than happy to provide you with further information and will, if necessary, speak to your creditors on your behalf. We will speak to all your unsecured creditors whenever we need to. This is one of the major benefits of being a PayPlan client.

How will I know my creditors are being paid during my Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

PayPlan have an exclusive website for tracking your Debt Management Plan payments called PayPlanPlus. This website is exclusive and free to all our clients, and allows you to view the DMP payments we have received from you. You will also be able to track individual payments to each of your creditors and confirm exact dates. Once you enter into a PayPlan DMP arrangement you will be given your own unique login details so you are able to track your DMP payments.

Creditors may occasionally contact you to say that they haven’t received a payment from PayPlan, which is often untrue; they may be asking you for more money directly, or there may even be a misunderstanding between departments. If you ever suspect your creditors aren’t being paid or that a mistake has been made during the term of your Debt Management Plan, then you should get in touch us on 0800 280 2816 or by requesting a callback.

About legal issues

Can my creditors still issue me with a County Court Judgment (CCJ)?

A Debt Management Plan isn’t legally binding so creditors could feasibly still take action against you. But as PayPlan have many years’ experience in arranging and managing DMPs, and as we have a very good and well established relationship with creditors, this is less likely to happen if you keep to your Debt Management Plan.

If any of your creditors were to apply to the court for a CCJ, then of course PayPlan would continue to support you.

Will I get a Default Notice?

If you alter or adjust your creditor payments, whether that is by negotiating reduced payments yourself or by entering into a debt management plan, your creditors can issue a default notice. Although you are still making monthly repayments, the payment is likely to be less than you originally agreed to pay when you entered the original credit agreement. A default notice can be issued at any point during your arrangement even if you are maintaining the terms of your renewed agreement.

If you receive a default notice, it doesn’t automatically mean the creditor is going to take legal action. The default will appear on your credit file for 6 years from the date it was issued.

If you have any doubts or queries about default notices, then please contact us and we’ll explain everything in detail.

Can I enter into a Debt Management Plan (DMP) if I already have a CCJ?

CCJs don’t prevent you from entering into a Debt Management Plan. PayPlan will help you make the payments to creditors who have issued you with a CCJ. You will be required to provide details of your CCJ during the financial assessment we undertake as a normal part of your Debt Management Plan, and CCJ payments will be given priority when PayPlan distribute your payments monthly.

Other popular questions people ask

What support do I get during my Debt Management plan (DMP)?

At PayPlan we pride ourselves on giving excellent support to all our clients. Throughout your PayPlan Debt Management Plan arrangement we will continue to support you so if you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to get in touch. If your financial situation changes, call us and we will go through your circumstances and, see what options are available. 

Our website will also give you continuous support, with hundreds of pages of financial knowledge, money saving tips, up to date relevant news and PayPlanPlus.

Can I continue to use credit during my Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

As responsible debt advisers, we ask clients not to obtain further credit whilst in a Debt Management Plan. It can be considered fraudulent to take out credit that you know can’t be repaid. The Debt Management Plan that you discuss with PayPlan will ensure you have enough money to live on, so you shouldn’t need to take out any more credit during your DMP. There are of course exceptions; for example you might have a company credit card where you are not liable for the repayments, but you should still declare these to avoid any problems.

Will interest and charges be frozen during my Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

No debt management company (even PayPlan) can guarantee that creditors will freeze interest and charges during your Debt Management Plan (DMP), and you should be wary of those who say they can.

We feel your best chance of achieving such a freeze is by presenting a realistic income and expenditure report to your creditors, as we would on your behalf before you begin a DMP with PayPlan.

Creditors are likely to be more co-operative when they see that you are making every effort to clear your outstanding debts with a reputable company like PayPlan.

What happens to my secured debt during a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

Your secured debts (i.e. mortgage and car hire purchase) can’t be included in a Debt Management Plan; only unsecured debts can be included in a DMP. If you are unable to make the contractual payments to your secured debts you are at risk of losing the item to which the loan is secured on (e.g. the house if you default on the mortgage or the car if you default on the HP agreement).

PayPlan will ensure you include your secured debt repayments in your income and expenditure budget right from the start. This should mean you never get into arrears with your secured debts, and PayPlan strive to help you budget sensibly when you are in a DMP. This site offers further information on Mortgage ArrearsCar Repossession, and House Repossession.

Is my home at risk if I enter into a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

No, a Debt Management Plan is an alternative to bankruptcy and isn’t legally binding so you won’t lose your home if you continue to make the agreed payments into your DMP.

It is always our priority at PayPlan to ensure that your property is not at risk and allowances will be made within your income and expenditure to keep up the payments on any mortgages or loans secured on your property. Providing you do this then there is no reason why your property should be at risk.

Which debts are included in a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

DMP will only help you make reduced payments to your unsecured creditors, therefore the debts that can be included are:

  • Personal loans (loans taken to purchase cars are fine but Hire Purchase (HP) agreements cannot be included as they are secured against the item being purchased)
  • Credit cards
  • Store cards
  • Catalogues
  • Overdrafts

Secured debts can’t be included in DMPs because any payments on secured debts that aren’t met in full, can lead to the goods being repossessed. This website provides details on house repossession and car repossession, which are all consequences of not maintaining mortgage or hire purchase payments.

Will I have to tell my partner about the Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

We offer an absolutely confidential service from start to finish, so PayPlan will never force you to tell your partner about your debt situation, although support is available if you wish to tell them. Whenever we contact a client we take great care to avoid divulging the nature of our call to anyone but the client.

Will I have to live on a tight budget during my Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

To enter into and maintain a successful Debt Management Plan you will need to live within a budget, however this is discussed with you openly. PayPlan are required to submit your income and expenditure details to your creditors.

Remember that when we’re negotiating your DMP, it is in your interest if we can show your creditors you are prepared to make some sacrifices to help repay your debts.

Why do I have to change my bank account?

If you have a current account with a company you owe money to, you will be required to open a new bank account. This is not only the case with a DMP but you should change your bank account if you are going to make reduced payments to a company that you also bank with. Banks have the “Right to Offset” so any money in your current account could be used to pay another debt with the bank. We wouldn’t account for that in your Debt Management Plan so it would make sense for you to switch to a new current account.

More Information on Debt Management

Are you ready to let us help with your debts?

A PayPlan Debt Management Plan is free of charge, and so is our debt advice.

If you think you’re ready for a practical debt solution that will help you clear your debts, call us now on 0800 280 2816 and we’ll be more than happy to give you great advice that is tailored to your circumstances and needs.

Naturally our advisers sometimes get very busy taking calls, so if you can’t get through at first please do try calling again, or simply send us a Debt Help Request so we can call you back.