Debt questions from around the world, helping each other by giving and receiving advice on UK based debt.

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By meggy
#167270 Firstly, let me just say, I wish this board had existed 7 years ago!!!

So, my story is quite a long winded one, here goes;

I accrued debts of around £18,000 whilst at University, (student loans, graduate loan, overdrafts and a couple of credit cards). Also someone stole my details and ran up a nice big bill for a catalogue, which was very kind of them.

When I graduated I just couldn't find a decent job (the full graduate loan was approved with gross earnings of £8,100!!!) , and I struggled with the payments. I think I managed around 4 or 5 before getting into seriously deep water and started "Robbing Peter to pay Paul). I moved back to my Father's house (which mean't moving towns and having to look for another job). It was almost imposible to find work, I was either overqualified for some jobs and underqualified/not enough experience for others. I ended up stuffing envelopes for £3.00 per hour.

I kind of flipped!!! I just packed up my stuff and moved to another country (leaving my family to field calls from the various institutions demanding their money back). I just left it all. I did originally go with the intention of working to keep up my payments and returning in a few months to decide what I wanted to do. Fate waved her magic wand and I had a car crash (writing off the car I had paid for with my Graduate loan) , I just went into a mad panic and decided that there was no going back. A few years later, I had a serious life-threatening illness and from then on I thought life is too short to be worrying about this. Now I'm better though, I've started thinking about tying up loose ends

I met my husband and was honest from the beginning about the situation, his attitude was that what happened in the UK has no bearing on the country we live in. I have been back to the UK several times, but every now and then my Father still gets the odd phone call, or letter. My family has forgiven me for the crap I have put them through, but I can't forgive myself. I've read that you can apply for bankruptcy whilst living abroad as long as the petitioner is present when filing. Would I be able to do this ? It has been nearly 7 years since I made any payments. I can't even remember properly what I owe and to whom. If I become bankrupt, will my married name be published or my maiden name (I would rather it was the married one because it would cause less embarrassment for my family).

We would like the option to come back to the UK to work, work is scarce here and low paid with little opportunity. I have been unemployed / housewife for the last 4 years so my earnings are zilch, and my Husbands earnings are just enough for us to get by.

Psychologically I had a lot going on at the time I ran off, I was in a very bad place (due to other factors as well as financial) , I was drinking far too much and looking back, I think I was suffering from some sort of breakdown or depression. I thank God I found my husband. I'm deeply ashamed of what I have down, but reading other people's experiences I realize that I'm not alone.

Thank you in advance for any help
By nomoneybigdebts
#167290 Hi Meggy,

sorry I can't help you with your specific question. All I know is that yes, you can still declare yourself bankrupt even after 7 years. The only thing I'm not sure about is wether you can do it back in UK or wether you have to do it in the country you are living in now. There is something I have read that if you have been away for more than 3 years you have to do it in the country you are living in now. Bear in mind that this is purely a guess and I could be totally wrong. I'm sure someone who knows about these things will be along shortly to answer you (it's the weekend and usually quiet in here).

As for running away from your debts, you know yourself it wasn't right but hey we have all thought about it I'm sure. Even if they don't catch up with you, it's having to live with yourself that's the worst part and you are willing to do the right thing now that's the main thing.

If I become bankrupt, will my married name be published or my maiden name (I would rather it was the married one because it would cause less embarrassment for my family).

To my knowledge, when your bankruptcy is published both your old address and your maiden name and also your new address and married name will be published, but how many people do you know who read these bits in the paper and even if someone does they are unlikely to say anything to you or your parents. Sorry the answer is not exactly what you would have liked to hear, but keep your chin up I'm sure you will be able to deal with it.

Good Luck with doing the right thing!
By nomoneybigdebts
#167311 Hi again,

sorry, forgot to mention this: first of all you will need some expert advice ie. from CAB or CCCS.

How you would do this from abroad I don't know :? , but hopefully there are some debt advice people in the country you're living in.

All the best
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By meggy
#167313 Unfortunately no, but I will make an appointment to see the CAB when I am in the UK next month! I would like to get it sorted out once and for all, but I'm worried that it's too late. I've spoken to various professionals about this in the past, but they've always said not to bother. The thing is, I own nothing and apart from my dead car, never have!!! I have not a penny to my name!!

I started to get into debt at 18, basically as soon as I went to uni and always worked in my holidays. I thought I'd get a great job at the end of it and would be able to pay everything back. I've lived with debt worry for nearly 14yrs and just don't want it to be in my life anymore. Although my life is in a different country, I would like to be able to come back to the UK without panicking about it. At the time of the great escape, I just couldn't see a way out, I was also very young and I think if I had been older and wiser, I might have dealt with things differently.

Thanks for your answer
By gunner1234
#168591 My situation is almost identical to yours!!!

can I ask - when you went back did you have any problems at the airport?? or was your passport in your now maried name??

I have just been granted my green card and am going back for the first time in 4 yrs but am scared stiff that I will have trouble at the airport when I arrive??
By nomoneybigdebts
#168614 Hi gunner1234

You will have no trouble at the airport. You can not be arrested for having debt. Debt is a civil matter for the civil courts, not a criminal offence so the airport authorities will have no interest in you whatsoever.

Except the usual: Do you have anything to declare?

All the best nmbd
By gunner1234
#168616 Thank you for responding - I can now stop worrying a little!!! :)