Do you work in the horticulture industry? Have you been sold an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) or are you thinking about entering into one?
The Insolvency Service has recently issued a report on IVA’s, highlighting “significant concerns about how IVA firms operate”. This was closely followed by a report from the Financial Conduct Authority warning how poor debt advice can lead to people entering into inappropriate IVAs.
An IVA is a formal and legally binding agreement between a debtor and his/her creditors, arranged by an Insolvency Practitioner. It is approved by the court and once approved, creditors will not pursue payment for debts in any other way.
An Insolvency Practitioner receives a fee for arranging the IVA. According to Citizens Advice, the average fee is £5,000 but if the IVA is arranged through a debt management company, the fee is likely to be higher.
An IVA can be a good solution if a debtor has some money available but cannot maintain all contractual repayments on their debts. Under an IVA an arrangement is made to make monthly payments, usually over five years, and then the rest of the debts are written off.
However, if a debtor cannot sustain the payments for the full five years, for example if their circumstances change, the IVA will fail and all the debts will still be outstanding. The money paid so far will only have fractionally reduced the original debt as most of the repayment will have gone towards the Insolvency Practitioner’s fees. In the event of an IVA failing, any interest or charges that have been put on hold may be reapplied. The debtor can then be made bankrupt or will have to make new arrangements to pay each of the creditors.
Wendy Tozer, Debt Advice Manager at Perennial said:
“I cannot stress enough how important it is to get good, independent debt advice before entering into an IVA as there may be more suitable solutions for dealing with the debts.”
Perennial has a UK wide team of highly qualified and experienced debt advisers who can help anyone with debts, however large or small. Wendy Tozer continues:
“We look at all the options available to the people we support and decide if an IVA is the right solution for them. We can help someone apply for bankruptcy, a debt relief order (DRO), deal with emergencies, negotiate with creditors and represent people in court if required. If an IVA does seem to be the best solution, we can arrange a no obligation, face to face consultation with a reputable firm of Insolvency Practitioners before any final decisions are made.”
Perennial’s advice is completely free and independent and no payment is received for referrals to third party practitioners.
Perennial’s Debt Advice Service is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority(www.fca.org.uk)