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Tackling your debts

I'm in debt and working part time - what are my options?

Posted 04 March 2013

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You could still qualify for debt help from the Debt Advisory Centre if you work part time.

If you work part time, you might be on a lower income than others, and you might be wondering whether you could still qualify for debt help. Do lenders expect you to work full time? Do you qualify for more help if you don't work at all? Well, the answer to both of those questions is 'no'.

If you're in debt and working part-time, you could carry on working part time and still qualify for one of our debt solutions. The right one for you will depend on more than just your job, so it's best to speak to an adviser before making any decisions about your finances.


Debt Management

You could still qualify for a debt management plan if you work part time, as long as you can afford reasonable repayments: i.e. amounts that lenders accept and that allow you to clear your unsecured debts in full within a reasonable amount of time.

It's often possible to freeze interest and charges on unsecured debts during debt management, which can help speed up the repayment process, although lenders are not obliged to do that.

For more about debt management, click here.


Bankruptcy

You could still qualify for bankruptcy if you work part time. There are fees to apply for your own bankruptcy and you will be expected to make financial contributions (if you can afford to) before being officially 'discharged'.

Once you are discharged, any outstanding debt is written off.

If you go bankrupt, it can affect the kind of work you can do. It tends to affect professional occupations like jobs in certain legal fields, insolvency professions and company directors.

Having said that, you should really check your contract of employment before applying for bankruptcy, to see what your employer says about it.

If you have more questions about bankruptcy, you might be able to find the answers on our bankruptcy page.


DRO

A Debt Relief Order is an alternative to bankruptcy and you could still qualify for this form of debt help if you work part time - as long as you meet all the other qualifying criteria.

For example, a DRO can only help those with unsecured debts up to the value of £15,000 who don't own any property.

Click here to read the full qualifying criteria for a DRO.

Going through a DRO (which is a kind of insolvency) could affect your ability to carry out some professions. It's best to check your employment contract for any notes on this before applying.


IVA

You could still qualify for an IVA if you work part time, but only if the repayments are affordable. During an IVA you would have to make repayments for (usually) five years - and possibly release equity in your home.

An IVA is a useful alternative to bankruptcy that can help homeowners remain in their own home instead of forcing a sale.

Find out more about IVA's on this page.

We would only recommend an IVA if it was the best solution for your debt problems and if it was affordable.

You can speak to an adviser about any of the debt solutions we offer, and see how we could help you. You shouldn't make your mind up about any approach to debt until you've spoken to a professional and understood all the pros and cons.

by Kyri Levendi

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.