A DSA (short for Debt Settlement Arrangement) is a formal debt solution designed to help people that are struggling with unsecured debts, such as credit cards, loans, overdrafts etc… The main aim of a DSA is to:
If you are experiencing financial difficulty and would like to find out more about a DSA, fill in the form and we will get in touch. We will assess your situation and advise you on all options available. All advice is free and confidential and you are under no obligation by speaking with us.
Below is a typical example of a DSA. Our client is an elder retired marrie female. She is struggling to repay loans on her pension income. After assessing her situation, it was determined that she was insolvent (unable to pay her debts) and that a DSA was a suitable option for her. Her creditors accepted her DSA proposal.
In the DSA, she will make reduced payments for 5 years. On completion of the DSA, any remaining debts will be written off and she will be able to start over free of her debts.
A DSA is a formal insolvency solution that helps you address your unaffordable unsecured debts, by allowing you to repay what you can realistically afford. An unsecured debt is a debt that isn’t secured against any assets, so the likes of Credit cards, Overdrafts, store cards, some types of loans etc... If you are struggling with repayments on any of these types of debt, then a DSA might be a possible solution to help you address your financial difficulties.
How much your monthly payments are in a DSA is entirely dependent on your financial situation and your total debt level. An assessment must be carried out to determine if it is a suitable solution for your circumstances. A PIP (Personal Insolvency Practitioner) is the professional who is both qualified and authorised by the ISI (Insolvency Service of Ireland) to work out if a DSA is the right option for you and who can facilitate your DSA application. You cannot enter into a DSA without using the services of a PIP. If you apply for a DSA and your creditors approve it, your PIP is the professional who will oversee your DSA for it’s duration, through to completion.
A DSA usually consists of a series of affordable monthly payments that go towards your debts, usually for a period of 5 years. The monthly payments come from the income left over, after a realistic standard of living has been worked out from your household income. In some cases, a DSA may be shorter or may involve using a lump sum payment to address the debts, if that is something you can gain access to.
When you successfully finish making your DSA payments, any remaining debts are legally cleared and you can start over debt free and begin to work on repairing your credit rating, which will have been impacted through your insolvency. If you would like to find out more about a DSA,. Get in touch for free, confidential, no obligation advice.
Determining if you are eligible for a DSA really depends on your assessment, but there are some specific criteria involved. You must:
In a DSA, you make affordable monthly payments towards your debts, that usually last for 5 years. This is sometimes shorter, if, for example you can gain access to a lump sum payment to settle the debts. Your PIP will distribute these payments to your creditors involved in the DSA.
On successful completion of the DSA, any remaining unsecured debts are legally cleared / written off, allowing you to start over again.
We will have an initial chat with you to determine if you are Insolvent (unable to pay your debts), and what Debt soutions you might be eligiible for. This involves assessing your current situation, including gathering information about your debts. We also use 'Reasonable Living Expenses' guidelines to work out your monthly household budget. All of this information helps us determine your affordability and how much money you might have available to service your debts.
When we have all the required initial information, we will advise you of you all possible options for addressing your debts, including if a DSA is possible. You can then take the time to review these options and decide if you would like to proceed with any Insolvency applications. All advice is free and confidential and you are under no obligations to proceed with any solution by speaking to us.
If you decide to proceed with a DSA with one of our PIPs, we will begin gathering the required documentation and working on your Prescribed Financial Statement (PFS). The purpose of the PFS is to document everything accurately in writing. The PFS will summarise your assets, liabilities, income and expenses. Your PIP will explain all options available to you including the process of a DSA in more detail, discussing the pros and cons, any fees that will be involved and what debts can and cannot be included etc...
When you and your PIP are happy with the PFS, you must declare that all information is true and accurate in the PFS. Your PIP will make a note in writing of your recommended course of action and confirm that in their opinion, everything in the PFS is true and accurate.
You must then decide if you are happy with the recommended course of action and the solution that is being put forward. When you confirm that you are happy and want to proceed with a DSA application, you will appoint our PIP. The PIP will confirm that they are acting on your behalf, and will submit your application to the Insolvency Service of Ireland (ISI) and the Court for review.
Once the ISI have checked your application and are happy that all the information is in order, they will send all required documentaion to the relevant court (Circuit or High) along with a Protective Certificate. The court will review all documentation and when satisfied, they will issue your Protective Certificate (PC). The ISI will record details of the PC on their Public Register of Protective Certificates.
Your PIP notifies all creditors involved that you intend to apply for a DSA and your PC is in place. Your creditors cannot take legal action against you or your assets when your PC is in place. A PC is usally granted for 70 days, but can be extended. When you have had a PC granted, you cannot have another one issued for atleast 12 months, without order of the court.
Your PIP will start formulating your DSA proposal. They will invite your creditors to propose how they would like the debts to be dealt with and will provide them with a copy of your PFS. When your PIP has finished drafting your DSA propsal, it will be provided to you for your consent.
After you have consented to the DSA Proposal, your PIP will arrange a 'Meeting of Creditors', where your creditors will vote to accept or reject the proposal. At least 65% of your creditors (by debt value) must vote in favour for the DSA to be accepted.
If the proposal is accepted by creditors, the PIP will let the ISI know. The ISI will notify the court, who will approve your DSA, provided they are satisfied. The ISI will record your DSA in the public DSA Register and your DSA comes into effect.
If the DSA is rejected by your creditors, you may have to seek alternative Insolvency options, or if you do not get the situation resolved with your creditors, we can review your circumstances again in the future and try and re-apply for a DSA.
Your PIP will supervise your DSA throughout it's duration, to make sure everything is running as it should be, in line with the terms of your arrangement. Your DSA will require a high level of oversight and admin and your PIP will review your DSA (usually annually) to make sure it remains affordable, including reviewing payments and issuing reports to creditors. The PIP will retain any agreed funds from your payments to cover fees and expenses.
If you have a change in your financial circumstances during the DSA, you must notify your PIP as soon as possible, so that they can work with your creditors, the ISI and the court to try and agree a variation and keep the DSA running successfully. It is important to work with your PIP during any changes. If you do not, or if you default on multiple payments and refuse to work with your PIP, your DSA could potentially fail. If your DSA fails you could become fully liable for all of the debts involved, minus any payments you have made during your DSA.
During your DSA you may not seek credit over the value of €650 without informing the lender that you are in a DSA. You may not sell or deal in property above a certain value, outside the terms of the DSA. Your partner or spouse is not affected by these restrictions (if applicable).
On successful completion of your DSA your unsecured debts are cleared. Your PIP will let the ISI and your lenders know that you have complied with all terms of your arrangment and that all payments have been distrubuted accordingly. The successful DSA is recorded on the DSA register. You may now start to work on repairing your credit rating and resume typical financial activities.
Firstly, we will only put forward a DSA application if we believe it will be successful. This will help increase your chances of a successful DSA. If we do not think a DSA would be accepted, we would not put an application through for you. In saying that, we cannot 100% guarantee if a DSA will be accepted as we cannot predict how lenders will behave, so there may be times where a DSA proposal is rejected, even if we believe it would be the best outcome for all parties involved.
If this happens you may have to seek alternative insolvency arrangements. If, in the future your situation has not been resolved, you could get in touch stating you would like to try again with a DSA application.
All fees and costs will be explained in detail by your PIP, prior to your DSA application.
Some PIPs charge an initial consultation fee when you are entering into a DSA. We offer a free initial consultation. Only if your DSA application is successful will we receive any fees for adminstering and managing your DSA. The fees are built into your agreed payments to creditors, so you will never receive a bill from us. If your DSA application is not accepted, you pay nothing for the work that has been done on your proposal.
The ISI have also waived their application fees for a DSA.
A PIA is a solution created to help people address their difficulties with secured debts and unsecured debts. The purpose of a PIA is to help you remain in your home wherever possible.
A DRN is a formal debt solution, created to help people who are unable to repay their debts (up to the value of €35,000) and have little or no assets.
Bankruptcy is a formal solution for people who are unable to pay their debts (over the value of €20,000) and have explored all other Insolvency options. It is usually seen as a last resort debt solution.
If you would like a free Insolvency review of your financial situation, fill in the Fact Find form providing as much information as possible and send it through. Our advisors will review your information and get in touch to advise you of all options available.
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nationaldebtrelief.ie is a trading style of McCambridge Duffy. McCambridge Duffy Limited is a Limited Company registered in Ireland | Registered number 527584 | Registered office Suite 6, Spencer House, High Road, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal, F92 V8XC
All our advice is free. A fee is only payable where further services are requested. All fees will be explained in detail and discussed prior to commencement of any debt solution.
Ronan Duffy, Daragh Duffy, Daniel Rule, James Green and Judy Mooney are authorised by the Insolvency Service of Ireland to carry on practice as personal insolvency practitioners. Ronan Duffy, Daniel Rule, James Green and Judy Mooney are authorised to act as insolvency practitioners by Institute of Chartered Accountants Scotland.