Frequently asked questions
What is the first step dealing with my debt problem?
Contact us, complete our application and send the supporting documents to us.
Why use Debt debt review?
Debt review was formally introduced by the National Credit Act (NCA) to help consumers who are having trouble with their debts. We will negotiate with your credit providers on your behalf and design a manageable debt repayment plan that you can afford, so that you can take control of your finances and your future.
What is the purpose of debt review?
The purpose of a Debt debt review is to provide a solution by restructuring payments so that the consumer can meet his / her basic living expenses. He / she must administer and manage the process on your behalf.
What is Debt Counselling?
Debt Counselling is a solution for over-indebted consumers that ensures sufficient protection against loss of assets and assists with the restructuring of debt so that the consumer can meet his / her basic living expenses. The National Credit Act 34 of 2005 makes provision for debt review and arrangement mechanisms in cases of over-indebt ness.
What is sequestration?
Persons who are no longer able to pay their debt and it is out of control. Surrendering of your estate in terms of the insolvency law entails an application in the high court. You could loose some or all of your assets.
What is liquidation?
When a business is unable to pay its debts it is usually placed in liquidation. The assets of the business will be sold on a public auction.
How do I apply for Debt Counselling?
You apply for Debt Counselling by completing an application form. There after you can print, sign and fax or e-mail the application to us together with you supporting documents. We will then proceed with the process.
Who will deal with my creditors?
The Debt Counsellor or the attorney appointed by us will act on your behalf and negotiate with your creditors.
How long does it take to apply for Debt Counselling?
The application process is fast. We will process your application as soon as we receive your form plus supporting documents. We will notify all your creditors with a formal notice. This takes 2-5 days, normally shorter. As soon as all your creditors have been informed, you are protected from creditors.
We are married in community of property. Does my partner need to be included?
Yes, if you are married in community of property you are one estate and therefore both of you have to apply as a joint application.
Do I have to attend an interview with a Debt Counsellor?
No, we can organize everything over the phone and e-mail, except certain documentation that requires your signature and then needs to be sent back to us. But should you prefer to meet in person this can be arranged if you are in a reasonable traveling distance in Gauteng.
When is a consumer under debt review?
After the client has successfully applied for Debt Review and the Debt Counsellor has notified the credit providers and registered the process with the National Credit Regulator.
I have received summons, can you help me?
The biggest mistake that most people make is to leave Debt Counselling too late. As soon as you have received a summons from your creditor we can not stop repossession. You can however still ask your creditor to stop the repossession. You will have to negotiate a payment plan with your creditor. As soon as we have detail of your new payment plan and your creditor has agreed that you can place the payments under debt counseling we can continue with Debt Counselling.
The attorney of the creditor will normally send you a Section 129 final warning before the issue of a summons. You will have 10 working days to apply for Debt Counselling after the issue of this notice. If you don't apply in time you will not be able to include this debt under Debt Counselling.
Can I see a Debt Counsellor if I received a letter of demand?
We can still assist you. You urgently need to approach us immediately.
What if I already received a letter of demand?
The consumer should visit a Debt Counsellor urgently if they receive a letter of demand. Debt Counsellors can make arrangements on a letter of demand or warrant of execution but if a court judgment has been taken they cannot do anything.
Can I still go under debt review if I have been black-listed by a creditor?
Yes, you can be placed under Debt Review at anytime, provided a Debt Counsellor has declared you over-indebted.
What happens if I received a letter of demand?
You have less than 20 days to see a Debt Counsellor for help.
Can I still apply for debt counseling after being summonsed?
Yes. The amount being summoned for will not form part of the restructured payment plan, but we will negotiate with the specific creditor to agree to include this in the restructured payment plan, although they are not obliged to accept it.
Can all my debts be included?
We will include all credit agreements, home loans, vehicle finance, credit cards, overdrafts, store cards, personal loans and micro-loans.
Will a consumer still be able to use accounts and credit facilities?
No, once notification has been given to the credit providers, the accounts will be blocked from further use.
How long will it take for my situation to improve?
Immediately, your budget will be calculated to allow you reasonable living expenses, whilst paying your creditors an amount that is affordable to you. Direct payment towards the creditors will stop, and a reduced monthly payment will be made towards the National Payment Distribution Agency (NPDA) appointed by the National Credit Regulator. This will all happen within the act.
Can my creditors still take action against me?
Once you enter into Debt Review your creditors may not exercise or enforce by litigation or any other judicial process any right or security under that agreement until the Magistrate’s Court hearing the matter makes a decision which it considers to be just in the circumstances.
What if I am unemployed?
No. You have to earn an income for us to be able to assist you.
Will I be able to obtain credit again?
When the consumer’s financial position betters, which it will if he upholds his restructured repayment agreement, and gives his full co-operation to us, a clearance certificate will be issued and his status removed from the credit bureaus database.
Will I be listed on credit bureaus?
Yes. After completion of the application form - all credit bureaus will be informed that you are under debt review. After you have received a clearance certificate stating that your debt has been cleared - your name will be taken off from the Credit Bureaus.
Can creditors refuse the repayment proposal?
Yes, the creditor can reject the repayment proposal, although they are likely to accept a reasonable offer. Should they reject the proposal, a magistrates order will need to be obtained. This is included in the Debt Councelling process.
Will my employer be notified of my financial problem?
No. We treat all information that you provide to us as private and confidential, and we will never contact you at work unless asked to do so.
Can the consumer pay the creditors directly if the consumer has additional cash?
No, there is a restructuring plan, in place. The consumer must contact the Debt Counsellor to make arrangements.
What proof will I have that I am under debt review?
You will be issued with a legal document to this effect from the Debt Counsellor.
Why can a garnishee not be included?
It is already a Court Order and only a Court can make a change to the Court Order.
Must I continue to pay my accounts?
Yes. The creditors cannot take legal action for 60 business days after you apply for Debt Review but you must continue to make payments, because if your application is unsuccessful, you will be in default and the creditors can take legal action after those 60 business days.
Can I apply for credit while I am under debt review?
Will I be black-listed if I apply for Debt Review?
No. There is no black-listing but if the Debt Counsellor finds the consumer to be over-indebted, they will add a flag to the consumer’s credit record asking creditors not to lend the consumer money because he or she is already over-indebted. This will be removed once the debt has been repaid and when the consumer is no longer over-indebted.
When will I be removed from credit bureaus?
The moment you are no longer in arrears and have paid off most debt excluding bonds, the Debt Counsellor will remove you from Debt Review and notify credit bureaus that you are no longer under Debt Review or over-indebted even though you may still have to pay off your bond. In other words, it is a sign that you have now learnt how to effectively manage your money.
Who do I pay each month when in Debt Counseling?
You will be allocated a Payment Distribution Agency (PDA) appointed by the National Credit Regulator where you will make a reduced affordable single payment each month. The PDA will ensure that the correct amount is paid to all your credit providers on a Monthly basis. We monitor these payments on a monthly basis to ensure a smooth ongoing process. Do not pay any debt counselor any fees. All funds must be paid to PDA.
How does the payment to creditors work?
You will make one payment to the Payment Distribution Agency every month. There are currently 6 PDA`s in South Africa. They are all registered with the National Credit Regulator. We will send a list of all your creditors with amount to be paid to the PDA. The PDA will pay all your creditors for you each month. You will not pay your creditors yourself. All payments must go via the Payment Distribution Agency. Even if you want to make a once off additional payment, you must pay the PDA.
How much will I pay each month?
The amount you will pay to the PDA depends on your budget submitted in your application too how much you can afford to pay each month. This will be the amount you have left each month after paying for your essential expenses before any debt.
Will my creditors stop calling me?
Your creditors will stop calling you as soon as they have received the formal notice. Sometimes not all the departments of the bank/store are aware that you have applied for debt counseling and will still call you. That is why we will give you copies of the formal notice to forward to you creditor. They will then see that you have applied for debt counseling and stop calling you.
Will my house, car and other assets be protected from creditors while under debt counseling?
Yes, it will be protected. Debt Counselling is there to help the over in debited customer by helping the customer to manage with his monthly expenses. The creditors help by agreeing to lower the monthly payments. As soon as the creditors have agreed to the lower payments, they may not repossess any of your assets. When the customer is still in the application phase he is protected as well. Credit providers must give the customer 60 working days to work the process.
What happens if I miss a monthly payment?
If you miss a monthly repayment the credit providers will terminate the debt review and start legal proceedings which will include judgments and garnishee orders. If you are struggling to make your monthly repayment contact me immediately so I can advise the credit providers of your situation and work out a more affordable debt repayment plan.
What about unexpected or not monthly expenses outside my normal budget?
There will be occasional expenses such as car maintenance, out of pocket medical expenses, household breakages, annual license fees ect. A calculated monthly amount in your budget will make provision for this.