Stage 1: Missing one or two payments to a debt
The people you owe start with reminders by phone or in writing.
They ask you to:
- Make up any missed payments
- Bring your account up to date
Talk to them about a temporary payment break or reduced payments to avoid this.
They may also ask you about:
- Your situation, and
- Anything that makes it harder to pay
Stage 2: Missing three or four payments to a debt
The people you owe put more pressure on you at this stage.
You may find:
- The tone of their letters or calls is firmer
- They start to threaten further action
- They point you towards a debt advice agency for help
- Get in touch with us if you need advice
Soon you get a default notice.
You are probably getting to a point now where:
- Your accounts will be closed
- Further action is starting
- Lenders may pass on or sell your debts to another firm
- You may start getting contact from a new company
- Your lender should tell you first
Stage 3: Missing five or six payments to a debt
You are now getting lots of letters, phone calls and other contact from the people you owe.
They may take further action now if your regulated debts have defaulted.
Regulated debts include:
- Credit or store cards
- Personal loans
- Payday loans
- Hire purchase
Lenders usually pass debts to a collection company after a default.
Other more serious action could be happening or coming soon.
Creditors can take your debt to court and apply for a CCJ (County Court judgment) if you live in:
- Northern Ireland
This affects your credit file, but that should not be your main priority.
It is still not too late to contact us for help.