Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS)
Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS)
What is a Debt Arrangement Scheme?
A Debt Arrangement Scheme is a legal debt management scheme available to Scottish residents and overseen by the Scottish government.
The scheme allows you to apply for a debt payment programme (DPP), which helps you pay your debts at an affordable rate.
The repayment term will vary depending on how much debt you’re in and how much you can afford to pay. All interest, fees, penalties or charges on your debts are frozen during a DAS and are then waived once you have completed the scheme.
If you enter a DAS, you’ll also be protected from any legal action from creditors and will not have to have any further direct contact with your creditors. Assets like your car and home will also be protected as long as you keep up with your payments.
This solution is a great way for people to get some breathing space to focus on repaying the money owed without the stress of being chased by creditors.
It also offers a fresh financial start as all debts included in a DAS are repaid in full once the scheme is completed.Check if you qualify
What kinds of debt can be included?
Debt arrangement schemes generally take on unsecured debts such as:
- Council tax arrears
- Payday or bank loans
- Utility bills
- Credit/store cards
*Mortgage arrears can be included, but only in certain circumstances
How does a Debt Arrangement Scheme work?
The first step is to contact a DAS-approved Money Advisor to discuss your circumstances. They will then have a confidential discussion with you about your financial circumstances to work through your income and expenditure to calculate your disposable income that will be used to make a monthly payment to your creditors.
You can use our debt assistant to check if this is the right solution for you. It will show you the different potential minimum monthly payment required for each debt solution.
The results shown are only indicative. Contact details will be requested to discuss your circumstances and conduct a full income and expenditure to help provide the best advice possible.
Should you decide that a DAS is the best debt solution for your circumstances, the money adviser will then make an application for a Debt Payment Programme (DPP) on your behalf as individuals cannot apply for this solution on their own.
A proposal is then sent to your creditors for consideration and approval and they are given 21 days to respond. If they do not respond, it is then presumed that they have consented.
If one or more creditors object, the DPP will then be considered by the DAS Administrator (The Accountant in Bankruptcy). If the AIB deems that the application is ‘fair and reasonable’, they can legally force your creditors to comply with it.
Once approved, the arrangement will be recorded on the DAS register and all you need to do is make one affordable monthly payment to an approved Payments Distributor.
All interest, fees, penalties or charges on your debts are then frozen until you have completed the Debt Payment Programme (DPP). Creditors can also no longer take any recovery or legal action against you at this stage.
Under new regulations introduced in November 2019, you will not be charged any fees for the setup or maintenance of your DAS.
Advantages of a Debt Arrangement Scheme
- Creditors cannot take legal action against you once your DAS is approved
- It is dealt with by a money advisor on your behalf, relieving you of the stress of dealing with your creditors.
- All interest, fees, penalties, or charges on your debts are frozen from the date you apply and are written off when it has been completed.
- Assets such as your home or your car will not be affected as long as you keep up with payments to them.
- Sole traders may be able to include business debts in a DAS.
- Payments are based on what you can reasonably afford within your circumstances.
- If your circumstances change during the DAS, it may be possible to vary your payment amount and/or apply for a payment holiday for up to 6 months.
Disadvantages of a Debt Arrangement Scheme
- The Debt Payment Programme (DPP) will last until your debts are repaid in full, there is no fixed time period.
- You cannot apply for a DAS on your own – you must consult an Approved Money Adviser.
- It can affect your credit rating and may affect your ability to obtain credit in the future.
- It is only available to Scottish residents
You could write off up to 75% of unsecured debt with our debt assistant.Check if you Qualify
Why Carrington Dean?
At Carrington Dean, we’re here to guide you to a fresh financial start.
With extensive experience in the field and government-approved advisors, we’re strongly positioned to help you make the right choice when it comes to debt.
We’re Scotland’s largest independent debt solutions company, and we’ve successfully helped over 20,000 people resolve their financial difficulties and get some breathing space.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you are a Scottish resident with unsecured debt, you will be eligible for a DAS. However, you must seek advice from a qualified money adviser who will advise if this is the best solution for your situation.
If your DAS is approved, it will be recorded on the DAS register. This is available to the public and is used by credit reference agencies, alongside other insolvency registers, to add information to your credit report. This in turn will affect your credit score.
As such, your DAS is likely to have a negative impact on your credit score, however, you will be able to build this back up once your arrangement has been completed.
Your payments will be calculated based on what you can afford to pay after you have paid all your essential expenditure.
Thanks to new regulations, introduced in November 2019, you will not be charged for the set-up and management of the DAS.
Generally, you can include all unsecured debts in a DAS. This includes credit cards, loans, store cards and overdrafts.
Secured debts, such as mortgages and hire purchase agreements, including car finance, cannot be included in a DAS. Student loans and certain loans also cannot be included.
Unfortunately, if you are in a protected trust deed, are bankrupt, or are subject to a bankruptcy order, you won’t be able to apply.
This depends on your circumstances. Please contact us on 0141 221 2323 for further information and advice.
If your circumstances change in any way and you are struggling to make your monthly payments to your DAS, it is important to contact your money advisor. They can assess your situation and make the decision to apply to the DAS administrator for a payment holiday or a variation to reduce your payment amount depending on the severity of your situation.
As long as your missed payment is due to a payment holiday, subject to certain conditions, creditors are still prevented from taking legal action against you.
Generally, mortgage arrears are not included in your Debt Arrangement Scheme due to being a secured debt. However, in certain circumstances, they can be included, so it’s best to contact one of our money advisers for more information and advice.
You are legally bound by your DAS and are required to make the agreed monthly payment. You can elect to increase your payment amount, but if these are a regular occurrence, you may have to apply to vary the agreement.