What is an IVA?

An Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) is a legal agreement between you and your unsecured creditors. We can assess if an IVA is suitable for you as not everyone is eligible. For instance, you must have regular house income, live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland. (If you live in Scotland, see Trust Deeds). There are fees involved with Individual Voluntary Arrangements, find out more on "Our Fees" page.

Is an IVA right for you?

It is important that you consider the features and benefits of an IVA. To understand if it’s the right option for you, here is some key information to help.

Once your IVA has been Accepted, you could benefit from:

  • Lower monthly repayments to your creditors based on what you can afford.
  • Frozen interest and charges so that your debts do not increase.
  • Full protection from your creditors - they cannot pursue you for their debt.
  • A fixed agreement usually lasting 5 years, after which any remaining unsecured debts could be debt free.
  • Protection from legal action by creditors.

Things to consider

  • If you don't stick to your agreed terms your creditors could take action against you and interest may resume on your debts. If the arrangement fails you could be at risk of bankruptcy.
  • There are restrictions to your expenditure we have to adhere to and if you have assets then you may be asked to make these available to your IVA e.g. savings plans.
  • If you are a homeowner you may be asked to remortgage your property in the 5th year of your IVA, to release any equity to creditors. If a remortgage is not available an IVA can be extended for 12 months.
  • An IVA will appear on your credit file for up to 6 years from the date it commences. During this time it may be difficult for you to obtain credit and you may be subject to higher rates of interest.
  • Creditors do not have to approve the IVA.
  • Any unsecured debts that were not included would remain outstanding.
  • An IVA will be recorded and entered on to a public register.