I’m a creditor: how does DAS affect me?
If your debtor has an approved debt payment programme under DAS, you cannot take any enforcement action (diligence) or sequestrate (bankrupt) them.
Similarly, if your debtor’s details are on the DAS Register because they have intimated their intention to apply for a DAS debt payment programme, or have a proposal which is awaiting approval, you are unable to take enforcement action against them.
Throughout the period of the programme, you cannot contact your debtor and try to convince them to come out of DAS, or to persuade them to make additional payments to you for a debt that is included in the programme.
Debtors taking part in DAS are not allowed to obtain credit, either alone or jointly, over £2,000 unless they obtain the approval of the DAS Administrator.
Therefore, you should not give credit to someone under DAS unless it has been agreed by the DAS Administrator, otherwise you may be unable to recover that debt.
However, if a debtor does obtain additional credit while in a debt payment programme without the permission of the DAS Administrator, their programme may be revoked and could result in them being made bankrupt.
What are the benefits of DAS to creditors?
The benefits of DAS to creditors include:
- The debtor has actively sought money advice
- The debtor’s income and expenditure has been assessed by an approved money adviser
- The debtor wishes to repay their debt
- The DAS Administrator takes into account any comments from you when considering the debt payment programme
- You will receive a regular payment towards the debt owed
- 90 per cent or more of the debt will be repaid if the programme is completed
- No additional debt recovery costs are involved
- The DAS Administrator oversees the programme
- You can track the case through the Debt Arrangement Scheme Hub, DASH.
How does DAS work?
A debt payment programme under DAS will only be considered after a money adviser has reviewed the debtor’s debts, income and expenditure and confirmed details of outstanding debts with creditors.
The money adviser will contact you (accompanied by a signed mandate authorising them to act on the debtor’s behalf) to ascertain what outstanding debt the debtor has, contractual payments and details of existing payment protection, etc. At this stage, neither party is committed to the debt payment programme.
If you write to the debtor to say you intend to take court action against them to recover a debt, the debtor may ask their money adviser to write to the DAS Administrator to signal their intention to apply for a debt payment programme.
The DAS Administrator will then register this moratorium on the DAS Register and Register of Insolvencies. Once on these registers, the debtor is protected for a period of six weeks against any creditor action. Therefore, during this period, you are unable to enforce payment of any debt(s).
Regardless of whether the debtor has signalled their intention to apply to the DAS Administrator, once their application is received, they are protected against any creditor action.
What is DASH?
The DAS Administrator is responsible for administering DAS through a computer system called the Debt Arrangement Scheme Hub (DASH).
DASH is an interactive system that offers all parties involved in a debt payment programme - debtors, creditors, money advisers, the DAS Administrator and payment distributors - access to details of the programmes they are involved in through a single secure online service.
Each party has their own secure login, password details and permission rights depending on their role. The DAS Administrator will maintain the system and allocate access to the parties involved.
Money advisers can prepare, submit and, in some cases, administer debt payment programmes using DASH.
Creditors are able to access their own specific information in the programmes they are involved in. In addition, they will be able use the interactive system to confirm debts, receive and respond to proposals and submit applications to vary or revoke a programme.
Payment distributors access and update the system, for example, to report any payments that have not been received, while debtors are able to access the system to observe the progress of their programme.