Massive background here. But long story short, I was in just over 15 grands worth of debt (My ex got me into it using credit cars and loans).
I attempted to pay it off once by entering a debt management, but they got me into more debt. Due to personal problems and an abusive ex that I fled, it's been just over 6 years since I've had any communications with my creditors.
Today, I joined experian to see my credit report, with the intention of facing what I owe and getting help to pay it off. When I looked, I only owed £360.. on a smaller credit card. Where has the rest gone? There is no mention of it. There is only one default on my account for £360.. Any ideas?
If it's been over six years since you last acknowledged the debt - in writing or by making a payment - the debt is statute barred and they cannot take you to court over it any longer. It also drops off your credit file after six years.
This is complicated by your DMP - did you cancel that? If they've been communicating with your creditors on your behalf, it's more messy.
Be careful how you proceed with this. Contacting the companies to ask about the debt could start the 6 year period off again as you would effectiely have acknowledged it. Also as others have said, if the debt managemet company have contacted them on your behalf in the 6 year period they may still have a claim..
listsandbudgets, that is not correct, once a debt is statute barred NOTHING will unbar it, you can take out a full page ad in every newspaper saying you owe the money, but once it has been statute barred, it cannot be reversed. And if the debt management company has contacted the creditors it still wont start the clock again, it has to be from the OP, either by a payment or WRITTEN acknowledgement (as in a payment plan). DMP companies will stop work on your case as soon as you stop making payments, they will not work for free.
If I was you OP I would look to make sure the companies you owe money to havent got a CCJ against you, this also would drop off your credit file after 6 years, (but still remain active, the only way to find out is to ring the courts and ask them to check but that is a complicated process.
And whatever you do never open a letter from LINK.
They are utter bastards. They buy 'old debts' and chase them to the ends of the Earth.
In 1987 I had a credit card. In 1997 I paid it off and closed the account. As happened back then there was a lag between payment and account closure and I assume that there was a balance of a penny or two generated. This is usually written off, obviously.
LINK bought the balance book and have been chasing me since about 2002. It has been statute barred for over a decade, over double the statute barring time, yet still Link are chasing me. We have sent all the letters you are supposed to send and they did all the illegal things we were warned they would do - you send £10 to get all records of the debt, they use it to pay off part of the debt, thus making it live again starting your 6 years all over again. We squashed each and every attempt.
They stopped for a while. Then, after we had moved, they started again.
So, before you do anything, get legal advice and reply to no letters.
OP, there are 3 different credit reference agencies used in the UK.
Equifax Experian Callcredit.
I would suggest that you get reports from them all, as they can be very different.
If you have had no contact (including making payments) for 6 years (I'm assuming you're in England), then the debts are statute barred, but that doesn't mean that they no longer exist, it just means that the creditor cannot take you to court to enforce, and cannot chase you if you ask them not to.
You need to make sure that any of the creditors haven't already taken you to court & obtained a judgement, because that may mean that it would no longer be statute barred.
Also, 6 years (in England) is only for unsecured debt. It's 12 years for secured capital.