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Where's my debt gone?!

(14 Posts)
newstartnewthinking Sun 10-Jan-16 00:59:10

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?

Thank you

BrassMonk Sun 10-Jan-16 01:38:56

I think a debt is automatically written off six years after creditor last contacts you?
Alternatively maybe your ex paid it if it was in his name also.

VertigoNun Sun 10-Jan-16 01:41:16

Have you moved a few times?

newstartnewthinking Sun 10-Jan-16 08:35:59

My ex definitely hasn't paid it off and I was in my name anyway.

It has been over 6 years however. Does that mean I don't owe it? Reason I wanted to clear was so I have a chance of getting a mortgage in the next few years. Is that still possible?

newstartnewthinking Sun 10-Jan-16 08:36:38

Yes I've moved but I entered all my previous addresses on the credit report

LIZS Sun 10-Jan-16 08:53:43

Could they have been in contact with the dmp company? Do they know your whereabouts? It isn't as simple as walking away after 6 years.

Palomb Sun 10-Jan-16 08:56:48

Whatever you do don't contact the people you think you might owe money to without getting some decent legal advice.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Sun 10-Jan-16 09:07:03

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.

listsandbudgets Sun 10-Jan-16 11:37:35

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..

Step Change have have some details on statute barred debts it may be worth talking to them for further advise. If you had debts such as council tax or anything ot the inland revenue I'm afraid they can still persue you.

It sounds as if you've potentially been extremely lucky. Get to paying off the small debt and enjoy a hopefully debt free 2016.

VodkaJelly Sun 10-Jan-16 12:15:29

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.

listsandbudgets Sun 10-Jan-16 13:02:16

Fair enough Vodka happy to stand correct. sorry if I've misled anyone

Optimum007 Mon 11-Jan-16 11:58:07

Be careful of being lulled into a false sense of security. Look up 'Gone Away Network'. You may have this marked permanently against your credit score and or report.

OurBlanche Mon 11-Jan-16 12:11:27

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.

biscuitkumquat Mon 11-Jan-16 14:36:31

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.

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