Moving abroad to escape unpaid debts – what happens?
June 4, 2018
If you are drowning with unmanageable debt, you may be tempted to try and escape this for good by leaving the country. You may be considering a move abroad for other reasons, such as to be closer to family or for better employment opportunities. However, does moving abroad mean your creditors can no longer chase you? Moreover are you even allowed to permanently leave the country if you owe money?
First it must be said that non-payment of debts is not a criminal offence; therefore this alone will not prevent you from obtaining a visa or moving abroad. However, leaving the country is not a way of wiping the slate clean financially.
You may have heard that following a period of six years, debts become statute barred meaning that although they will remain, they cannot be legally enforced. However, what you may not realise is that regardless of where you are residing, a creditor can apply to get a County Court Judgment (CCJ) issued against you. It is important to be aware that CCJs can be enforced on your return to your country even if six years have passed. If you leave the country without giving creditors forwarding contact information, legal action will served at your last known address. If you do notify creditors of your new address, legal action can only be started in that country.
Some countries, including Australia and Canada, have reciprocal agreements with the UK whereby debt can be chased and enforcement action taken. Therefore depending on the size of your debt, a UK creditor could sell your account on to a debt collection agency in your new country who will use the usual channels to pursue you for payment. If you have any assets in the UK, such as stocks or property, a creditor could apply for a charging order against these. This can be done even if you are out of the country and would mean that when you came to sell up, you would need to pay the creditor what you owe out of the proceeds of this.
Debts will continue to amass while you are out of the country with fines and interest being added on to the existing balances. If you do then return to the UK after a year or so, you may find your debt problems worse than when you left. Your credit record will also continue to take a hit as the defaults mount up.
If you are considering moving abroad, you may be unconcerned about your credit file here at home. However, in many countries you will find it extremely difficult to obtain credit until you have been a resident there for some time. Consequently you may find yourself relying on your UK banking assets in order to help you buy a car, purchase new furniture etc., when settling into life in your new country. With this in mind, you should try to ensure your UK accounts are well maintained as they may have to support you throughout the early stages of your move.
With all this in mind, moving abroad while owing money in the UK is not advisable. If you are planning a move overseas it is far better to do all you can to deal with your remaining debts while you are still in the country. Regardless of your situation there is a solution out there and knowing you have a plan in place to deal with it can go a long way to giving you peace of mind. By dealing with your debts before moving on to your new location will give you the chance to enjoy your time there knowing you are free to return to the UK as and when you choose without having to look over your shoulder.
If you are struggling with debt, call the experts at Scotland Debt Solutions. We can talk you through all the options available and help you confront you debt head-on and work towards clearing this for good. Call us today on 0800 063 9250 and arrange a free no-obligation consultation.
The past five years have seen a “relentless” rise in the number of British parents being pushed into poverty despite being in employment. That’s according to a new report published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF), which has highlighted the growing prevalence of in-work poverty among families across the country. Roughly one in five (22 […]
Amidst the flurry of social gatherings, last minute shopping, and getting in the supplies for hosting the big Christmas dinner, the festive season can end up being extremely expensive. While we all want to enjoy this time of year, it is important not to let your budget run away with you. If you are wondering […]
The Rental Exchange scheme is a new initiative which allows tenants to have their monthly rental payment recorded on their credit file. This is a huge step forward for tenants, who until now, were not rewarded for consistently paying their rent on time. This is in contrast to homeowners, whose monthly mortgage payment is recorded […]
The debt arrangement scheme, or DAS, is a government-backed procedure designed to offer residents of Scotland who are experiencing escalating debt the chance to fully repay their creditors rather than declare full insolvency. Every type of debt solution has its benefits and drawbacks, so let’s have a look at some of the pros and cons […]
Entering into a Scottish trust deed is an effective way to escape unmanageable debt, and allows for a fresh financial start once the trust deed term has come to an end. As with all official debt procedures, however, there are negative aspects that require consideration. One of these factors is the adverse effect a trust […]
Trust deeds are formal insolvency procedures that are available only in Scotland. They offer a viable alternative to bankruptcy if you’re struggling to repay unsecured debt, and generally last for three to four years. Trust deeds work by transferring your assets to the trustee, and making a single affordable monthly repayment that is then distributed […]