Debt can certainly feel suffocating at times, especially if you find yourself dodging calls from creditors and trying to get your life back. Everyone ends up in a little debt at some point, but working to get out of debt is nothing to be ashamed or frightened of.
Increasingly, couples are beginning what’s known as a Trust Deed to help with this process, so that married life can begin just a little more smoothly.
What Is a Trust Deed?
A trust deed, usually in Scotland, is a formal, but voluntary arrangement that allows you to gain more control over your debt. You’ll pay back the calculated amount using a timeline instead of filing for bankruptcy.
Basically, this is a contract drawn up between you and your creditors to pay a percentage of debt that you’re able to afford. It’s different from other solutions thanks to how flexible it is, providing you with a more affordable option, along with protection from creditors.
A regulated person, known as your Insolvency Practitioner, will collect a certain amount each month to distribute to your creditors and after 3-5 years, you’ll be completely debt free.
How It Works
In order to set up a trust deed in Scotland, there are a few different steps to get started with. First, begin by finding advice about your debts, your income, your expenditures, any assets you own and any possible future charges. An adviser will help you with this and will let you know if you qualify for this solution.
If you do qualify, your adviser will help you set one up. All they need is some evidence of your financial circumstances with documents like:
- Recent pay slips, benefit awards, or bank statements
- A mortgage redemption statement
- Bills, creditor statements, or letters
- Personal identification
Using this information, your adviser will be able to enter your details into the Common Financial Tool. From here, they can draw up your documentation so you know how much you’ll be paying each month, how charges will work and what types of obligations you have. After you sign, your creditors then have 5 weeks to accept or deny.
For the most part, these deeds work for 3-5 years and you will have to have periodic reviews conducted with your provider. Contact your provider if anything happens, like a pay increase or decrease and be sure to abide by your obligations.
How it Affects Couples
Couples may find that trust deeds are a good option, especially if one of them is in a lot of debt. By using a trust deed, each partner’s assets and debt is laid out, along with what happens if the assets must be divided. Who pays what bills are set up here, as well so a new spouse doesn’t have to feel responsible for the other’s debt.
To put it simply, a trust deed ensures that you’re the one paying off your debt, not your spouse. They’ll still contribute to the household, of course, but the bulk of the payments fall on you. To help you out, your spouse could pay all of the rent, or other bills, even if the debt is your responsibility.
It’s great that you only have one affordable monthly payment and are able to escape your creditors, too – although there are a few things you and your spouse need to keep in mind. This includes the fact that if your situation changes, you need to be sure your creditors accept the new deal.
Creditors may also request bankruptcy if it fails and you might see an impact on your credit rating. Be sure to go over all the possibilities with your spouse before you sign.
It’s not easy to deal with debt and it feels even more difficult to get out of one when you want to start your marriage off right. A trust deed can be a great solution though, offering you and your partner a way to shake off the debt affordably and regain control of your life. It may be intimidating, but talk to your new spouse and get started.