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My IVA Has Failed And I’m At The End of My Rope and Considering Death. – Charlie


“Dear Steve,

I had an IVA for 2 years -now failed due to I cannot afford the repayment in the first place anyway, my income was manipulated by my supervisor so that I can get through the IVA petition. Manage to keep it going for 2 years by borrowinf from pot a to pay pot b, so on and so forth. Now, I am at the end of the road, with more debts than I started. I just received the notice from my IVA supervisor that my IVA had failed and now I am at the mercy of my creditors. They may take my home.

Is there a way out for me and to save my home? I only own 50% of my property and it is in negative equity at this moment in time. Or this is actually the end of the road for me – death is the only answer?


Dear Charlie,

For those that are not aware what an IVA is, it is an Individual Voluntary Arrangement and is used in the UK to avoid bankruptcy by people that can afford to make a binding payment as voted on by at least 75% of your creditors.

An IVA is like a debt management plan except it is a formal and binding agreement put forward by a licensed insolvency practitioner, typically an accountant. The agreement is administered by an IVA Supervisor, typically the same insolvency practitioner that submitted the IVA for creditor voting.

As long as you are making your IVA payments as agreed, all of the credit card companies will cease charging you any interest at all, all collections activity will cease, and you can move forward with your life knowing that at the end of the IVA plan, typically five years, you will be out of debt.

But if you’ve been robbing from pot A to pay pot B then it sounds like the IVA was doomed to fail from the beginning. You could always reapply for a new IVA but with the current state of your financial affairs I doubt that a second bite at the IVA apple is going to be any more successful.

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The good news is that your property is in negative equity so there is nothing to sell to generate money for creditors. Bankruptcy in the UK is a much simpler procedure than in the U.S. Even so, I would recommend that you consider getting some help with your bankruptcy forms to make sure you put your best foot forward to sail through your bankruptcy as easily as possible. For UK bankruptcy help, click here. Considering the situation with the home and it owned jointly with your partner, you just need to make extra careful that every is done right on your bankruptcy the first time.

I think with a little professional help this will be an easier process than you would have thought. And Charlie, death is not the answer here. If you follow my advice here you will find relief from this debt very quickly and with some great assistance. Don’t do anything foolish. I want you to stick around my friend.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.


  • Thank you for your answers and encouragement. I am sorry that I did not leave a comment when I first read the reply – I did not see the ‘comment’ bit on the e-mail until just now when I am going through my mails and having a sort out.
    Since your advise, I have contacted someone to help with the bankruptcy forms but have not committed to it yet as I am struggling to find the fee he is asking for the service. I still feel scared and unable to sleep, when I did get some sleep, I always have dreams or nightmare – all about ‘money’ in all shapes or forms. Very difficult times indeed but I am proding on.

    You are right, I shouldn’t think about dead – it is not the way to go – thank you. I would like to let you know how I get on later, if you don’t mind.

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