What is a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

Money Advice Service

Find out more about how a Debt Management Plan works and which debts you can use it for. Then talk to a free debt adviser about whether it’s the best way to pay off or clear your debts.

How a Debt Management Plan works

Use our Debt Health Check to work out a debt management plan and tackle your money troubles, today!

A Debt Management Plan (DMP) allows you to pay off your debts at a rate you can afford.

It’s suitable if you have non-priority debts like credit or store cards, overdrafts and personal loans.

Your DMP provider will help you work out an affordable payment and talk to your creditors.

You make one monthly payment to the DMP provider who then pays your creditors for you.

Which debts can I pay off with a Debt Management Plan?

You can only use a Debt Management Plan for non-priority debts.

These include:

  • overdrafts
  • personal loans
  • bank or building society loans
  • money borrowed from friends or family
  • credit card, store card debts or payday loans
  • catalogue, home credit or in-store credit debts.

Which debts can’t I pay off with a Debt Management Plan?

You can’t use a Debt Management Plan to pay off priority debts.

These include:

  • court fines
  • TV Licence
  • Council Tax
  • gas and electricity bills
  • child support and maintenance
  • Income Tax, National Insurance and VAT
  • mortgage, rent and any loans secured against your home
  • hire purchase agreements, if what you’re buying with them is essential.

Who offers Debt Management Plans?

Many free debt advice organisations can arrange a Debt Management Plan to ensure that all the money you pay into it goes towards paying off your debts.

Need someone to talk to about your finances?

If you’re struggling with money, you can talk to someone today, online, by phone or face to face. We have specially trained advisers who can help you start sorting out your financial problems.

Find free, confidential advice now using our free debt advice locator tool.

This means you could be debt free sooner than you’d hoped.

Free debt advisers give expert advice to hundreds of thousands of people every year and will understand the situation you are in.

They are highly trained and will be able to give you the support you need to manage and reduce your debts.

If you choose a fee-paying provider, you should be aware that all Debt Management Plan providers must be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to ensure they meet agreed standards.

Before you agree to take out a plan with a fee-paying provider, check they have been authorised.

Get free debt advice about a Debt Management Plan

It’s always best to talk things through with an experienced debt adviser before you decide to take out a Debt Management Plan.

This is because the debt solution that is best for you depends on your personal circumstances.

Free debt advisers can help you make the right decisions, meaning you could be debt free sooner than you thought.

A debt adviser will:

  • treat everything you say in confidence
  • give advice about better ways of managing your money
  • never judge you or make you feel bad about your situation
  • suggest ways of dealing with debts that you might not know about
  • always be happy to talk to you, however small or big your problem is
  • check you have applied for all the benefits and entitlements available to you.

You might only need to have one conversation with an experienced debt adviser to make sure that your plan to manage or clear your debts is the right one for you.

If you need more support or don’t know where to start, you’re not alone.

Nearly half of people in debt told us they aren’t sure about the best way to pay off their debts, and that is where a debt adviser can really help you.

Over eight out of ten people who have got debt advice tell us they feel less stressed or anxious and more in control of their life again.

The people that let their debts build up before they seek advice often find:

  • their cards are maxed out
  • no one else will lend to them
  • things have spiralled out of control, and
  • it takes much longer to pay back what they owe.

You can contact a free debt adviser in a way that’s best for you – online, over the phone or face-to-face.

Read our guide on how to Get free debt advice

This article is provided by the Money Advice Service.

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