IVA FAQs

We know that you might have questions you would like answered before you decide to enter an IVA or even during your IVA and we want to make sure you have as much information as possible!

We think we have covered the most common questions but we know that sometimes it can be easier to speak to someone instead. You can always call our team, who will be happy to answer any questions you have on your plan, even if you’re still only considering an IVA.

What are the different debt solutions out there?

  1. What is an IVA?
  2. What is a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?
  3. What is bankruptcy?
  4. What is a Debt Relief Order (DRO)?

Applying for an IVA

  1. Is an IVA right for me?
  2. What are the criteria I need to meet to apply for an IVA?
  3. What will my monthly payments be?
  4. What is the cost of an IVA?
  5. How long does it take to arrange an IVA?
  6. Will I have to close my bank account?
  7. What happens to the interest on my debts?
  8. What happens if I don't qualify for an IVA or my proposal is rejected?
  9. Is my home safe in an IVA?
  10. Can I apply for an IVA if I do not own my home?
  11. What if the opportunity arose for me to buy my own home while I am renting and still in my IVA?
  12. What happens to my secured loans in an IVA?
  13. I own a property overseas, do I need to include this in my IVA?
  14. Can I apply for an IVA if I am self-employed?
  15. Can I still keep my company as a business-owner?
  16. If I enter an IVA, can I still retain a position of public office, eg Company Director?
  17. Can I enter an IVA if I am not in full-time employment or unemployed?
  18. How are joint debts affected?

What if?

  1. What happens if I lose my job during my IVA?
  2. What happens if I am made redundant?
  3. I will be going on maternity leave, will this affect my payment plan?
  4. What if I come into money or get a pay rise during my IVA?
  5. What happens if I am struggling with my monthly payments?

General IVA FAQs

  1. Why do I need an Insolvency Practitioner for an IVA?
  2. Can creditors change their mind once the IVA has been agreed?
  3. Is my proposal guaranteed to pass the creditor review?
  4. Will I have recovered from my unsecured debt in five years?
  5. What happens to my credit rating in an IVA?
  6. Is it true that an IVA will write off the remaining debt that I cannot afford to pay?
  7. What happens when my plan is approaching completion?
  8. When can I expect an update in relation to the progress of my IVA?
  9. What if I receive a “windfall” during my IVA?
  10. What happens if my circumstances change?
  11. How is a redundancy payment treated in an IVA?
  12. I have missed some payments to my IVA. What can I do?
  13. The terms of my IVA require me to attempt to remortgage in the final year of my IVA. What do I need to do?
  14. When will I make my last monthly contribution to the IVA?
  15. What could be delaying the closure of my IVA?
  16. Why would compensation in respect of claims for mis-sold PPI be due to my IVA?
  17. Is PPI still due to my IVA even though my IVA is closed?
  18. Why am I being asked to sign a “Special Agreement” in relation to the decision in James Green V James Patrick Wright decision?
  19. I believe I am entitled to a portion of PPI that has been paid into my IVA. When can I expect to receive my refund?
  20. Will I receive anything when my IVA completes?
  21. How long will it take for my credit file to be updated when my IVA completes?
  22. How long will it take to complete the final administration of my IVA and issue my Completion Certificate?
  23. Will the restriction that was registered against my property be removed when the IVA completes?
  24. How & when will my name be removed from the Personal Insolvency Register?

What are the different debt solutions out there?

  1. What is an IVA?

    An IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement) is a private legal agreement between you and your creditors, where you pay back only what you can realistically afford with the remaining debt being written off. Normally an IVA lasts five to six years. The agreement covers all of your unsecured debts including loans, credit cards, catalogue and store cards, overdrafts etc. Learn more about IVAs.

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  2. What is a Debt Management Plan (DMP)?

    A Debt Management Plan (DMP) is when you reach an agreement with your creditors to repay your debts, in full, at a lower rate that is more affordable to you. This agreement, unlike an IVA, is informal. As it is an informal arrangement, you are not tied into any contract and there is no timescale. You can opt out of the agreement at any time, for example when you are in a better financial situation. It also allows your creditors to control your agreement and is un-protected, unlike an IVA.

    Under a DMP you make reduced payments against your full debts. So, it may take longer to clear your debts. Creditors may also charge interest while in a DMP, interest is frozen when you are in an IVA.

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  3. What is bankruptcy?

    Bankruptcy is a legal process where you are declared unable to pay your creditors. You can petition for your own bankruptcy (Debtor’s Petition) or a creditor(s) can petition (Creditor’s Petition) for your bankruptcy depending on how much you owe them (exceeding £5,000). The costs of bankruptcy can include a £130 adjudicator fee and an additional charge of £550 for the management of your bankruptcy (£115 court fee + £525 in NI). This could mean total costs of up to £680 which you are legally bound to meet yourself that must be paid by you or a third party on your behalf.

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  4. What is a Debt Relief Order (DRO)?

    A Debt Relief Order (DRO) is a cheaper form of bankruptcy. It lasts for 12 months and doesn’t involve the courts and will result in your debts being discharged at the end of that period.

    This is a cheaper and less risky option than bankruptcy, although it does come with similar restrictions to bankruptcy. It’s aimed at those people with lower levels of debt, few assets and small amounts of disposable income. Basically, if you don’t own your own home, are on a low income and have assets worth less than £1000 then you may be eligible for this order.

    If you are unable to pay off your debt in a realistic time then this may be the best option for you.

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  5. Is an IVA right for me?

    We will look at your individual circumstances taking your income, your day-to-day expenditure and debt level into account before suggesting whether an IVA is right for you. We will never suggest an IVA unless we truly believe it is the best option for you and you are happy with your proposal.

    If we do not think it is your best option, we will recommend the best place for you to contact for free money advice on your situation.

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  6. What are the criteria I need to meet to apply for an IVA?

    Usually you will:

    • have unsecured debts of more than £7,000
    • have 2 or more unsecured creditors
    • have a monthly surplus of at least £50

    Aperture views the IVA as a flexible financial plan, which revolves around your needs and puts you back in control.

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  7. What will my monthly payments be?

    The IVA monthly payments should be as much as you can reasonably afford after you have accounted for your living costs and those of your dependants. The amount should be the most that you can afford and that is achievable – whatever you propose should be viable for the duration of the proposed IVA.

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  8. What is the cost of an IVA?

    An IVA can only be prepared for you by a qualified licensed insolvency practitioner, so there are inevitable professional fees. Our fees are paid for from your monthly contributions to creditors, so you do not need to make any other payments besides your monthly IVA contributions.

    We keep IVA costs low by collecting much of the required information from you and using tailor-made automated procedures and specialist administrators to process cases.

    We earn our fees, like other IVA companies, in two ways:

    1. The nominee fee (the fee for putting together the proposal and presenting it to your creditors) for a simple IVA is a fixed fee and will be laid out in your IVA proposal document. If you are a sole trader, partner in a business or have complicated affairs our fees may occasionally be higher – but we will explain the reasons why they are higher than our standard – and this still will not alter the payment you make.
    2. Supervisor fee: (the ongoing fee for managing your plan and liaising with your creditors) This fee will depend on your debt level and circumstances but we will always lay out these fees in your IVA proposal document so that you are aware of all fees ahead of entering your IVA.

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  9. How long does it take to arrange an IVA?

    This depends on how quickly we receive the required information from you. The quicker we receive information from you each time it is requested, the quicker we will be able to move. We want you to get the certainty of an IVA as soon as you can.

    When we receive all the required information from you, we can have a draft proposal created and sent to you for review within 5 working days.

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  10. Will I have to close my bank account?

    If you have debts with your bank, they can take money owed from the account your wages are paid into, whether you can afford it or not. This is called the Right of Offset. Such debts can be in the form of an overdraft, credit card balance or personal loan.

    Therefore we do advise that you arrange a new basic banking facility before starting your IVA, if your current bank holds some of the debt that is to be placed in the IVA. We can help you with this!

    People entering into an IVA usually already have some adverse credit history and find it difficult to open a bank account. In this case you need to open a non-credit bearing basic account.

    As an IVA is a private matter, your new bank/finance provider does not need to know about your IVA. Talk to one of our advisors for more information.

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  11. What happens to the interest on my debts?

    One of the key advantages of an IVA is that it binds your creditors, legally, to freeze all future interest on your debt. This means your debt level will freeze upon approval of your IVA.

    An exception to this rule would be if you are unable to make or keep up with your monthly payments. However, should this happen through no fault of your own, we are often able to agree a variation with your creditors. In some instances, creditors may put forward a modification to the proposal

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  12. What happens if I don't qualify for an IVA or my proposal is rejected?

    If your IVA proposal is not approved, we will speak to your creditors to understand why it rejected and see if there are any changes we can make to the proposal to gain approval.

    If your proposal is still rejected, we will then discuss your alternative options with you.

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  13. Is my home safe in an IVA?

    Yes, your creditors may require you to raise some funds from your property by way of re-mortgage in your final year of the IVA, if there is available equity (the amount left after your mortgage and other secured creditors have been considered).

    If you have less than £5,000 of equity in your home then it is unlikely the equity in your house will be included in your IVA.

    Please read the equity clause within your proposal to find out more or speak to one of our team.

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  14. Can I apply for an IVA if I do not own my home?

    Yes, of course. You can rent a property, be part of a shared ownership scheme or live with parents whilst in an IVA.

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  15. What if the opportunity arose for me to buy my own home while I am renting and still in my IVA?

    If you can secure a mortgage and provided your monthly mortgage payment is no greater than your monthly rent, your Supervisor is unlikely to have any objection to you buying your own home. You must also be able to confirm that the costs of running the new property will not be greater than those of your rented property.

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  16. What happens to my secured loans in an IVA?

    You may have loans other than your mortgage that are secured on your home. The most common will be ‘homeowner loans’ or ‘debt consolidation loans’. Secured loans cannot be included in your IVA and must still be repaid as well as your monthly IVA payments.

    If you do not continue to make payments on your secured loans, your assets (home, car) could be at risk.

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  17. I own a property overseas, do I need to include this in my IVA?

    Yes. All assets owned by you (other than household items) need to be included in the IVA.

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  18. Can I apply for an IVA if I am self-employed?

    Yes, of course. However, IVAs for self-employed people generally require additional income and expenditure documentation, so that we can take your company into account as an asset.

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  19. Can I still keep my company as a business-owner?

    Yes, you can. IVAs have helped thousands of sole traders, partners or company directors remain in business when faced with severe financial problems.

    If you own a company or are a director of a limited company, generally you can retain your position whilst in an IVA, which is not the case should you be declared bankrupt. However, always check your Company’s Articles of Association to determine if there are any restrictions on acting as Director if you enter an IVA.

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  20. If I enter an IVA, can I still retain a position of public office, eg Company Director?

    Unlike bankruptcy, an IVA does not legally restrict your ability to hold positions such as a Justice of the Peace or Governor of a School. However, there could be restrictions in the case of a Company Director depending on what the Company’s Articles of Association states.

    It can also be the case that it is written into some employer’s terms of employment that entering into an IVA results in dismissal, particularly if they worked in the area of insolvency.

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  21. Can I enter an IVA if I am not in full-time employment or unemployed?

    Yes, as long as you have a monthly surplus of at least £50 and meet the other criteria then you can apply for an IVA.

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  22. How are joint debts affected?

    If you have joint debts, then you are both liable for the whole amount of the joint debt, even if only one of you goes into an IVA. An IVA will only deal with your liability. Any joint party will remain responsible for repayment.

    Where there is a possibility that an IVA may adversely affect another person, we will advise the affected party to take independent advice, although they could also apply for an IVA.

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  23. What happens if I lose my job during my IVA?

    Depending on your circumstances, we may be able to offer a short payment break to give you time to regain employment and return to a position of being able to afford your monthly repayments. We will also look at whether we need to adjust the amount of your repayments based on your new income.

    It is worth noting that a payment break does not mean that the missed payments will be removed from your plan. You will need to recoup these costs by either extending your plan, increasing your payments temporarily or making a lump sum payment.

    We understand the impact losing a job can have on your personal life and we will always do our best to find a solution that fits your circumstances, which is why it is important that you call us as soon as you anticipate any changes.

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  24. What happens if I am made redundant?

    We will look at the individual case when it comes to a change in circumstance but usually with redundancies the following process takes place:

    1. We will look at how much you will receive as part of your redundancy package and depending on the size, will decide how much of it (if any) you will give to your creditors to repay your debt, while still allowing you to keep enough of it to continue to make your monthly contributions and expenditures for the next 6 months.
    2. If you become employed again within 6 months, we will review how much of your redundancy you will then need to contribute toward your IVA and what your monthly payments will be going forward.
    3. If you are not employed at the end of 6 months, we will need to re-evaluate your circumstances and affordable monthly payments.

    Please remember that you are still in a legally binding contract with your creditors and the repayment of your debts still stands but we will do everything we can to come to the best solution for you.

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  25. I will be going on maternity leave, will this affect my payment plan?

    It will depend on individual circumstances and your maternity pay entitlement. We can look at reducing your monthly payments on a temporary basis to reflect your drop in salary during your leave.

    We may also be able to offer a payment break from your IVA to allow you to adjust before we reintroduce payments. It is worth noting that you will still owe the same amount of money set out in your IVA, but your payment may be increased temporarily or the length of your plan extended to recoup the missing funds.

    When your maternity leave comes to an end, we may need to assess your circumstances to account for any financial changes to your situation; for example, you may decide to go back to work part-time and your income is then reduced or you may be entitled to child benefits which will see your income increased. Any changes will then need to be reflected in your future payments.

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  26. What if I come into money or get a pay rise during my IVA?

    If you have a windfall during your IVA or your monthly income increases, you will need to let us know so that we can look at how this affects your IVA. If your monthly income increases, it is expected that your payments will eventually increase with it.

    If your windfall is not enough to pay back all monies owed, it is expected that the full amount would be given to your creditors on top of continuing your current monthly payments.

    At the end of every 12 months during your plan, we will conduct an Annual Review to look at any changes and make sure that your payments are still affordable and reflective of your monthly surplus.

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  27. What happens if I am struggling with my monthly payments?

    If you are struggling to make your monthly payments, the first thing to remember is don’t panic! We are here to help and we always have a solution. As soon as you find yourself struggling, it is important that you get in touch with us to see what we can do for you. Remember you are not alone!

    We don’t want any of our clients to be worrying every month about whether they can make their next payment. We will always do our best to make sure your IVA works for both you and your creditors.

    We can take a look at your individual arrangement and any changes in your income and expenditure to see if we can make what is known as a ‘variation’ to your plan. If there have been changes to your income or expenditure or perhaps you have suffered an unexpected expenditure for a car repair or have had to replace a washing machine; we will take this into account and could look at the possibility of a payment break or a change to your monthly payments.

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  28. Why do I need an Insolvency Practitioner for an IVA?

    The role of the IP in your IVA is to manage the payments to your creditors and act as a point of contact for your creditors. They will negotiate the terms of your IVA proposal and work on your behalf to seek approval of your draft.

    Having a qualified professional looking after your IVA takes the worry of having to deal with creditors and, as IPs are industry regulated, are bound by a legal code of practice.

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  29. Can creditors change their mind once the IVA has been agreed?

    No. Once the IVA arrangement has been agreed your creditors are bound by the terms and as long as you maintain your obligations, (i.e. keep up the payments and tell your supervisor if your circumstances change) they cannot take any further action against you or demand a higher repayment from you.

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  30. Is my proposal guaranteed to pass the creditor review?

    In order for your proposal to pass, at least 75% of your creditors by value must vote to approve the draft. The good news is that even if one creditor rejects your proposal, as long as the approving creditors hold 75% of value, the proposal will be accepted. All creditors are then bound to it.

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  31. Will I have recovered from my unsecured debt in five years?

    We can’t guarantee that you will be fully recovered in five years but if you’re not, you will be very close to it. On occasion, it can take an extra year but five years is standard practice for most IVA’s. It is also possible that you could recover earlier if there is the option of a lump sum settlement.

    Changes to your IVA completion date can sometimes come into effect if you are unable to make your monthly contributions for a while due to a change in personal circumstance. It is also important to note that although you will have recovered at the end of your IVA, your credit rating will still be affected for another year.

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  32. What happens to my credit rating in an IVA?

    Whilst waiting for your IVA proposal to be accepted by your creditors, we do advise you continue to make contributions, even if you cannot afford the minimum monthly payment. Failure to do this can seriously affect your credit rating.

    An IVA will show on your credit file for 6 years after the approval of your proposal. When you successfully complete your IVA, we will provide you with a Certificate of Completion which you are able to show anyone you wish to confirm that you have successfully completed your arrangement.

    We will also send a copy of your Certificate of Completion to your creditors so they can update their systems.

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  33. Is it true that an IVA will write off the remaining debt that I cannot afford to pay?

    If you make all your monthly contributions and stick to the terms of your proposal, then you will not be required to pay any more than what was agreed in your IVA. Any remaining debt you had will be written off by your creditors and you will officially have recovered from your unsecured debt!

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  34. What happens when my plan is approaching completion?

    In the final year of your IVA, your creditors may ask that you attempt to release some equity from your home, if you are a homeowner and if there is available equity. If there is equity but you cannot re-mortgage, you may have to pay an additional 12 months’ contributions.

    You can learn more about this in the Equity Clause within your proposal or by calling our team.

    When you do make your final payment, we will then contact your creditors for agreement to close the IVA and issue you with your Certificate of Completion. This process usually takes between 3-6 months.

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  35. When can I expect an update in relation to the progress of my IVA?

    Within two months of the anniversary of the date on which your IVA was approved, we are required by law to compile and issue a report to both you and your creditors to show how the arrangement is progressing. The Annual Progress Report is a standard document and – in addition to commenting on your conduct and compliance in respect of the IVA’s terms and enclosing a copy of your most recent income and expenditure review – it will also detail any and all monies received into your IVA in the reporting period (and since its approval). It will also outline what has been done with those funds.

    As with all IVAs, the funds will typically have been used to discharge the fees and costs associated with the set up and approval of the IVA in the first instance but the report will also detail any payments (Distributions) made to your creditors. As with most IVAs, distributions will generally commence in the second year of the IVA and Aperture will – where possible – pay creditors on a monthly basis by BACS from that point on.

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  36. What if I receive a “windfall” during my IVA?

    Windfalls (or “After acquired property” as it may be known within an IVA) typically arise where you receive or become entitled to an asset during the course of your IVA. After acquired property relates to a wide range of potential assets which include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • Lottery wins;
    • Gambling wins;
    • Inheritance; and
    • Personal injury claims

    In some cases, if the value of the asset is less than £500, you can retain it in full but in others any and all windfalls would be due to the IVA (it depends on the terms and conditions of your specific IVA). The key thing to remember as regards windfalls, is that you have a duty to contact us and make us aware of them. Any failure to do that may bring about the failure of your IVA so it is extremely important that you make us aware of any such assets as soon as possible.

    It should also be understood that the payment of a windfall into an IVA will not bring about a reduction in the IVA’s duration or alter your payments unless the windfall sum is sufficient to repay your debts in full (and discharge the fees and costs associated with the IVA) or unless we can assist you to negotiate an early settlement of the IVA through a renegotiation of the terms (known as a “variation”).

    If you do receive or do become entitled to an asset during the course of your IVA, please contact our Customer Service Team who will ensure that you are given the correct advice having regard to the specifics of your case.

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  37. What happens if my circumstances change?

    If there is any change to your circumstances that will affect your ability to manage your payments to the IVA (or any other obligation), you should let us know right away. The sooner we know about a problem, the sooner that we can assist you to resolve it and a solution of some sort is achievable in the vast majority of cases. The important thing to remember is that we are here to assist you and so you shouldn’t hesitate to get in touch.

    The Supervisor will have some discretions available to him to potentially reduce your payments, grant payment breaks and extend the term of your IVA and so almost every problem has a remedy. If the change in circumstances is likely to have a long term effect, then you may need us to assist you in trying to renegotiate the terms of your arrangement with your creditors through a formal “Variation” to the terms.

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  38. How is a redundancy payment treated in an IVA?

    The terms and conditions of most IVAs require you to disclose any redundancy payment that you may receive to your Supervisor. They also stipulate that you are entitled to retain a maximum sum equivalent to 6 months’ net take home pay with any surplus above that amount being due to your arrangement on the basis that it is hoped that you can secure alternative employment within that time period. In the event that you secure employment in a shorter time frame, please note that the balance of any funds you retained would then also fall due to the IVA.

    Please also note that if you received a significant redundancy package, you might want to consider trying to introduce a lump sum in an effort to settle your IVA early. If that is an option that you wish to discuss, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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  39. I have missed some payments to my IVA. What can I do?

    If you have missed some payments to the IVA, the most important thing to do is get in touch with our IVA Support Team on 03339 397922. That team specialises in helping people who begin to struggle with their payments for whatever reason and will work with you to resolve any issues and agree a realistic way forward. Remember, we are here to help and support you and a resolution is only a phone call or email away.

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  40. The terms of my IVA require me to attempt to remortgage in the final year of my IVA. What do I need to do?

    An IVA will typically allow you to keep your home on the basis that – instead of selling it – you attempt to release equity (the difference between the value of your home and the amount you have left to pay on your mortgage) for the benefit of the creditors. Your IVA proposal document will detail the specifics of this requirement but in most cases you are obliged to attempt to release equity 6 months prior to the anticipated end date of your IVA.

    The first step in that process is to assess the value of your equitable interest. To do that, the Supervisor of your IVA will need you to provide him with:

    • A current property valuation (this will advise the Supervisor of the current value of your property and can be obtained from an estate agent or online);
    • A current mortgage redemption statement (this will advise the Supervisor of the amount that you still have to pay in respect of your mortgage and is available on request from your mortgage provider); and
    • If you have any other loans or charges secured against your property, you will also need to provide a redemption statement for those (this will advise the Supervisor of the amount you still have to pay in respect of those loans and is available from the lenders)

    Once the Supervisor is in receipt of that information, he will calculate the value of your equitable interest and – depending on how much is available – will then advise you as to what action (if any) you need to take. In general, there are two possible outcomes:

    1. If your equitable interest is determined to be £5,000 or greater, you will need to take some independent financial advice and try to remortgage. If the financial advisor can secure a suitable loan product for you, you will need to provide Aperture with the details of the loan and obtain our consent to avail of the loan. The loan can then be progressed and the full value of your share of the loan should be paid directly to us by the lender; or
    2. If your equitable interest is determined to be less than £5,000, you will not be required to do anything – your equitable interest will be excluded as an asset of your IVA on account of the fact that it has a minimal value.

    In the event that your equitable interest is deteremined to be £5,000 or greater but you are unable to secure a remortgage or secured loan product, you will be obliged to either:

    • offer a third-party lump sum equivalent to 85% of the value of your interest in the property; or
    • make 12 additional monthly contributions (with the aggregate sum due to be to the IVA paid being limited to 85% of the value of your interest in the property).

    This obligation is a significant and important one so if you have any queries or concerns about it please get in touch with us and we will be happy to help.

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  41. When will I make my last monthly contribution to the IVA?

    Most IVAs anticipate that contributions will be made for a period of 60 months with a possible additional 12 months’ payments being required if you are a homeowner. As such, your final payment will normally fall due 5 or 6 years after your proposal was approved. However, it is not uncommon for unforeseen changes in an individual’s circumstances to arise during the course of an IVA and – to deal with those changes – you may need to seek alterations to your payment schedule which may mean that the terms of your IVA is extended. Similarly, if you miss payments to your arrangement or need more time to fulfil other obligations under your IVA, then the term of the arrangement might also change.

    The Supervisor of your IVA is required to issue an annual progress report to you and your creditors within two months of the anniversary date of the approval of your arrangement – that report will help you understand how the arrangement is progressing and whether there are any issues that need attention so please ensure that you read those reports each year.

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  42. What could be delaying the closure of my IVA?

    If you think that your IVA should be completed and it has not, please just get in touch and we will review your case and provide you with an update. In broad terms, our ability to close an arrangement will be impacted by an outstanding obligation that needs to be addressed. The most common obligations that arise will typically relate to the following:

    • An outstanding Income and Expenditure review;
    • An outstanding requirement in relation to any obligation to release equity;
    • An outstanding amount due to the IVA in respect of additional income;
    • Unresolved arrears that accrued in respect of missed payments during the IVA; and
    • An outstanding matter in relation to investigations into mis-sold Payment Protection Insurance (PPI).

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  43. Why would compensation in respect of claims for mis-sold PPI be due to my IVA?

    Firstly, the agreed terms of your IVA may state that PPI or similar claims are considered to be assets of your arrangement. In broad terms, most IVAs approved since 2012 will include such a term which will explicitly refer to PPI. On older cases, the standard terms and conditions of the IVA will typically include what is called an “All Assets Clause” which is a common term that essentially states that all assets – including PPI – will be an asset of the IVA unless creditors agreed to their exclusion from the arrangement. It should also be noted that in 2013 Aperture sought to vary the terms of all arrangements under our Supervision to clarify the treatment of PPI, ensure that it no longer impacted our ability to bring an IVA to a successful conclusion where a client was cooperating with their PPI obligations and to allow our clients to benefit from the statutory interest element of any successful PPI claim (net of costs). Any successful PPI claims paid into your IVA will enable you to pay back more of your debt which is in keeping with the arrangement’s two key purposes – 1) to ensure that your level of debt was frozen and afford you protection from bankruptcy or any other recovery action and 2) to enable creditors to receive the best possible return having regard to your circumstances.

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  44. Is PPI still due to my IVA even though my IVA is closed?

    In 2013 Aperture sought to vary the terms of all arrangements under our Supervision to clarify the treatment of PPI, ensure that it no longer impacted his ability to bring an IVA to a successful conclusion where a client was cooperating with their PPI obligations and to allow his clients to benefit from the statutory interest element of any successful PPI claim (net of costs). The vast majority of Aperture clients went through that process and, in those cases, PPI will continue to be due to the IVA after the IVA closed. It should be understood that the Supervisor only agreed to close those IVAs on that understanding.

    In a minority of cases, the variation to deal with PPI was rejected and so in those cases the Supervisor has had to have regard to the specific terms of those IVAs in determining how PPI should be treated. In broad terms, most IVAs approved since 2012 will include a term which will explicitly refer to PPI as an asset of the IVA. On older cases, the standard terms and conditions of the IVA will typically include what is called an “All Assets Clause” which is a common term that essentially states that all assets – including PPI – will be an asset of the IVA unless creditors agreed to their exclusion from the arrangement. On those basis’, the Supervisor is of the view that PPI is an asset of an IVA both during the IVA and after it has completed.

    However, the impact of the closure of an IVA on such cases is a question that was considered by the Court of Appeal in May & November 2016 in the case of James Green v James Patrick Wright and the outcome of that appeal is now expected in early 2017. Until the detail of that judgement is known, Aperture cannot progress the closure of any case that did not go through the aforementioned variation process unless a client is willing to sign a “Special Agreement” to clarify that PPI monies will constitute an asset of the IVA after closure.

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  45. Why am I being asked to sign a “Special Agreement” in relation to the decision in James Green V James Patrick Wright decision?

    The decision in James Green v James Patrick Wright was subject to an appeal heard on 15 November 2016. The outcome of that appeal is not likely to be known until early 2017 and accordingly there is a degree of uncertainty across the industry at present as to what the impact of that appeal decision will be and is impacting our ability to issue a Final Report in respect of some IVAs. One way of addressing that uncertainty is for you to enter into a “Special Agreement” with the Supervisor that clarifies that any compensation in respect of mis-sold Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) claims that may be received after the completion of your IVA will constitute an asset of the arrangement. By entering into such an agreement, Aperture will be able to progress the closure of the IVA. However, you are not obliged to enter into such an agreement and are entitled to wait on the outcome of the appeal to be known albeit that will inevitably delay the closure of your IVA.

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  46. I believe I am entitled to a portion of PPI that has been paid into my IVA. When can I expect to receive my refund?

    Most of the cases under Aperture’s Supervision were put through a variation process in 2013 whereby creditors – amongst other things – agreed that clients could benefit from the statutory interest element of any PPI claim net of costs. In that scenario, where a lender has written to a client and advised them that a PPI mis-selling claim has been successful, those funds will typically be paid direct to the claims management company that was engaged by the client and will then be put through a reconciliation process to ensure that the correct sum has been paid in respect of the correct claimant before being paid into your IVA.

    Given the high volume of PPI payments that claims management companies are dealing with and the corresponding volume that is then forwarded to Aperture for allocation to the correct account, the reconciliation process can take up to 60 days to complete. As such, whilst you may be aware of the fact that a PPI payment has been made to your IVA, please appreciate that Aperture may not yet be in receipt of the funds and so he cannot process any refund that may be due to you. Furthermore, it should be understood that, in an effort to minimise the costs to the arrangement, the Supervisor intends to process your refund once all PPI matters have been investigated.

    If you are unsure as to the status of your claims’ investigation, please be advised that your Claims’ management company is best positioned to advise you. If Sleater Hayward Law (SHL) are acting on your behalf, please call them on 01254 271980 to speak to one of their advisors or if Claims Advisory Service (CAS) are acting for you please dial 0800 599203. Alternatively, if you engaged a different claims management company, please contact them directly for an update.

    Please be assured that Aperture is committed to processing any refund due to you in as short a timeframe as possible and has already refunded in excess of £4.6 million to clients so far.

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  47. Will I receive anything when my IVA completes?

    When the Supervisor of the IVA is satisfied that all obligations have been fulfilled, we will issue a Final Report together with a Completion Certificate. A copy of that report will be sent to you, each of your creditors and the Insolvency Service advising that the IVA is now at an end.

    The Final Report will include information regarding all of the funds received into the IVA and what has been done with those monies. It will also show how much of your debt has been repaid (the dividend) and how much has been written-off by your creditors.

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  48. How long will it take for my credit file to be updated when my IVA completes?

    Aperture do not have any remit to update your credit file – that responsibility rests with your creditors and they will typically take steps to update your credit file data around 8 weeks after we issue your Final Report. Please visit the Equifax, Experian and Call Credit websites for more information on your credit file and actions that you can take to ensure that the information held is accurate and up to date. Please also ensure that you keep a copy of your IVA Final Report and Completion Certificate safe as you may need it to evidence that the IVA has come to a successful conclusion.

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  49. How long will it take to complete the final administration of my IVA and issue my Completion Certificate?

    We are able to bring most IVAs to a conclusion within 3 months of all obligations having been fulfilled and your IVA having been assigned for closure. As such, it is important that you ensure that you have complied with all agreed terms and conditions and – if you have any doubt in that regard – please review your annual reports (as they will highlight any matters that need attention) or get in touch with us and we will talk you through what action you need to take (if any).

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  50. Will the restriction that was registered against my property be removed when the IVA completes?

    Yes. We will file the necessary statutory form at Land Registry within two weeks of the Final Report being sent to you, your creditors and the Insolvency Service.

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  51. How & when will my name be removed from the Personal Insolvency Register?

    The Personal Insolvency Register is administered by the Insolvency Service or for the Northern Ireland Insolvency Service. We will send them a copy of our Final Report confirming the completion of the IVA and they endeavour to update the register within three months of being notified of the completion although it is often updated much sooner than that.

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I&E FAQs

We know that filling out your Income & Expenditure (I &E) form can be a little daunting at times, but we have compiled a comprehensive list of FAQs that we think should help guide you through and make the process as simple and easy as possible!

  1. What is an income and expenditure review?

    The income and expenditure review is simply an annual review of your income and outgoings. The review is typically a standard requirement in all consumer IVAs and the purpose of the review is to assess whether your current monthly contribution to your IVA continues to be affordable. We know that this annual review is a process that our clients tend to worry about;  in the vast majority of cases however, an individual’s income and expenditure does not change significantly from year to year and accordingly payments will simply continue at the same rate as was originally agreed.

    If your financial position has improved considerably, the terms of the IVA will require you to share any improvement with your creditors – but you will still enjoy some of the benefit from any improvement in your circumstances.

    In the event that your financial position has deteriorated, we will  discuss the options that are available to you, having regard to your specific circumstances.

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  2. I am self-employed so how do I provide my income and expenditure?

    With regard to your income, you should provide us with a copy of your latest accounts or self-assessment tax return together along with any other information that you believe confirms your income.

    In terms of expenditure, you need to provide documentary evidence in respect of any unexpected expenditure or to support any significant increases in areas of expenditure that may have arisen since your proposal was approved. If your income and expenditure has changed significantly in any way, it is important that you explain that to us and provide us with as much information as possible in order that we can offer you the best possible support and service.

    As an aside, self-employed individuals should also ensure that their tax affairs (payments and filings) are up to date as a failure to do that might delay HM Revenue & Customs’ ability to claim in your IVA (which will delay the closure of your case) or might see it demand the failure of your IVA for non-compliance.

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  3. What paperwork do you need to complete the review?

    In order to conduct the review, we require the following:

    Proof of Income

    • For employed individuals – we require copies of your payslips for the last 12 months, along with a copy of your latest P60 form.
    • Other income – proof of entitlement of any pensions or benefits (e.g. if you are entitled to tax credits or job-seekers allowance etc.)
    • For self-employed individuals – your annual accounts together with any other information that you consider evidences your income.

    Proof of Expenditure

    If any of your household expenditure has increased significantly, please send supporting documentation so that we can account for that during the review.  This includes (but is not limited to):

    • Significant one-off costs (e.g. car repairs, boiler repairs and household maintenance, etc.)
    • Significant increases in utilities (eg council tax, electricity, gas, water rates)
    • Mortgage – please send us correspondence from your mortgage provider to evidence any increase in payments
    • Rent – please send us a copy of your tenancy agreement.

    If you do not have recent bills, please send a copy of your last 3 months’ bank statements to evidence the payments.

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  4. I get paid weekly – do I need to send you 52 payslips?

    Ideally, you need to provide us with all payslips so that we can carry out a full review of your income and circumstances. However, if you do not have them all, we can accept copies of your bank statements for any missing periods or may be able to do a review based on the information contained in your P60 together with any payslips you can provide.

    Ultimately, the more information that you can provide us with the better and we would suggest that you take steps to keep your payslips and other income and expenditure related information safe and at hand during the IVA

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  5. Why is my P60 not sufficient on its own?

    Your P60 covers your earnings during a particular tax year which will run from April to March each year. The annual review of your income and expenditure will look at the 12 month period that has elapsed since your IVA was approved, so if your IVA was approved in any month other than April the P60 will not relate to the full period under review.

    Furthermore, the P60 will not detail your basic salary/wage or if any additional hours or bonus was earned within that time. As such, reliance on the P60 alone might not tell the full story of your income and might suggest that you can afford to increase your payments when that is not in fact affordable.

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  6. What is the best way to send the required documents to you?

    The quickest and safest way for you to send your documents to us is via email to ivareview@aperture.uk.com. Email ensures that nothing can get lost in the post and you would get an instant confirmation letting you know that we have your documentation.

    If you do need to post documentation to us, please ensure that you only provide copies as any and all documentation is shredded once it has been received and reviewed. Our postal address is as follows and please mark any annual review documentation for the attention of the Income and Expenditure Review Team:

    Aperture

    Water’s Edge,

    Clarendon Dock,

    Belfast

    BT1 3BH

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  7. Have you received the documents I sent you to complete the review?

    Upon receipt of your documentation, we will update your case records and confirm safe receipt text message. As such, it is very important that you ensure that we hold the correct contact details for you particularly your mobile telephone number and email address. If you’re unsure as to whether we hold the correct details, please just drop a quick email to our Customer Services Team (ivacustomerservices@aperture.uk.com ) with the correct information and we will update your case.

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  8. Do I need to send original documentation?

    It is very important that you only provide us with a copy of documentation as any and all documentation will be shredded once the review has been completed – this approach also ensures that important documentation does not get lost in the post.

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  9. How long will the review take from receipt of my documents?

    We seek to conduct and communicate the outcome of your review within six weeks of having received all of the necessary information although, in the vast majority of cases, we can communicate the outcome much quicker.

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  10. What happens if I earned additional income during my IVA?

    The specific terms of your IVA on additional income will be detailed in your IVA documentation and so please review that paperwork if you have any doubt about the requirement, or are unsure if it is a term that applies to your specific case. However, please note that it is a very common clause and the standard terms and conditions within the vast majority of IVAs (particularly those approved since May 2010) state as follows:

    Where you are employed, you must report any overtime, bonus, commission or similar to the Supervisor if not included in the original surplus calculation, where the sum exceeds 10% of your normal take home pay. Disclosure to the Supervisor must be made within 14 days of receipt and 50% of the amount (over and above the 10%) shall be paid to the Supervisor within 14 days of the disclosure”.

    This means that you can earn up to 10% more than your original wage before you would be asked to pay anything more into the arrangement. You would also be allowed to keep half (50%) of anything earned over that 10%. The remaining amount would then be due into your arrangement. Effectively this means that it is a 55/45 split in your favor and ensures that you can enjoy the majority share of any additional income that you earn throughout the IVA whilst also ensuring that you are repaying a bigger proportion of your debt.

    Ultimately, we want to ensure that the outcome of the review is fair and accurate and so it is important that you provide me with as much information as possible to enable me to properly assess your circumstances.

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  11. Can I pay any additional income due to the IVA over a few months?

    We encourage clients to be proactive as regards additional income earned and many of our clients monitor this on a monthly basis and pay any sums due each month either by debit card or by way of a bank transfer.

    However, we understand that sometimes a client may need to agree a plan to address any additional income that is due to the IVA and depending on the specifics of your IVA and what stage you are at, we may be able to agree either an increase to your IVA payment and/or an extension to the IVA term to enable you to pay the sum due. If you’ve earned additional income but are struggling to pay over the portion that is due to your arrangement, just get in touch with us and we will agree a solution. Remember, it’s best to deal with these type of issues as they arise as we don’t want it to delay the closure of your IVA when you get to the end.

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  12. I’m really struggling and think my payments should come down.

    The most important point to remember here is that we are here to support you and so if you are struggling, it is very important that you get in touch with us as soon as possible. In the vast majority of cases, a solution to a problem can be found and we have a number of powers and discretions available to us that we use on a daily basis to support our clients.

    If you have suffered a change in circumstances that has had a very significant impact on your IVA payment, it may be necessary for us to assist you in proposing a variation to the terms of your arrangement. That process is a mechanism through which you can try to renegotiate the terms of your IVA with your creditors and we have a team of expert advisors who specialise in that work. For a variation to be successful, your creditors need to be agreeable to any changes and our team will work with you and your creditors to try and secure revised terms that will enable the IVA to continue.

    A variation is a very useful tool but should only be used where all other options have been explored. If you are finding it difficult to maintain your payments, you should use your annual review as an opportunity to reconsider your budget. You may be able to bring about savings in your expenditure by switching utilities providers to get a better rate or cancelling unwanted or unnecessary subscriptions.

    Some internet comparison websites could help with the above and more. If you give us a call or drop us an email our team will be more than willing to assist you.

    Tel: 03339 397920

    Email: ivareview@aperture.uk.com

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  13. I’m separated from my partner. Do we need to complete separate forms?

    We appreciate that the breakdown of a relationship is an extremely difficult issue to deal with and that it can potentially impact an IVA that was agreed by creditors on the basis of a joint income and expenditure budget. That said, the extent to which such a development impacts the arrangement can differ from case to case. If each party is willing to work together for their mutually benefit,  bringing the IVAs to a successful conclusion, then one income and expenditure form would be best.

    However if, for whatever reason, each party wishes to provide a separate budget, we can adapt our approach and conduct the review on that basis. Regardless of the approach, it is very important that you provide enough evidence and information for both your income and expenditure to enable the Supervisor to fully understand your financial position so that that he can conduct the review accurately and fairly.

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  14. Nothing has changed since last year’s review so why do I have to complete the form again?

    Firstly, your creditors require us to conduct the review and so even though nothing has changed, you still need to comply with that term of the IVA to ensure that we can report that the IVA is progressing well and has every prospect of being fully implemented.

    Secondly, the expenditure guidelines produced by the StepChange Debt Charity (which creditors use to assess what constitutes reasonable expenditure and to which we are obliged to have regard when carrying out our review) are updated each year and it is important that we can ensure that your IVA remains affordable for you.

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  15. My payments finish in a few months. Do I need to complete this form?

    Yes, albeit the purpose of the final year review is slightly different from that of other reviews. The final year review is not concerned with assessing the affordability of future payments but rather is focused on ensuring that any additional income you may have earned in the final year is properly accounted for before the IVA completes.

    Failure to provide the information in a timely fashion can delay our ability to bring your IVA to a close and so it is very important that you comply with the request for information when you receive it.

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  16. Can you post me a form and a pre-paid envelope to return the documents?

    Yes. We can send you out a prepaid envelope to return documents but again we would prefer that you forward us the documents via email to the following address: ivareview@aperture.uk.com. Receipt by email will enable us to complete your review much quicker and avoids any risk of documentation getting lost in the post.

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  17. I received a Notice of Breach for not complying with the terms of my IVA – what do I need to do?

    The terms of all IVAs require the Supervisor to issue a Notice of Breach if a client fails to cooperate or fulfill any obligation associated with the IVA. A Notice of Breach can arise in many circumstances with the most common relating to non-payment of monthly contributions due to the IVA, and failure to comply with the annual review process.

    If you receive a Notice of Breach or an Annual Report that states you are in breach of the terms of your IVA, it is extremely important that you contact us to assist you in resolving any issues. Remember, we are here to help and support you and we want your IVA to reach a successful conclusion every bit as much as you do.

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PPI FAQS

We know that you may have questions around PPI and your statutory interest refund, so we have collated a few of the most commonly asked questions below.

Of course, we understand that you may still want to speak to a member of our team – so feel free to call us and we would be happy to discuss further with you.

  1. Why would PPI be due to my IVA?

    Firstly, the agreed terms of your IVA may state that PPI or similar claims are considered to be assets of your arrangement. In broad terms, most IVAs approved since 2012 will include such a term which will explicitly refer to PPI. On older cases, the standard terms and conditions of the IVA will typically include what is called an “All Assets Clause” which is a common term that essentially states that all assets – including PPI – will be an asset of the IVA unless creditors agreed to their exclusion from the arrangement.

    It should also be noted that in 2013 the Supervisor of your IVA sought to vary the terms of all arrangements under his Supervision to clarify the treatment of PPI, ensure that it no longer impacted his ability to bring an IVA to a successful conclusion where a client was cooperating with their PPI obligations and to allow his clients to benefit from the statutory interest element of any successful PPI claim (net of costs).

    Any successful PPI claims paid into your IVA will enable you to pay back more of your debt which is in keeping with the arrangement’s two key purposes:

    1) to ensure that your level of debt was frozen and afford you protection from bankruptcy or any other recovery action

    2) to enable creditors to receive the best possible return having regard to your circumstances.

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  2. Is PPI still due to my IVA even though my IVA is closed?

    In 2013 the Supervisor of your IVA sought to vary the terms of all arrangements under his Supervision to clarify the treatment of PPI, ensure that it no longer impacted his ability to bring an IVA to a successful conclusion where a client was cooperating with their PPI obligations and to allow his clients to benefit from the statutory interest element of any successful PPI claim (net of costs). The vast majority of Aperture clients went through that process and, in those case, PPI will undoubtedly continue to be due to the IVA after the IVA closed. It should be understood that the Supervisor only agreed to close those IVAs on that understanding.

    In a minority of cases, the variation to deal with PPI was rejected and so in those cases the Supervisor has had to have regard to the specific terms of those IVAs in determining how PPI should be treated. In broad terms, most IVAs approved since 2012 will include a term which will explicitly refer to PPI as an asset of the IVA. On older cases, the standard terms and conditions of the IVA will typically include what is called an “All Assets Clause” which is a common term that essentially states that all assets – including PPI – will be an asset of the IVA unless creditors agreed to their exclusion from the arrangement. On those basis’, the Supervisor is of the view that PPI is an asset of an IVA both during the IVA and after it has completed.

    However, the impact of the closure of an IVA on such cases is a question that was to be considered by the Court of Appeal in May 2016 but which has now been delayed until November and the Supervisor awaits that decision albeit shares the view of many across the industry that the court will advise that PPI will be due to the IVA even after closure.

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  3. I’ve received a letter from my Supervisor asking me to sign a letter because of a court decision in the case of James Green v James Wright. Do I have to sign it?

    The court’s decision in the case of James Green v James Wright concerns the treatment of PPI claims where an IVA has been closed by the Supervisor. It is a decision that only has a potential relevance to a small number of Aperture cases and if you have received a letter from your Supervisor regarding it then your IVA is one of those potentially affected.

    In simple terms, the court’s initial decision has created some uncertainty across the industry as regards how PPI claims are to be dealt with where a Supervisor issues a final report bringing the IVA to an end and PPI funds are then awarded to an individual who had been subject to an IVA. The decision has been appealed by the Supervisor of Mr Wright’s IVA and that appeal was initially to be heard in May 2016. However, the appeal has now been put back until November 2016 and therefore the exact impact (if any) of that decision on your IVA will not be known until then at the earliest.

    The impact of this delay is that your Supervisor can now only close your IVA before November 2016 if you are willing to sign an agreement which essentially confirms that PPI monies will be due to the IVA despite the closure of your IVA. The letter you have been sent asks you to sign and return such an agreement and, upon receipt of it, the Supervisor will be able to issue his completion report and certificate in respect of your IVA. until the outcome of the appeal is known unless you are willing to agree that. The Supervisor appreciates that some clients may prefer to wait on the outcome of the appeal but would stress that he cannot complete their IVA until then if they chose that course of action.

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  4. I believe I am entitled to a portion of PPI that has been paid into my IVA. When can I expect to receive my refund?

    Most of the cases under Aperture’s Supervision were put through a variation process in 2013 whereby creditors – amongst other things – agreed that clients could benefit from the statutory interest element of any PPI claim net of costs. In that scenario, where a lender has written to a client and advised them that a PPI mis-selling claim has been successful, those funds will typically be paid direct to the claims management company that were engaged by the client and will then be put through a reconciliation process to ensure that the correct sum has been paid in respect of the correct claimant before being paid into your IVA.

    Given the high volume of PPI payments that claims management companies are dealing with and the corresponding volume that is then forwarded to Aperture for allocation to the correct account, the reconciliation process can take up to 60 days to complete. As such, whilst you may be aware of the fact that a PPI payment has been made to your IVA, please appreciate that your Supervisor may not yet be in receipt of the funds and so he cannot process any refund that may be due to you. Furthermore, it should be understood that, in an effort to minimise the costs to the arrangement, the Supervisor intends to process your refund once all PPI matters have been investigated.

    If you are unsure as to the status of your claims’ investigation, please be advised that your Claims’ management company is best positioned to advise you. If Sleater Hayward Law (SHL) are acting on your behalf, please press 1 to speak to one of their advisors or if Claims Advisory Service (CAS) are acting for you please press 2. Alternatively, if you engaged a different claims management company, please contact them directly for an update.

    Please be assured that your Supervisor is committed to processing any refund due to you in as short a timeframe as possible and has already refunded in excess of £4.6 million to clients so far.

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