Helping solve your debt worries

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The Debt Arrangement Scheme helped North Lanarkshire residents repaid over £1.1m in debt in the first half of 2013, according to new figures.

The DAS, which is supported by the Scottish Government, looks set to improve on this performance in this half of the year as new legislation will freeze interest and charges as soon as an application is made through DAS.

DAS is the only debt management scheme supported by the Scottish Government and can consolidate debts into one monthly payment, freeze interest, fees and charges to prevent debts from mounting up and stops creditors using debt enforcement action, safeguarding homes so long as mortgage payments are met.

A Citizens Advice Scotland spokesman said: “Debt is one of the most common issues we see here now. In today’s tough economy many people in North Lanarkshire are experiencing debt, many for the first time. For people in this situation, debt can affect all areas of their life. It is important that people are made aware of the options available to them and don’t feel trapped into taking measures that make the situation even worse.

“If you are in debt, the best thing is to face up to it now and start taking control of it. The good news is that you don’t have to do that alone. Advisers at Cumbernauld CAB see people like you every day, and help them take control of their finances. There are a lot of options to help people out of debt, such as the Debt Arrangement Scheme.”

To learn more about how DAS can help you out of debt, contact Citizens Advice or visit www.helpoutofthehole.org to be referred to your nearest DAS advisor.

Finance minister Fergus Ewing added: “This is a significant amount of debt which the scheme has helped people repay already this year. People from all parts of our society can suddenly be hit by unforeseen circumstances which push them into seemingly uncontrollable levels of debt.”