Help - so stressed ...
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Help - so stressed over TD

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I’m wondering if anyone can answer a few questions for me regarding my TD as it’s causing me severe stress and anxiety (actually worse than it was before I entered the TD).

I registered and agreed to the TD in July 2023 via Trust Deed Scotland, my TD is with Harper McDermott and since signing the forms I’ve had no further information or contact from them…

I feel like I was mis-sold and almost pressured into entering the TD, they made it sound like an amazing easy process and like you’d have tonnes of support throughout the entire 4 years 

So I am self employed, my income changes frequently. Since signing the TD 8 months or so ago my income has almost doubled so I’ve emailed them to let them know my circumstances have changed (and am yet to hear back). It’s just myself and my partner (and our dog, no kids). My partner doesn’t earn a lot at the moment so I often cover more bills than him or I cover the food shop and any leisurely activities (going out for food, date nights etc) most months

My worry is, like I said I’m self employed so as well as my income changing frequently, I would also like to have some emergency savings because there’s so many things that could happen with self employment (my van could break down, I could lose clients, if I take a week off work I don’t get paid, etc) - am I allowed to save while in a trust deed? Some posts on here have made me think you’re not and every single extra penny you have after expenses is to go to the TD.

Also, are you allowed to go on holiday while in a TD? As I have one booked for the end of this year for my partners 30th which I’m paying monthly - but after reading posts on here I feel like I’m going to get in some sort of trouble for having a holiday booked? 

As an example, my current payment is just over £100 per month, with my current earning and doing a new income & expenditure form, if I am left with £800 per month disposable income (if I do no saving for emergencies) for example, are they able to ask for the full £800 per month? (This would be very unfair in my opinion, I work hard for my money and to earn more and I’m not even able to save or go on holiday?)

My total debt is just over £8,000, so far I’ve paid about £900, so if they were to take £800 per month then the debt would be cleared within a year roughly - does that mean that the TD would end after the year?

Sorry, lots of questions as I’m very confused and feel like I’ve had basically nothing explained to me over the course of this and it’s causing me immense stress. I already suffer with alopecia due to stress and this is making it 100x worse.


thanks in advance for any help

Kevin Mapstone
Member Admin
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 4237

Hi.  It must be very stressful to have this all running around in your head and not getting a response from your Trustee firm.  Keep on at them, as only they can put your mind at rest on this.

It is hard to give exact advice , not knowing the details of the budget you had worked out with them, however in general terms:

- if someone's income varies a lot then a trustee would usually try to find an average figure, rather than continually increasing/decreasing your contribution amount.  You would then be expected to keep money aside in the better months to help subsidise your living costs in the poorer months.

- If you are persistently earning more than the average income then it is likely that your contribution would have to be increased.  It may be possible for your trustee to be a little more generous in the budget for your outgoings if it was very tight to start with, however, offsetting some of the increase.

- Holidays would fall under the category of leisure expenditure (in the "other" category n the common financial statement).  They are certainly allowed but usually only if your spending is not exceeding the guidelines set down for that particular area of expenditure.  

In a Trust Deed, if it turns out that you can afford to then you don't only pay the total of your debt back - you would also end up having to cover the fees and outlays of your trustee as well as interest potentially.  If you can afford £800pm then I'm afraid a Trust Deed may not have been the right choice for you as it will work out quite expensive.  Instead  you may have been better off with a Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS) as you then only pay what you owe and no more.  Best to discuss this with your Trustee - they may be willing to terminate the Trust Deed and allow you to set up a DAS instead if it looks more appropriate after all.

I hope that's helpful.  Please let us know how you get on.

Scottish Debt Solutions Expert - Ask me for help setting up a Scottish Trust Deed or Debt Arrangement Scheme plan.