Step 3 Dealing with your priority debts

Checklist​

Use this simple checklist to make sure you take the right steps to deal with your priority debts.

Some debts are more important than others. These are called priority debts. It is important to use the money you have for your creditors to make agreements to settle these debts first. If you are not sure about how much to offer, contact us for advice.

What are priority debts?

Get some free, independent money advice

If you are reading this and haven’t yet spoken to a money adviser, contact us for advice about all your options.

Explain your situation to your creditors

Even if you haven’t decided how to deal with your priority debts, it’s a good idea to explain to your creditors that you are struggling. Tell them you are taking advice and doing a budget. This may get you some breathing space.

 Hold action on your account sample letter

Work out your budget

Your budget is very important as it will help you work out what you can afford to pay towards your priority debts.

Working out your business budget and Working out your household budget

Pay as much as you can

It is important that you pay as much as possible towards your priority debts. You will usually need to pay enough to cover your ongoing payments and offer a regular payment to reduce the arrears.

Has the creditor taken further action?

Even if a creditor has said they will take further action, such as disconnecting your energy supply or repossessing your home, it is usually not too late to come to an arrangement and stop the action. Contact us for advice.

Can you increase your income?

You may be entitled to benefits, tax credits or Universal Credit that you are not claiming, or there may be other ways of increasing your income.

Benefits, tax credits and Universal Credit

Ways of increasing your business income and Ways of increasing your household income

Have you been treated unfairly?

If you think you have been treated unfairly, you may have reason to complain. You may be able to complain to an ombudsman service, depending on what type of debt you are complaining about. You will usually have to complain to the creditor first. If you want more advice about who you can complain to, contact us for advice.