Withdrawing from debt review is easy if your financial situation has changed significantly to the better or you only have your bond left to pay, New guidelines were issued as part of the National Credit Amendment Act (NCAA) around when a person may exit debt review.

Previously you could exit debt review only once you had paid all your debts in full and had received a clearance certificate. This also included your home loan, if it had formed part of the debt review application.

A significant change is that you can now exit debt review even if your bond is not fully settled, although you would have to demonstrate that you have the financial ability to meet those future bond repayments – or any other long-term agreement. There must also be no outstanding payments on the bond and all your other outstanding debt must have been settled. This includes vehicle finance, which is not considered a long-term credit agreement and if it forms part of the debt review re-arrangement order, it has to be paid up in full before a clearance certificate is issued.

You can also apply to be removed from debt review if you have had a significant change in your income. If your financial situation has improved to the extent that you are able to meet your financial obligations as they were prior to you applying for debt review, and if you have not fallen behind on your debt review payments, you can apply to the courts to consider your withdrawal from debt review.

How to withdraw

It’s important to note that a debt counsellor does not have statutory powers to terminate or withdraw the debt review process. The consumer has to go to court to obtain this permission.

You would have to approach the court to rescind the order or to apply for an order which declares that you are no longer over-indebted. Once the order has been issued, you must receive a clearance certificate from the debt counsellor within seven days. Upon receipt of the order, a debt counsellor will notify the credit providers of the withdrawal by means of Form 17W.

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