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Debt Relief Orders

Debt Relief Orders are designed for people with a relatively low level of debt and limited assets. They are processed by the Insolvency Service for a fee of £90. If you qualify for a DRO, interest on your debt will be frozen for 12 months and then written off if there has been no change in your circumstances. The order will be recorded on your credit history for 6 years. In order to be eligible you must meet the following criteria:

  • You must have total debt of less than £20,000 in Northern Ireland (£20,000 in England & Wales).
  • You own less than £300 worth of assets (and a car valued no more than £1,000).
  • You have less than £50 of disposable income each month.
  • You cannot be a homeowner, even if your property is in negative equity.




  • A Debt Relief Order is a formal solution so creditors cannot chase for payments.


  • All debts in a DRO are cleared after one year.


  • During the 12 months, the DRO is in place, you will not be required to make any payments towards the included debts.


  • A DRO has a relatively low set-up cost of £90, and can be paid in instalments.


  • Interest and charges relating to debts including in the DRO will be frozen for the 12 months the DRO is active.



  • A Debt Relief Order will affect your credit rating and, your ability to gain credit will be limited and the DRO will remain on your credit file for 6 years.


  • A Debt Relief Order can impact on certain jobs.


  • If your circumstances improve during the 12 months, the debts could be reverted back to the customer.


  • You cannot have more than £1000 worth of assets.


  • It is a criminal offence to falsify information on a DRO.


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