Do you qualify for a DRO?

Find out whether you could write off unsecured debts with a DRO

The main criteria for a DRO are:

  • Disposable income of £50 or less and low value assets
  • Must have unsecured debts of up to £15,000
  • Resident in England, Wales or Northern Ireland

Do You Qualify For
a DRO?

Call 0800 970 7673

Fees & Key information

Find out more about the fees involved with each debt solution.

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Useful free guides

Download the Insolvency Service guide to dealing with lenders.

Download the information package from Scotland’s Insolvency Service.

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We will treat your call in the strictest confidence and you will only be asked to supply information required to find the best solution to your debts.

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Debt Relief Order: Do I qualify?

A Debt Relief Order, or DRO, can write off debt after only 12 months, but it's only available for people who can't afford to repay everything they owe.

During a Debt Relief Order, your debts are put on hold for 12 months (a 12 month moratorium). A lot can change in a year. If your circumstances have improved enough after 12 months, you could begin repaying your debts again. If you're still in the same situation after 12 months, the unaffordable unsecured debt is written off.

The Insolvency Service runs DROs with the help of 'approved intermediaries' - debt advisers trained to deal with DROs. It has a list of criteria for people who want to apply to write off debt this way.

Do I qualify for a DRO?

A Debt Relief Order can only help with unsecured debts; it couldn't help you with a mortgage. If you have a mortgage, you wouldn't qualify for a DRO anyway, because property is a valuable asset - DROs are only available for people with few assets.

What is the maximum debt to qualify for a DRO?

A Debt Relief Order can help you with up to £15,000 of unsecured debts. This includes debts on credit cards, personal loans from the bank or payday lenders, overdrafts, a car finance loans and catalogue debts. A DRO can't help you with secured debts, a student loan, or court fines, for example.

You'll only qualify for a DRO if you can't afford to repay these debts any more.

What are the maximum assets you can have to qualify for a DRO?

You can own a car up to the value of £1,000 and still qualify for a DRO, although all your other assets cannot total more than £300 in value. For that reason, homeowners don't qualify for Debt Relief Orders.

What's the maximum income you can have to qualify for a DRO?

There isn't really a maximum, as it's your 'disposable income' that is taken into consideration when you apply for a DRO. If you have £50, or less, every month after paying tax, national insurance and your essential household expenses, you might qualify for a DRO.

Other conditions to qualify for a DRO

You need to be a resident of England, Wales or Northern Ireland, or have lived or worked in one of these places during the last three years, to qualify for a DRO.

Debt Relief Orders were only introduced in England and Wales in 2009 and in Northern Ireland in 2011.

You cannot have more than one DRO every six years. Entering into a DRO will stay on your credit record for six years, making it more difficult to borrow money.

You also can't apply for a DRO if you're already going through another form of insolvency such as bankruptcy or an IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement).

Finally, anyone who qualifies for a Debt Relief Order must pay £90 to apply.

You could find out in just one phone call whether a DRO would be the right debt solution for you. Submit your details on the form on this page for a free callback, or call the number at the top of the page to find out more.