Thanks to technology, the world is becoming much smaller and people move to sunnier climates. The reasons for this may be for better employment or simply for the warmer weather. This does, however, mean there are some new challenges that face us. Most of these may involve finances, as it may be challenging to handle one’s personal accounts from abroad.
British citizens may move about freely within the EU. They are also allowed to move to a different EU country and reside there. How does this affect any debts held in the UK?
One of the simplest and easiest methods is to make payments until the debts are paid off, which is a good idea if you can afford it. If your debts are in GBP, but your salary is paid in Euros, it might not be possible to do this very quickly. The GBP’s strength may make paying off your debts more difficult. When you retire to a warm place and take your pension with you it might be possible for you to pay the UK debts based on what your expenses will be. This may only be applicable if your pension is in GBP.
The strong GBP exchange rate may still apply for a while. If you find it difficult to pay off your UK debts as well as cover your expenses in an EU country, you do have some options. Consider getting a debt management plan to deal with this. This will help you to make affordable payments towards each of your accounts, while still having enough money left over to cover your EU expenses. This informal arrangement with your creditors can be set up by yourself or by a third party.
Another option you may have is that of bankruptcy. Do consider all the aspects of this before you apply to be made bankrupt, however. Bankruptcy should be a final resort, and there are some conditions that would apply.
Those residing in any of the EU countries for three months or longer, may file for bankruptcy according to that country’s bankruptcy procedures. So there is a three-month timeframe during which you may apply for UK bankruptcy while living in the EU. Find a representative to do this for you; it is done in the High Court in London.
Should you be too late to file for bankruptcy as you are outside the three-month window, you should consult someone knowledgeable on the country’s bankruptcy laws. Most EU countries do have strict bankruptcy laws, so it is advisable to file for bankruptcy as soon as you possibly can.
Those with property in the EU who want to file for bankruptcy in the UK would find it is much more difficult to do so. Assets, no matter where they are, would be included in a bankruptcy in England and Wales. Many countries’ courts help each other in cases such as bankruptcy. Trustees may sell property abroad that belongs to the person who is being made bankrupt.
A homeowner who is a permanent EU resident and who has no financial connections to the UK apart from the debt would not be granted a bankruptcy.
There are options available to people who need to pay their debts, but are struggling to do so. If you would like more information about going bankrupt in the UK while living in the EU contact us today.