A Big Update!

December 22nd, 2008 by drowningmummy

Has it really been over 3 months since my last blog? Where has time gone? So lets fill you all in.

After the lovely call from our examiner telling us we could keep car, personal effects, furniture etc, we then recieved a letter asking for our signatures regarding Data Protection and our NIL tax codes. We signed these and sent them off immediately. Then we recieved another generic letter regarding us buying the BI in our home for £1. We agreed and signed this, but are still waiting news. After about a month or so (six weeks after BR), we still had had no interview, it was then that we discovered we were Type 0 Debtors, http://www.insolvency.gov.uk/freedom…art3/Part3.htm
and would probably never have an interview. Nothing much happened after that. llyods bank said we could keep our current/joint account, T-Mobile allowed us to stay on contract as did Sky, Setanta, BT etc. Our lives did change dramatically but in the most positive way. The only thing taken from us were our debts.

I returned to work which I am loving btw, but sadly my relationship with my husband continued to deteriorate. His family were rather unkind to me (second wives always seem to take so much sh*t)!!!!!!! and I made the decision to end our marriage. He moved in with a friend and I stayed here in the house taking on the mortgage on my own. I didnt have to go back to work fulltime either thanks to tax credits! I feel a huge sense of guilt towards my children, but they have a wonderful daddy who sees them all the time and they are very happy little girls. I too am much happier.

We wrote to the OR reciever early December to inform them that we had split up and enclosed a new I&E each, have still not heard back regarding this. However just 2 days ago we did recieve a letter each (both sent to my address) saying that after just three months of bankruptcy we are being put forward for early discharge. What a wondeful Christmas present. We quickly signed and completed the IPOQ and sent them off recorded delivery today, so now the wait is on. Apparantly this takes approx 56 days, however if they are too busy to process then ED does not happen.

So in a nutshell: No interview, No IPA, kept EVERYTHING and have not recieved a NIL tax code afterall (and unlikely to now). Nothing but positives.

Only negative is that I am still in arrears with my council tax (5 months) but will hopefully be able settle this in January by switching to an interest only mortgage for a month or two. Not liking my C0-Op Cashminder account too much. Have had two charges so far which were a result of the slow change over of DDs (some went to old account, some to C0-Op), and have now discovered that if I recieve one more then they will close my account. So just waiting for that to happen! Will try and clean up my file once discharged and rebuild my credit score so that I can get a current account again. But, that is the worst thing that has happened to be fair.

I’m still amazed at the ease this happened and the positive experince it has had on my life. Finances are getting better and it has been 8 months since I have used credit, which I just love!

So, I’ll let you all know as soon as I hear about BI and/or ED!

Merry Christmas xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx�

The Official Reciever

September 6th, 2008 by drowningmummy

Well 6 days after BR and we recieved our first letter. The OR stated that he had no intention of interviewing us as this present time, however he may wish to in the future. He asked that we signed 3 forms each and returned them to him within 7 days. The forms were one on Data Protection, one to say that we had understood the letter and read the leaflets regarding the fact that our assests are now his and one to confirm that we understood our new tax codes. The last two (I think) had to be witnessed by a friend or relative and signed.

The next day we each recieved a call from the ORs assistant. He was a lovely man, who didnt really have any business to do with my husband but was having trouble getting hold of me (I was in the classroom studying). I rang him back in my lunch hour (I was so nervous), but I neednt have been. He was very nice, quite charming and witty and made things very easy for me to understand. The first thing that he said was that I could keep my car! I was so happy and offered to drive to his office and kiss him! He just needs a copy of my road tax, Insurance Certificate and MOT certificate. He also asked for a copy of our Life Assurance policy and  a break down of our expenditure (I had not individually totalled things when I submitted online), I had also missed out a couple of credit card balances, but he was happy to take a close estimate on the phone. He also said that he had no interest in our furniture or appliances. We then chatted about my job and was I flying anywhere nice in the coming months. Then I bid him farewell and went and got some lunch!

The next day we recieved our welcome packs from the C0-Op, we had been accepted for individual bank accounts! This was proving to be a positive week. All the advice we had been given on the forums was proving to be essential, for example opening our Co-Op accounts on the day of BR, without the forums I would not have even known about the Co-Op.

Then the next day (phew!) we recieved 3 letters each from the OR. Pretty much saying the same thing, that they now had the rights to our home, but that we could purchase the BI. We plan to do this as the house is in negative equity, so it should cost £1 plus £211 fees. We are going to have my dad buy it. We already have the estate agents valuations from July (two months ago) and hope that they will be classed as ‘recent’. I think for the first time we are actually pleased that we took out a 110% mortgage as it has actually helped us keep our home. Fingers crossed. So we have to also send of the valuations and a mortgage statement which we also have, so hopefully should be dealt with swiftly.

Downside is that we are still rather poor. My salary kicks in this month and we start our own bank accounts, so things will be better then I’m sure.

Still recieving plenty of calls and scary letters, in fairness I havent really spoken to any of them so its to be expected. The two that I did speak to continue to call, so I’ll sort it out once my course has finished. The letters do still frighten me as I dont think that my debt free existence has sunk in yet! I still dont quite believe it. I do feel gratitude though, that someone has given me a second chance.

Didnt see the local rag as stayed in London for the week, so I have no idea if we were in it or not. Strangely enough I dont really care! My step mum has been a rock and really taken care of me and girls. I’m going to give her my M&S Blog vouchers, as she really deserves them, she’ll probably say no, but I really want her to have them. Anyway its saturday now, so I’ll post everything off on monday and then hopefully we should find out if an IPA is needed.

Moving Forward Already

September 1st, 2008 by drowningmummy

Just my luck part 2:

Well if it wasnt bad enough that I saw my new friend in court on D day, how about this? Its actually quite funny.

I live on a small street of about 18 houses, in the next street we have had to endure the neighbours from hell for the past 18 months. Honestly no words can describe these people. Whole house graffittied outside and INSIDE, staircase ripped out, garden set fire to, every single window smashed and front door kicked in, gangs of kids using abusive langu age 24/7, you name it. Anyway for the past week or so the house has been boarded up and its all gone quiet. I was having a nose yesterday when 4 other neighbours decided to join me. It transpires that the house was left in a will to the mum from hell and they have now been evicted. Thats the rumour anyway. Neighbour number 1 then piped up…..

“It will be in the back of the paper this week if they’ve been evicted”

“No it wont” I answered

“Yes it will” said neighbour 2, “It will be at the back with the legal notices”

“No it wont” I repeated

“I work for the council” said neighbour 3, “they have to print it if someone gets evicted and owns the property…”

“No they dont” I butted in.

“It will be at the back with the bankruptcies and other public notices…..”

“No it wont!” I barked begining to sound desperate

“yeah it will, we’ll all have to look out for it” said neighbour 3.

“gulp!” (that was the noise that I think came from me)

How unlucky? I cant believe it. The one bloody week my neighbours decide to read the back pages and its the week I went BR! I could flamin’ well throttle that family from hell!

As for hubby and I, we have now decided 100% to part.

He isnt going to adapt to this new life and I dont want the responsibility of making things balance anymore, I’ve done that for too long. He will have to stand on his own two feet from now on. Obviously there are other issues too, but this is one of the main ones that has been cropping up for years and never gets resolved. I sat  my step-daughter down (she is 22) and explained everything, I even told her about the BR. Her reaction did not surprise me in the least, mature, understanding and caring. She is going to rent a two bed flat/house in her name and share it with her daddy. That way when the girls go and stay with their daddy, at least their sister will be there too. I’ve also had my homeless brother sleeping on my couch (dont ask)!!!!, and I’ve told him to grow up, get responsible and get out. Harsh I know, but if you knew him and the full story you would know its the only language that he understands.

I’m very sad to be going it alone with an 8 month old and 3 year old, but I’m practically doing it on my own now anyway, plus I am so miserable in my marriage (so is he), something has to change. They will be leaving once the OR has conducted his review and decided on an IPA etc. Once that is sorted, we will each do a new I&E (taking into account all the changes) and submit to the OR. Yup, the OR is gonna love us. If we had sorted this sooner then we still would have done it this way as I’ve heard that ORs dont take kindly to going BR whilst splitting!!!!! So it looks like Nov/Dec time. I feel awful for my children and feel so guilty, but they have a good daddy who I know will see them everyday if he can.

So thats it for now. Back to work in 2 days, bit stressed about the exams and whether I have studied enough (still got loads to do), but know that I will be fine. Looking forward to it! Its gonna be 12 months of big changes!

Inspiration

August 31st, 2008 by drowningmummy

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream and not make dreams your master;
If you can think and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools
Then you’ve done all that could be done

Words by Rudyard Kipling

Inspiration from Ray (Wizzard) over on IVA.Co.Uk

“Thank you for that Ray. It was exactly the tonic I needed today.”

The Usual Suspects!

August 30th, 2008 by drowningmummy

I’m laughing now. I shouldn’t  be I know, but I am.

Why?

We are on the Insolvency Register. There we are, side by side, in all our glory, address, DOB and everything else.

This is weird. Thought I would feel relieved once BR; I don’t. Thought I’d be mortified to be on the register; I’m not.

The Twilight Zone

August 30th, 2008 by drowningmummy

Its day three now and I’m just a quivering mess. I feel entirely stuck in limbo and the slightest thing sets me off. I expected to feel a lot of things, but not this. Its a lack of control thing aswell. Even when I was fielding the calls, filing away the threatening letters, I was still in control. Now I dont know what is around the corner. The ironic thing is that I have yet to come across someone who regrets their desision.

I’m really going to have to try and stay extra positive, not only am I back at work this week, but my 3 year old has now been asking if I am sad today, which has horrified me as I thought I was keeping it together.

I know I went to pieces yesterday and probably blew things out of proportion, but the tears and sense of rejection were overwhelming. I wont open up a can of worms as the thread has been deleted but there were a couple of things that I wanted to clarify as sometimes things get taken out of context or misinterpreted on forums. Another forum user  felt that I was patronising and unhelpful. If anyone has ever been made to feel like that from me, then I sincerely apologise. I’m so comfortable on the forum and I do let my sense of humour slip through from time to time, I try and keep it upbeat as we are all in pretty dire situations, but maybe people can take it the wrong way.

I’m not sure about the comments about bragging about where I am from, what my upbringing was or what school I went to. I’m not sure what impression I am giving off if I am being referred to as ‘up myself’. I dont actually think that I have mentioned my upbringing. There is nothing exceptional or unusual about it which is why I was puzzled. I grew up in  a council flat, on an estate in South London in a one parent family (my dad raised me). Very bog standard, run of the mill, working class from where I was from. I went to my local comprehensive (but spent far more time bunking off), scraped through my GCSE’s with below average results, which was a shame as I am fairly bright! Then pulled it together to get a scholarship to study Drama in 1990, before leaving to pursue a career in the sky.

 I know that I said I didnt want to come back to the forum, but thats only because I was feeling a little bruised. It was also pointed out that as well as being unhelpful, I was not what this forum needed and that it wasn’t all about me and my needs. Once again, I am truly sorry if I harped on a bit too much in the run up to our BR. I am a worry wort and sometimes need to be calmed down, and if people were put off by me, then yes, the poster was right and that is not what the forum needs. So for now I’ll take a back seat and see how things pan out. The last thing that I want to do is stop people from getting good advice because of me putting them off.

I’m quite embarrassed about yesterday. Embarrassed that I got so comfortable that I cracked that little goodbye joke with Jo (Jo I know you know that it was meant to be light-hearted, and I always thought you would come back too 🙂 ), embarrassed that I treid to excuse my ‘Expert Status’ before even giving it a go. You see, I wasnt bragging about my other committments at the moment, but trying to tell people that I’ll never be as good as Jo and that I just dont have the time or energy that Jo had. I will however say that there is nothing wrong or crass about telling people that you sit on charitable committees. Thats the one thing that I do disagree with. It is not looking for brownie point as was suggested. If anyone sits on a committee then tell poeple! Charities rely on its members to spread the word and raise awareness and I’ll tell anyone about mine should they ask or should it be appropriate. I am passionate about my charity work. Since our son died, the charity work is the only thing that we can do together as mum and son. I dont get the joy of taking him to the park, or football or the zoo, so we do this instead. That is something that will always come first for me.

I dont blame the Poster on their views of me, we are all entitled to our opinions as he rightly said. Although his first post was described as harsh, he was polite in his other posts by apologising for causing offence, but still standing by his views of me, which is okay. We cant all get on with each other and I’m sorry that I wailed like a baby at the time. I’ll drop it now by saying once again that I am sorry if I upset anyone, I’m really not like that and please give me another chance.

Anyway, what a waffler eh?

Not sure what is in store for me at the moment. I’m going to attempt to go for a run today as I have my 10km in a few weeks and have not been training. I have my little girls to pay more attention to too. I never want my 3 year old to be upset by me again. I wont let this BR consume me. I’ll take everyones advice on their signatures as there are some real little gems there.

So Jo……….I will get a brighter torch!

The Deed is Done!

August 27th, 2008 by drowningmummy

I actually slept okay last night and woke naturally at 6.15 am. My step-mum arrived at 7.30 to look after the girls who were still upstairs sleeping. We crept out at 7.35am to walk to the court which took 35 minutes.

When we arrived we were glad to see that we were the only ones. The security guard let us in at 8.25 and we went upstairs to the Court Office Counter. The lady there opened up at 8.30 and was very polite and helpful. She said she only needed one copy of our forms and went through this with us. There were a few mistakes (like missing out our mortgage as a secured creditor! D’oh!), but she helped us out. We then paid our fee and swore on the bible. Just then another lady arrived for the same purpose.

We were given our files with our numbers on and sent downstairs to hand them to the court usher. We did this and the usher informed us that there were a couple of minor cases before us and one big one of two hours, but they hadnt turned up.  So we sat about waiting, it was 9.05 am.

Now let me take you back to the evening before. We have made a new friend and were invited to his home with our children for a dinner party. And what a lovely evening it was! I was sat next to a rather charming fellow who was a lawyer……………

At 9.35am I looked up and saw the lawyer! I looked at hubby, he looked at me and all I could mutter was “F*ck!”

“Hi Guys!” he said, “what brings you here, you didnt say last night”

Hubby took him off and quietly told him what we were doing.  It was funny because that was the first time I have ever seen hubby blush. Wish I’d had a camera. Anyway, said lawyer did not bat an eyelid and gave us the thumbs up, saidd we were doing the best thing. He also commented (not for the first time by many people) that our debt were rather low compared to others (me £12, 335 and hubby £16,039 but some of that counted twice as joint debts).

Anyway off he went and I struck up a converstaion with the lady next to me who was also going BR. Our stories were much the same. Overstretched ourselves etc etc.

At 10.40 am we were called in to see the Judge. This when my stomach quite literally flipped and my mouth went dry. I felt pittiful and  I hate that. I hate people taking pity on me.

We sat before her and she was rather nice. She asked did we understand fully what we were doing and did we want to proceed. She then asked would our jobs be okay. She commented that with our current salaries and our debts we would not be able to pay them off and for that reason she would grant the order! It took six minutes for both of us.

We then took our folders back to the office and waited to speak to the OR which took about 20 mins to set up. He seemed rather nice too and strangely was from the same home town as me. He took some basic details and then said he would write to us to advise if we needed an interview. I’m sure that we will.

So that was it. We went home and step-mummy took me out to lunch to calm me down. I had 3 glasses of wine and then had to come home and lay down for 2 hours!!!!!!!!

Did try and open up our cash-minder accounts with the Co-Op but they have been deferred for 4-7 days, so fingers crossed as really relying on that. Also spoke to two creditors………………..

First one was HFC regarding our DFS sofa loan. She was a rather sweet girl calling from India. She didnt understand BR and thought it was a IVA as she wanted to know who our IP was. I explained that there was no IP and that the debt was now gone, wiped out. She asked me who paid it, I said “The Queen” (well I didn’t know what to say).

Then I spoke to CDUK who have taken the debt over from egg (my scariest debt as never made a payment which means fraud). The lady was lovely and took my details and said they would be in contact. I really hope that they don’t prosecute. I will fight my corner though as that £1250 was not pre-meditated. I wanted to pay it back, but unfortunately the timing was all wrong and that is when I stopped paying our creditors in preparation for our IVA (which we subsequently could not afford). Hope they give me a chance to explain.

So thats all for now folks. I’m nervous about OR interview, but trying to stay calm. Going to settle down now for the evening with a chicken sandwich, some diet coke and BB9!!!!!

Our I&E

August 25th, 2008 by drowningmummy

Okay here goes: This is what I submitted a couple of hours ago.

Mortgage               920

Council Tax             96

Gas & Electric       118

Food & Toiletries 520

Telephones             83

Fuel & Travel        380

Clothes                    60

Water rates            20

Other Essentials  310.21

Other essential are:

Holiday           50

Parking permit  3.33

Car Insurance   28.33

Car tax                 14

Car spares & servicing   30

Union fees   5.78

Insurances (life/medical) 27.77

Repairs/servicing/household 25

TV license   12

School meals  16

School trips   10

Hobbies/enetertainment  10

Sundries and emergencies   40

Dentist  10

Prescriptions  7.50

Newspapers    5

Hairdressers    16

TOTAL =  2507.21

This is based on a family of 5 (mum, dad and two children, plus one adult – hubbys daughter from first marriage aged 22). Daughter aged 22 works but makes no contribution. She is not a dependant but we do pay for her food.

Total income:

£2527.00 that includes £42 child tax credit but does not include £125 child benefit.

Disposable income = £20

Disposable income WITH child benefit £145.

Wednesdays child is full of woe……

August 23rd, 2008 by drowningmummy

Well I was born on a wednesday and so I shall go bankrupt on one too!!!

I know we said this friday the 29th, but we are now going to do it on wednesday 27th! Scary. The reason being is that the scare-mongering has really worked and I cant wait any longer.

Before wednesday I will post up my I&E.

Took our cash from the bank today, have a grand total of £46 to live on! Woo Hoo!

But better days are ahead, I just know that they are.

And on the eighth day God created…….Primark!

August 21st, 2008 by drowningmummy

How did we cope before Primark? I’ve just purchased my outfit to wear to big, fancy wedding tomorrow and boy do I look damn fine! And all  for £22!!!!! Refreshed my bedroom earlier and did it for £31!!!!! Bought the girls some trendy little numbers for a grand total of £26!!!! Think I’m addicted.

I am now going to blame all of my debt on Primark. If they had arrived sooner then I would never have felt the need to shop in Debenhams!

But some more pants news coming up! Car made an awful screeching, tumble dryer noise today whilst the brakes failed. Managed to get the car to Dads, and he said that the pads and possible the brake discs must have gone. Could not believe it. In the space of 1 month, my tumble dryer, fridge-freezer and now car have all broken. Sat on dads bed with my two babies and wailed (like only a 36 year old could) “Its sooooooooooooooooo unfair!” (think I was a bit like Vicki Pollard). “How can I pay? I have no money”

Dad simply said “Whats the problem, we’ll get Paul to do it for you, he wont charge much!” (Paul is a friend)

But I fancied a bit of drama, so I continued for a bit…………..

“I have no luck………..just when I try to get on my feet………the children, what about the children?….”

Once it had become a full blown theatrical performance, my dad offered to sort the  problem and said I could pay when I had the money. Happy days. Now the OR will probably take it knowing my luck. Good Grief! Can you imagine my speech then?

Anyway caught the train home and now all set for a child free night and  a wonderful wedding tomorrow.

XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOOXOOXOXOOXOXOXOXOOXOXOOXOXOOXOXOOXOOXOXOXOOXOXOX

Thanks also to everyone for your messages of support regarding my dear colleague. I shall be attending his memorial service if I can, if only to give a hug to his wife.