Paying Your Debt While Under Debt Review

Making Monthly Payments

According to the National Credit Act, consumers can choose one of two ways to repay their debts while in debt review.  An organized consumer, who doesn’t mind the risk and effort it takes, can pay each credit provider themselves according to the Debt Counsellor’s repayment plan.  Alternatively, if the consumer wants convenience and less risk, they can make use of an NCR registered Payment Distribution Agency (PDA).  PDAs are an important part of the National Credit Act.  Your Debt Counsellor may advise you on what they feel is best for you.

Paying the Debt Yourself

Paying your court restructured debt yourself allows you more control but it does expose you to additional risks and a lot more work.  If you have struggled to handle payments to all your creditors on time in the past then be cautious of this option.

You will have to make lots of different payments to different accounts each month (with associated costs).  You need to make sure each credit provider gets the right amount and keep your own records.

Accounts get different amounts each month according to the plan.  These amounts can change often and you need to pay the right amount into the right account each month.

‘you need to pay the right amount into the right account each month’

You need to be an excellent record keeper, as your records may later be needed to resolve disputes and to reconcile accounting differences over time.  Many times, it is best to send copies of all payments to your Debt Counsellor for their records in case you lose yours.  Make backup copies.

You carry the risk of making mistakes and have to accept the risk of credit providers holding you accountable for wrong payments.  If they receive the wrong amount or money is put in the wrong account with the wrong reference, it can cause them to start additional legal action due to short payments.

Make sure you pay your debt counsellor their fees each month when you pay your debts or you could end up stranded in the process without anyone to help you.

By handling payments yourself you pay normal banking costs for each payment. Sometimes this can be slightly cheaper than via a PDA.

‘Debt Counsellors never handle your money.  They are not allowed to’

Paying Via A Payment Distribution Agency

Using a payment service provider will mean you have to pay some fees for their services each month. This is offset by not having to pay lots of bank fees and all the time and effort it saves you.

Make sure that you are dealing with an NCR registered Payment Distribution Agent. These are the only companies recognized by the National Credit Act as allowed to assist.


Making a single payment to the PDA and letting them handle the rest of the work makes your life easier.

PDAs carry insurance in case they make mistakes.  This allows for some peace of mind.  Also, the fact that the NCR regularly checks up on them helps you feel confident your funds are being cared for.  They are not perfect but can be held accountable for any mistakes.

PDAs keep detailed records of each payment and report to you monthly on your distribution.

REMEMBER: The PDA is not the Debt Counsellor.  They are separate companies.

REMEMBER: Debt Counsellors never handle your money.  They are not allowed to.


Your Debt Counsellor can advise you on whether they think you can handle payments yourself or whether they recommend using a NCR registered Payment Distribution Agent to make your life easier. The most important thing to remember is to never, ever miss a payment or pay less than you are meant to each month. 


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