Breathing Space.

How the Government’s Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space Moratorium and Mental Health Crisis Moratorium) could help you.

The Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space) has been in force since May 4th 2021, and if you’re struggling with mounting interest, charges or even legal action, you can apply for some much needed Breathing Space from your debts.

You could receive protection for up to 60 days, giving you the time and space you need to get back on your feet, or to get a longer term solution in place.

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No contact from creditors

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No interest or charges

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No legal action

How it works:

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Speak to us.

Speak to one of our expert Advisors and we’ll go through your current financial situation.

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Proving the criteria is met, we will apply for Breathing Space on your behalf and you’ll be protected from the following day.

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Be sure to check in with us between day 25 and 30 to review your situation (don’t worry, we’ll remind you when this is coming up).

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Your Breathing Space could be in place for up to 60 days.

Get in touch.

If you would like to talk to us about breathing space, complete the form below or call us on 0161 837 4754

Types of Breathing Space.

There are two different types of Breathing Space that fall under the regulations:

  • 'Standard Breathing Space' is available to anyone with problem debt. It offers legal protections from creditor action including most enforcement action, additional interest and charges and general contact for up to 60 days.
  • 'Mental Health Crisis Breathing Space' is only available to someone who is receiving mental health crisis treatment and it offers stronger protections. It lasts as long as the person's mental health crisis treatment, plus 30 days (no matter how long the crisis treatment lasts) but it can only be applied for with evidence from an Approved Mental Health Professional.

You’ll need to speak to an FCA regulated debt advice provider, such as MoneyPlus Advice to access either type.

Things you should know.

  • The Breathing Space Scheme lasts for 60 days, and it can only be used once every 12 months (however, there is no limit for those who are experiencing a mental health crisis – more on this below).
  • Breathing Space is not a payment holiday; you must continue to pay your contracted payments and bills whilst the scheme is in place, otherwise it could be cancelled.
  • The chosen debt advice provider must make an entry on the ‘Breathing Space Register’. The register isn’t available for public viewing (unlike an Insolvency Register) – only creditors and FCA regulated authorities will be able to view it.
  • Between day 25 and 35, you'll need to review your financial situation with your chosen debt advice provider.
  • Debt advice providers cannot (and should not) charge you a fee for the advice they give you, or setting up the Breathing Space Scheme for you. If you end up choosing a more permanent solution with the provider, any normal fees will apply once the solution commences.

What will be included?

Most debts can be included in a Breathing Space:

  • Credit cards
  • Store cards
  • Personal loans
  • Payday loans
  • Overdrafts
  • Utility
  • Mortgage or rent arrears

Government debts like tax and benefit debts can usually be included too, as long as they aren’t on the exclusions list.

Joint debts can be also included, even if only one person applies for a breathing space. The joint debt would become a breathing space debt, and both people who owe money would be protected. The breathing space does not affect the other person’s debts and liabilities in their own names.

While guarantor loans can be included in a breathing space, the protections do not extend to the guarantor. The guarantor can apply for their own breathing space, if they’re eligible.

What can't be included?

All personal debts can usually be included unless they are on the below exclusion list.

  • Obligations from a confiscation order
  • Debts incurred because of fraud.
  • Child maintenance or obligations under an order made in family court
  • A crisis or budgeting loan from the social fund
  • Student loans
  • Damages you need to pay for death or personal injury caused to someone else
  • Advance payments of Universal Credit
  • Council tax liabilities that are not due (only arrears can be included).

While some business debts can be included, they do not qualify if the debt only relates to the business, not you personally and you are VAT registered or a partner in a business with someone else.

An eligible non-domestic rates debt (or business rates) is a qualifying debt if all instalments for that financial year have fallen due and have not been paid. If you have been served with a ‘further notice’, the remaining liability for that financial year is a qualifying debt.

Read our blog or head to to find out more.

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© 2021 MoneyPlus Group

MoneyPlus Advice is a trading style of MoneyPlus Group Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Your payments into a Debt Management Plan are protected and compensation could be available from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme if there are any shortfalls in funds held on a customer's behalf. MoneyPlus Advice refers customers to MoneyPlus Insolvency Limited for Individual Voluntary Arrangements and Protected Trust Deeds. Licensed Insolvency Practitioner: Kate Cutler is employed by MoneyPlus and is licensed to act as an Insolvency Practitioner in the UK by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. David Griffiths is employed by MoneyPlus and is licensed to act as an Insolvency Practitioner in the UK by the Insolvency Practitioners Association. MoneyPlus Group Limited (07310059) and MoneyPlus Insolvency Limited (08214793) are registered in England and Wales at registered offices: Riverside, New Bailey Street, Manchester, M3 5FS.