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Personal insolvency arrangement (PIA)

A personal insolvency arrangement (PIA) is a type of insolvency introduced in 2012 to help people who cannot repay their debts.

A PIA may be available if you meet these conditions:

  • You’re not able to pay your unsecured and secured debts
  • At least one of your debts is secured against a property in Ireland
  • You've no more than €3 million worth of secured debt (though this can be increased with your lender's permission)
  • You’ve cooperated with your mortgage lender for at least six months to try and work out a repayment arrangement
  • You’ve never had a PIA, and you’ve not had a debt relief notice (DRN) in the last three years, or had adebt settlement arrangement (DSA) or been bankrupt in the last five years
  • You live in Ireland or you’ve lived or had a business in Ireland in the last 12 months

What debts can be included in a PIA?

Most common debts are included in a PIA. Unsecured debts such as credit and store cards, overdrafts, credit union loans and business loans are all included. Mortgages and other secured loans are also included.

Some debts can be included as long as the lender doesn’t object. This includes taxes, rates and property service charges.

Some debts aren’t included in a PIA, and you’ll still have to pay these. Family maintenance payments, criminal fines and loans obtained by fraud are all excluded from a PIA.

After your PIA has been approved

Once the PIA is set up, you must stop paying anything directly to the lenders included in it. You should only make the payments to the PIA. During this period you will continue to pay your housing costs.

If your income or living costs change during the PIA, you must let your PIP know. If this affects the amount you can pay, they may change your payments. Your PIP will contact you at least once a year to check if anything has changed.

If you apply for any credit of more than €650 during your PIA, you must tell the lender you’re borrowing from about your PIA.

Your credit rating will be affected during a PIA, and you’ll probably find it difficult to borrow more money. Your credit rating will improve over time if you don’t run up more debts.

If you don’t make the agreed payments to your PIA it may be cancelled. Your lenders can then start to contact you directly again, and you’ll have to deal with them yourself.

At the end of your PIA, any unsecured remaining debt is written off and your name is removed from the public register of PIAs. Depending on what was agreed with your lenders in the PIA, you may still need to pay some or all of your secured debts.

Find out more

If you want to know more, the Insolvency Service publishes a useful guide to PIAs (PDF).

If you need debt advice, call the MABS helpline now on 0761 07 2000. They’re open Monday to Friday from 9am to 8pm.

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