National Executive Committee of all MABS staff
19th October 2011
MABS : Who or what is it ?
130 Money Advisers
MABS NDL – development & support
Voluntary Management Committees
CIB – support and funding conduit from Dept of Social
Minister of Social Protection
MABS : Who are the clients ?
Just like you and me ….
Who lost their job ….
Whose business failed ….
Who experienced illness ….
Or relationship break up ….
Who got caught in circumstances beyond their control ….
Who were on low income ….
Or a social welfare payment ….
Who are working class, middle class, formerly well to do ….
MABS Activity 2010
Active Ongoing Indebted Clients 24,755
New clients to service 21,653
Helpline Calls 30,000
Website hits 250,000
MABS : How are the clients?
Sometimes …. Hopeless & Suicidal
How many of us are only a payday or two away from finding it
difficult to meet our commitments ……
The staff are informed by their interaction with our clients over a
period of 19 years and bring a flavour of this experience by the
following sample case studies
MABS : Client Cases
Client A – Male, Daughter at College living at home, Child from a second relationship, Public sector
employment, Sub-prime Mortgage
• Monthly Income 2542.41
• Mortgage / Insurance (arrears 12878.87) 903.77
• Utilities 247.25
• Food / Housekeeping 524.41
• Child Maintenance 173.00
• Phone/Transport/Education/Clothing/Househ Maint 375.65
• Medical Costs 120.00
• Hair/Pocket Money/Family Outings/Cigs & Alc 274.95
Secondary Debts 25839.52
Outstanding Mortgage Balance
(26 years left to pay taking client to his 80th Birthday) 157,000
Repossession order being sought
MABS : Client Cases
Client B – Female, recently separated, 4 children, no mortgage owns the family home
jointly with husband. Dissolved business. Client had signed some personal
guarantees for the business as had her husband
Social Welfare income weekly 264.70
Total income including maintenance/child bene etc. 458.70
Total household expenditure 521.35
The guarantee holders are seeking judgement
Guaranteed debt 158,000
Guarantee holder 1 is being paid E40 per month
Guarantee holder 2 is not being paid
This family may lose their home but not because they are not paying their mortgage.
MABS : Client Cases
CLIENT C – Married couple, former construction worker, Employer
forced purchase of a lorry
Monthly welfare 1460.28
Total expenditure 1439.00
Outstanding Mortgage 100k
Home value 350k ?
Secondary debt including lorry (36,300) 83,200
The payment time to deal with debts 325.5 years
To pay back at interest rate above .02% Never
When this case went to Court the court struck a E15 repayment
MABS: Client Cases
Client D – Married couple, 4 children, rural Ireland, new
House Value 1 m ….. 350k ?????
Outstanding mortgage (arrears 12k) 625k
Secondary Creditors – 14 372.5k
Monthly mortgage repayment 3500 pm
Income (mixture salary/ social welfare)2706.60
Disposable income 183.60
This client expressed suicidal ideation.
MABS : What does it have to offer?
Experienced, committed, trained staff, many with professional
qualifications, all with well developed inter-personal skills
National Presence in communities near users
Infrastructure – offices, payment systems, protocols, standard
Reputation & relationships of trust with client, creditor, statutory &
Tried & Tested Holistic approach leading to sustainable repayment –
A database which if adapted and anonomised could provide debt data
from a representative sample of debtors in relation to employment
status, welfare payments etc. and inform policy.
Experience of Settlement
European recognition as an example of best practice
What is Needed to Deal the Debt
All debts, mortgage & consumer credit, must be dealt with
together to achieve a workable solution.
Establish debt management agents to help people work
towards sustainable repayments for the debtor and a realistic
repayment stream into the financial system
Acknowledge that some mortgages are unsustainable and
some consumer credit debt will not be repaid
Acknowledge that some people will need to be helped with re-
Put in place insolvency and settlement systems which all
people to move forward to become socially & economically
productive “after debt”.
Maintain appropriate access to credit for participants
Learn from International
The UK system of debt management, extensively referenced
when the Law Reform Commission reported, is now being
The UK has installed a Government funded Money Advice
Service as Debt Services reviewed by the OFT were found to have
many compliance and quality issues despite licensing and
The main failings of licensed private operators were in relation to
transparency and competence levels of front line staff.
Sustainable holistic approaches result from a Money Adviser
being able to empathise with the client situation. The failure of
many UK voluntary debt arrangements has been attributed to
the lack of face to face interactions with debtors.
MABS : Full Circle
MABS was set up as a response to Moneylending almost
20 years ago, people are being driven back to
Moneylenders right now
We are in danger of sending those is debt round in ever
decreasing circles through the lack of pragmatic response
to the debt crisis
Doing too little now may lead to huge social and financial
costs later …….
Thank you for your attention