Product Guide: Debt Counsellors Association of South Africa
DCASA Fee Structure
Product: Fee Structure
Application/initiation fee: An Application fee of R50 + VAT in terms of the National Credit Act, Schedule 2 (2).
Rejection fee: A rejection fee of R300.00 (excluding VAT) when an application for debt review is rejected.
Restructuring fee: A Restructuring fee less or equal to the first instalment of the debt re-arrangement plan with a maximum of R6000 (excluding VAT)
Monthly fee: A monthly After-care fee of 5% (excluding VAT) of the monthly instalment of the debt re-arrangement plan with a maximum of R400 (excluding VAT) for a period of 24 months. Thereafter 3% (excluding VAT) with a maximum of R400 (excluding VAT) for the remaining period.
DCASA is a professional body of Debt Counsellors in South Africa that promotes the interests of its members and keeps them up to date with the theory and practice of debt counselling and related services. The Association promotes fair credit practice within South Africa and liaises and speaks to industry on behalf of its members.
When the National Credit Act was promulgated in 2007, it gave birth to the profession of Debt Counselling. The purpose of Debt counselling is to offer an alternative remedy to over indebtedness than the traditional methods such as Administration and Sequestration could offer. Although it is a relatively new profession in South Africa, the concept has been proven in countries such as the U.S.A and the United Kingdom.
Further indications of its success is the fact that since inception, in excess of R2 billion has been paid over to Credit Providers through the process of Debt Review. Debt Counselling has the wellbeing of the consumer at heart, providing a tool whereby a consumer's dignity remains in tact, and ultimately be rehabilitated into the credit market.
What the DCASA needs to help you through Debt Counselling
Provide details of your income, monthly budget and debt commitments to the Debt Counsellor. You will need copies of your payslip, ID and the latest statement of all your debt.
The Debt Counsellor will do an initial assessment to check that you are over indebted then the Debt Counsellor will set up a consultation with you. This could be a face to face consultation at one of the DCASA branches or a telephone consultation.
During the consultation the Debt Counsellor will verify your budget and your existing debt commitments. A new budget will be agreed and the amount available for debt repayment will be determined. The Debt Counsellor will also provide you with details of all the costs as well as an interim repayment plan. This is when you officially apply for Debt Counselling.
The Debt Counsellor will contact all your Credit Providers as well as the Credit Bureaus to verify your debt. You will also be listed on the Credit Bereaus that you are under debt counselling. This listing will stay there until you have paid everything off, then it will be completely removed. The Debt Counsellor will, where possible, negotiate a proposal with all your Credit Providers.
The Credit Providers may accept the proposals and if all of them do, then a Consent Order will be obtained from a Magistrate Court. If one or more of the Credit Providers do not accept the proposed repayment plan the Debt Counsellor will submit a proposal to the Magistrate for a decision.
The Debt Counsellor will provide you with a final repayment plan and this repayment plan is also submitted to a Payment Distribution Agency (PDA). The aim of this is to collect a single payment from you and ensure that the correct amount is paid to all Credit Providers on a monthly basis. This will continue until the debt has been repaid.
Overview of the fee structure
The NCR published fee guidelines that all debt counsellors must adhere to. The guidelines have been published to ensure that Debt Counsellors do not overcharge already burdened consumers, and to ensure that the Debt Counsellor can make enough to sustain his/her business.
The Debt Counselling Fee Guidelines:
An Application fee of R50 + VAT in terms of the National Credit Act, Schedule 2 (2).
A rejection fee of R300.00 (excluding VAT) when an application for debt review is rejected.
A Restructuring fee less or equal to the first instalment of the debt re-arrangement plan with a maximum of R6000 (excluding VAT)
In case of a joint application the fee may be increased to R6000 (excluding VAT)
A monthly After-care fee of 5% (excluding VAT) of the monthly instalment of the debt re-arrangement plan with a maximum of R400 (excluding VAT) for a period of 24 months. Thereafter 3% (excluding VAT) with a maximum of R400 (excluding VAT) for the remaining period.
Should the consumer withdraw from the Debt Review Process after a certain stage a fee equal to 75% of the restructuring fee will be payable by the consumer.
A legal fee of R750 in the 2nd month for the debt counsellor to obtain a consent order when all credit providers consented to the debt re-arrangement.
Any additional cost for further legal processes. The debt counsellor should be able to present proforma invoices issued by the attorneys involved.
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