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PDA’s versus Debt Counsellors

PDAS HANDLE YOUR MONEY, NOT YOUR DEBT REVIEW. DEBT COUNSELLORS HANDLE YOUR DEBT REVIEW, NOT YOUR MONEY.

A lot of consumers who begin debt counselling do not make good notes or save vital documents about their extremely important and life changing debt review. This leads some to forget who their Debt Counsellors actually is.

Fortunately, most consumers know that they pay their debts via a regular monthly payment through one of 4 Payment Distribution Agents (PDAs). This reflects on their bank statements and they receive emails (or SMS) reminding them of this every month.

At present, only 4 entities have been registered as PDAs with the National Credit Regulator who check up on them and audit them regularly to ensure consumer’s funds are safe.

A lack of regular and clear training and communication from their Debt Counsellor can unfortunately leave consumers confused, thinking that their Payment Distribution Agent (PDA) is actually their Debt Counsellor.

YOU MAY NOT HAVE SIGNED A CONTRACT

Part of the problem is a lack of clearly worded service contracts from their Debt Counsellor.

Many Debt Counsellors still, despite requirements of the Consumer Protection Act, fail to provide detailed service contracts explaining what they will and won’t do. Most Debt Counsellors still only provide a long application form with lots of info called a Form 16. This is just an application document or form and is not a contract as required by law.

Due to this lack of clear explanation consumers can easily get confused.

PDAS CONFUSED FOR DEBT COUNSELLORS

A lack of clear information by their PDA and Debt Counsellor can end up confusing consumers. As a result, the PDAs regularly get flooded with questions about consumer’s debt review that need to actually be answered by their Debt Counsellor.

Consumer should note that the PDAs are not Debt Counsellors. The PDAs handle the payment or money side of things (the Debt Counsellor does not handle your money only the PDA does). This separation of duties helps protect consumers and Debt Counselors, ensuring there can be no fingers pointed about funds going missing or stolen. After all how can a Debt Counsellor steal money they never touch? It is a great protection for all parties involved.

Most Debt Counsellors have even signed conditions of registration with the NCR that prevent them from receiving any funds (even fees) directly from a consumer. These monthly fee payments have to be made via a PDA.

YOUR PDA WILL TRY HELP PUT YOU IN TOUCH WITH YOUR DEBT COUNSELLOR

Fortunately, even though so many consumers forget who their Debt Counsellor is, the various PDAs track this information and can help put consumer clients in contact with their Debt Counsellors. They will happily provide email addresses or telephone numbers.

So please remember: the PDAs just handle the money side of the process and the Debt Counsellors help with everything else from budgeting advice, helping contact your credit providers, assisting the courts to come up with a plan to restructure your debts and reviewing your situation as the process progresses.

If you have any questions about debt review we can be contacted on 0861 487 487 OR 0861 463 328.  Email us: tdekker@armanigroup.co.za or info@armanigroup.co.za ​. WhatsApp Us on 079 616 6874.  We are here to help!

Source: https://debtfreedigi.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/Debtfree-Magazine-Issue-12-of-2020.pdf

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