Over-indebtedness: requirements and functioning of law

The difficulties related to over-indebtedness became very evident especially in the years following the crisis that started in 2008. Among the most evident effects there was an increase in suicides that involved entrepreneurs but also private individuals, crushed by the weight of a debt exposure no longer sustainable.

Financial problems are sometimes due to tax issues, such as heavy Nice bank files or simply to a reduction in income due to unemployment or other similar reasons (further information: What to do in case of debts with Nice bank ).

Precisely for this reason, in January 2012, Law No. 3 was approved which became active in February of the same year and which was defined as the Law on over-indebtedness or the Save Suicide Law. Let’s see the main features.

What is it about? – procedure of debt relief accessible

What is it about? - procedure of debt relief accessible

In practice, this law introduced the procedure of debt relief accessible to non-fallible subjects, which allows you to reorder your debts and make them more sustainable. How? By compiling a plan that is feasible and sustainable in certain and defined times. In compiling this plan, some debts can be excluded, obtaining a reduction in their weight, which can go up to 80% less.

However, attention must be paid to the key aspects of this law, which are the sustainability of the repayment plan and above all its feasibility. It is therefore not a possible way to be used to escape the obligation to repay debts or to avoid paying Nice bank bills. Indeed it is necessary that the possibility of a regular repayment of all the debts contracted is objective and that it is evaluated as such by the experts appointed by the court.

Who is it for? consumers and non-fallible subjects can use debt

Who is it for? consumers and non-fallible subjects can use debt

As already mentioned, consumers and non-fallible subjects can use debt. In this sense, those who are not subject to bankruptcy law in carrying out their work are to be understood. For this reason, the law includes two methods:

  • the consumer’s plan : this procedure is aimed at those who are private individuals and have contracted debts for the personal (non-working) sphere. With this procedure and if it is logically approved by the judge there is no need for creditors to give their consent. The judge’s decision makes the plan mandatory for all parties involved. The overdrawn consumer will have to be regular in following the repayment plan. It is also necessary for the latter to have a wealth or income capable of allowing repayment. So the debt cannot be used by those who have no demonstrable income unless they have someone to act as guarantor;
  • the debtor’s agreement : this procedure concerns subjects who are not consumers but at the same time are not subject to bankruptcy law. It must always be approved by the judge but creditors can object here. It is in fact necessary that at least 60% of those who have a credit agree in passing the plan as it was proposed.

To these two methods a third is added in which the debtor makes his assets available to the attorney appointed by the court to provide, through the alienation of a part or all of it, to repay the debts. Only the salaries or wages and pensions, the non-seizable credits and assets, the usufruct rights and the maintenance-related credits are left out of the assets.

How do you access the procedure?

How do you access the procedure?

You must go to the territorially competent court. The law (art. 15) provided for the creation of crisis settlement bodies (OCC), designed to guide anyone wishing to use the debt relief process. In practice, however, only in some cities were these “committees” born.

It is always advisable to ask the registry of your own court (that of the ‘voluntary jurisdiction’) and inquire if there are these bodies or if you have other references, possibly giving a mandate for the appointment of a specialized professional. This figure is essential to solve any small hitch in the preparation of the plan, and to arrive at a reimbursement program that appears to the judge actually feasible and sustainable.

When can a consumer not use the procedure?

When can a consumer not use the procedure?

As already mentioned, a reason for exclusion refers to the lack of the requirements related to one’s own assets or to the possession of a demonstrable income. To these causes are also added:

  • having used the debt in the previous 5 years ;
  • not having complied with the previous repayment plan;
  • have undergone any withdrawal from the procedure;
  • having omitted part of the documentation during the boot process.


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