Insolvency Service of Ireland An independent government organisation.

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Donna’s Story


When I got the call to say it was approved, I felt absolute relief. All the weight just lifted off me.


Background and circumstances

I’m a mother of 2 kids. I was working but I got post-natal depression and I was unable to continue it. Then when I got over the depression there were no jobs to be had. I’m on lone parent’s allowance so money is tight. I started to build up debt with the credit union and an overdraft, but I couldn’t make the payments.

Meeting an Approved Intermediary

For a good few years I really worried about money. And when the letters started to come through the door, I had complete apathy because I didn’t have anything to give. But I knew I couldn’t go on like this forever, so I spoke to MABS and they put me in touch with an Approved Intermediary. Although the process was slow, it was explained clearly to me and they suggested a DRN. While I was waiting for it to be approved, I kept thinking about the solution, wondering would it actually happen, or would they be looking for something else. I live in a council house. I don’t have anything else.


When I got the call to say it was approved, I felt absolute relief. All the weight just lifted off me. Now I know what’s what for the next 3 years. There are no letters or messages now. And things may change in 3 years time. If jobs pick up I hope to get back working. I’d recommend the ISI and an Approved Intermediary to anyone. I couldn’t believe the amount of help that was out there. I found them to be brilliant.

They both gave good, steady advice and set my mind at ease. My 13 year old son knew something was wrong before, so I was able to tell him “there’s a plan!”. Now he’s an awful lot happier. All I’d say is, if you’re struggling with debt, take a deep breath and get in touch with those who can help. Debt should never become a worry and if it is, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Is a Debt Relief Notice (DRN) right for me?

If you have a low income, few assets and debts of less than €35,000 that you can’t repay, then a DRN could be the right solution for you.

Help me choose the right debt solution

Actors’ voices have been used to protect the identities of the individuals involved. If you’ve been affected by any of the situations mentioned, talking to someone can help. Freephone the Samaritans on 116 123 or visit the Samaritans website.