Insolvency Service of Ireland An independent government organisation.

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Josephine’s Story


If you’re in any way like we were, don’t be afraid to look for the help. It’s so much better…


Background and circumstances

We’d been in arrears for a good few years on both the mortgage and our credit union loan. We tried to pay a little off each to keep everyone happy but we were getting calls mostly about the mortgage and the bank kept telling us that it was the most important one to keep on top of. It’s a vicious circle when you are trying to pay as much as you can.

We’re just an ordinary family, we’re not fraudsters. We are doing the best we can.

Meeting a PIP

When I realised things were not going to get better, I got in touch with a PIP. I thought, “well things can’t get much worse…” Almost immediately we felt a sense of relief. After our first meeting, where our options were explained properly to us, we came out feeling hopeful… we had initiated a process, we were doing something.

Our PIP stood between us and the bank- they dealt with him and they were off our backs. The sheer relief of that alone was fantastic. I could actually see the relief in my husband’s face – that some weight had been lifted…that’s such a clichéd thing to say but it’s true.


Waiting to see if it would all go through was hard. But when we found out it had been accepted, it was like winning the lotto! We were actually stress free in some way. We were nearly in tears thinking “Is this for real? Is it happening?” The kids used ask us what’s wrong and we’d say it’s hard to pay bills. Now it’s a relief that money is available for school.

When we first heard about meeting our PIP, we thought we’d be meeting a fella in a suit and he would be saying “how come you can’t afford to pay?”But he talked to us like two human beings. If you’re in any way like we were, don’t be afraid to look for the help. It’s so much better than facing it alone.

Is a PIA right for me?

A PIA is a formal agreement with all your creditors that will write off some of your unsecured debt and restructure any remaining secured debt.

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.