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How to save your self employed business

As a self employed business owner you remain personally liable for any debt that the business incurs which it cannot repay. If your business fails or is struggling and you cannot afford to repay its debts, the solution you need to use will be a personal debt management solution. We describe some of those options in this article.

How to save your self employed business

Self employed business people are personally liable for any debts that their business cannot repay. However there are a number of solutions that may be considered to avoid personal financial crisis.

If you are self employed, you may work on your own as a sole trader or you may be in charge of a larger business with a number of employees. However, you are defined as self employed by the fact that your business is not registered as a limited company.

Because the business is not limited, if it gets into financial difficulty, it cannot use corporate solutions such as a company voluntary arrangement or pre-pack administration (Phoenix) to resolve the problem.

As the owner, you remain personally liable for any debt that the business incurs which it cannot repay. If your business fails or is struggling and you cannot afford to repay its debts, the solution you need to use will be a personal debt management solution.

Self Employed Personal debt solutions to consider

Generally, a self employed business person will need to consider one of three debt management solutions.

The first option is a debt management plan (DMP), which is an informal agreement with creditors to reduce debt repayments to an affordable manageable level.

The advantage of a DMP is that it is flexible. This means that some debts, either business or personal can be left out of the plan. However, the downside of this agreement is that all of the debt has to be repaid in full which will often take many years.

For larger debts (generally GBP18,000 and above) consider an individual voluntary arrangement (IVA). This is an agreement with creditors to settle the debt owed over a period of 5 years. After the end of the plan, what has not been paid is written off.

The IVA has the advantage over a debt management plan in the way that debt is written off and therefore there is a fixed date when the debts will be gone for good. However, the IVA is less flexible than a DMP in the sense that all debts both business and personal need to be included. The arrangement may also require equity to be released from the family home.

Thirdly, unlike directors of limited companies, self employed business people can also consider declaring bankruptcy. Being bankrupt does not prevent a self employed person from carrying on their business and can write off 100% of debt.

The great disadvantage of bankruptcy is that if you are a home owner, your property could be at risk. However, if you are a sole trader with no property, bankruptcy could be an ideal solution.

In today’s economic environment, many self employed business people are finding it increasingly difficult to survive. If you find that your business gets into financial difficulty you need to be aware that you are personally responsible for any business debt.

If you find yourself in this situation, it is important to get advice about your options as soon as possible. The sooner you take action to employ a debt management solutionPsychology Articles, the more likely it will be that you can avoid disaster and continue to trade your business without the worry and burden of debt.

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