Last year, 13.8 thousand debt management plans (DMPs) were imposed by Dutch courts. After two years of dramatic increase, the number declined marginally in 2012. Three quarters of DMPs concluded in 2012 ended debt free.
Fewer private individuals
In 2012, 11.3 thousand private individuals and 2.4 thousand self-employed were admitted to a debt restructuring scheme. The current total of 13.8 thousand is 7 percent below the level of one year previously. The most substantial decline occurred among private individuals. In 2010 and 2011, the number of DMPs still grew considerably by nearly 30 percent annually. The downward trend in 2012 is amazing since rising unemployment, more bankruptcies and the poor situation on the housing market have put many people in an awkward financial position.
DMPs imposed by Dutch courts
Highest proportion of DMPs in Flevoland
Last year, 104 in every 100 thousand residents in the Netherlands aged 18 years or older had debts which had to be restructured, i.e. 8 fewer than in 2011. There are substantial differences between the Dutch provinces. Proportionally, the highest number of DMPs was imposed in Flevoland and Groningen, the lowest number in Gelderland and Utrecht. The ratio ranged between 55 per 100 thousand residents in Utrecht to 222 per 100 thousand residents in Flevoland in 2012.
DMPs by province
Three quarters debt free after more than 3 years
In 2012, nearly 10 thousand DMPs were concluded; 73 percent ended with a so-called clean slate, i.e. the court decides that the remaining part of the debt is no longer claimable. This share has declined since last year after years of increase. The DMPs concluded last year covered an average period of 3 years and 3 months. A small part ends after an agreement is reached with the creditors or a bankruptcy is filed. In nearly 20 percent of cases, the DMP fails or is concluded for other reasons, e.g. the debtor does not comply with the conditions or has received an inheritance. By the end of 2012, nearly 40 thousand people were engaged in DMPs.
DMPs concluded by manner of termination