A guide to
Travelling Abroad With Debt

Guide Chapters


What Happens If I Move and Leave My Debts Behind


Moving and
Having Debt


Can I Go Bankrupt in The UK if I Move Abroad?


Can My Creditors Chase Me for Payment in Other Countries?


What if I Move Back to The UK & Leave Debts in Other Countries?

Chapter 5

What if I Move Back to The UK and Leave Debts in Other Countries?

Having explored moving out of the UK and leaving debts in the UK, the opposite can occur as well. We have moved to another country, taken out a loan, maybe bought a property, received a credit card, and now have obligations in that new country, and for whatever reason, we decide, or have to move back to the UK.

What happens now?

The same happens.

Your creditors in the other countries may try to collect what is owed to them, and may chase you for payment back here in the UK.

However, the same old issue arises, do the creditors from the other countries have authority here in the UK to collect a debt/account??

If it is an EU based bank or creditor, then yes, they may have authority.

Outside of the EU, probably not, they do not have authority. This may not stop them from trying as we know.

Currency value down

The foreign creditor could very well sell the account onto a collection agency here in the UK and have it collected in accord with the laws here. In addition, if the contract for the loan/account has a “non-exclusive jurisdiction” clause in it, then the account may be assigned out to an agent of the bank/lender in another country to be collected in accord with that country’s laws.

You must also keep in mind if either of these two situations were to occur, be it a debt sold to a UK collection agency, or assigned to an agent of the lender to be collected here in the UK, you as a debtor have all the tools and debt options available to you that we have here in the UK.

You can go bankrupt, include the debts in an IVA, Debt Management Plan, Debt Relief Order, any of our debt and insolvency options are available to you, even if the debt originated in another country.

Futuristic City


One cannot discuss returning to the UK with debts abroad without mentioning the country or city of Dubai.

Many ex-pats from England go to Dubai to work and holiday, and many stay on to live.

You are required to have a Visa to live and work there, and your Visa is usually attached in some way to your job. Should you lose your job, you can lose your Visa to stay and may need to move.

Banking laws in Dubai are what they are, some feel antiquated and old, but it is their rules and laws they live by.

If you have a loan, it is paid by cheques you write, and each month these are debited from your account.

Should a cheque “bounce” or fail to clear to pay a payment, this is considered a crime, a criminal offence.

What can occur is that if you cannot pay a debt, maybe you lost your job there in Dubai, and the bank wishes to, they can have a warrant issued for your arrest and you can be imprisoned.

Naturally if you lose your job, and possibly your Visa to stay in the country, you may wish to move back home, where ever home is, the UK or elsewhere, to avoid imprisonment.

There is a settlement fund for citizens of the UAE which can aid them, in addition, there have been some proposals and changes to reduce the number of people jailed due to owing debts, however, do you want to be there to find out these changes first-hand.

I think now we know the answer to an age old question of moving if we have debts, and we wish to leave those debts behind.

We can leave the debts behind, here in the UK or in other countries, however, there are implications and outcomes from doing this that we need to be aware of.