Question about UK debt while living in Ireland.


New Member

I emigrated from Ireland to the UK between the years 2010 to 2014. Over this period, I took out an overdraft with Lloyds TSB for £700 and a phone contract with O2. I increased my overdraft limit to £1500 due to reckless spending. I returned to Ireland in early 2015 and was paying back all my debts until June ‘15. I lost my job as I was drinking heavily, partying and didn’t pass my probation. I literally stopped transferring money over to the Lloyds account to cover both of these payments. The sterling euro exchange was already crippling me when I had a job, now with no income I let the accounts default in October ‘15.

I have since managed to return to college, have a new career and in recovery from addiction. My Irish credit history is quite good and I am now applying for a mortgage with my partner. However, I want to clear up my UK debt - I ignored it for far too long and feel like it wasn’t morally right to take money and services and run off without paying. I am also afraid that my Irish bank will request a UK credit report and even though my credit history is strong in Ireland, defaulting on a loan with a bank is a big no no.

After registering with the site Check My File in the UK, I found my UK credit rating. 355/1000, pretty shite. I owe TSB - £2730 and O2s debt collector Lowell Financial -£650. Both of which I can clear off now because I have money saved up for a deposit and am willing to get this monkey off my back in case it hurts my chances of getting a mortgage. This isn’t the first time I’ve made progression in trying to resolve this (albeit quite halfarsed). I phoned Lloyd’s TSB in 2017, saying I was willing to settle the debt and want to know the best way forward. The customer service advisor asked me to send them a letter with my details and contact information with an explanation why I went into debt to their debt collections office (internal to TSB). They told me they’d get back in touch once this was done, I sent it all off on registered post but never heard from them since. Lowell got in touch with me via email in 2016 but never got back to me.

I sought advise from another forum over this and the advice was that no matter whether I cleared off my debt at this stage, my credit rating has tanked. It will stay in the shitter until the 6 years are up. If an Irish bank asks to see my uk credit rating for whatever reason, it will not be pleasant viewing. Do Irish banks check do credit searches on potential customers who have no declared living in the UK (for example, we applied for our mortgage with Ulster and they never once asked me if I lived abroad. I think AIB do ask for a credit report if you confirm you lived abroad).

Aside from the moral standpoint of this matter, would I be just better off settling the debt and let the Irish banks decide if my uk credit rating matters or not. As I said, my Irish credit rating is quite good and I’ve never been turned down for loans / credit card since I moved back. Or would it even matter if the banks in Ireland don’t do credit reports outside of the ICB report?

I am aware what I did was wrong and I sat on my arse for years rather than fix it up front. It took me ages to acknowledge and come to terms with my own issues, this is possibly the last major consequence I have because of my reckless spending on drinking and would like to face it head on.

Also worth noting that approx £1300 of the TSB debt is interest applied by the bank. Should I try and settle with the bank for the original money owed?