A young man from Lahti left his job due to fatigue. He planned to take a break for a few months, which he prepared for by paying his rent several months in advance.
At the same time, Kela initiated the recovery of overpaid housing benefits, which took the man to the first EUR 2,000 quick lever draw. However, the loan amount sank into sports betting, resulting in a gambling addiction.
The young man sought help from debt counseling, but no help came. Just a wish: “good luck on your journey”.
He dared to talk about his difficulties to his father. The father took out a € 25,000 bank loan to help his son.
The boy initially repaid his loans, but the gambling cravings did not subside and the quick raises rose to 73,000 euros.
Eight months after the first quick tip, he filed a debt settlement application with the Päijät-Häme District Court. The application was rejected even though the young man had been given a permanent job.
The help was finally found in the Court of Appeal of Eastern Finland, which approved the debt settlement in the first week of June, and it is possible to break the debt spiral due to the incomprehensibility of youth.
The case of a 25-year-old Lahti resident is not quite an ordinary debt settlement solution. He worked a long day and got tired. In my opinion, the salary was a little behind the working edition.
He was unable to control his spending, even though the expenditure was actually quite small. As an education, he has a bachelor's degree in business administration.
After leaving his job, the man just didn’t have time to look for a new job when the gambling addiction took over. He was constantly taking out a new loan in the hope that one day he would be able to pay off all his tricks as long as the bets were in place. Instead of winning pots, there was shame.
He says his sense of reality is completely blurred, and in an instant the loan pot was tens of thousands of euros.
After the gambling had taken the young man for a few months and the number of loans was already close to 30, he opened up his problems to his father. The father did not leave his struggling son alone with his difficulties.
With the loan raised by the father, not all of his tricks could be taken care of by the son, and he tore into the loan thread again.
The new job was arranged at the right time and the young man began to repay the loan he had received from his father. Credit information was still left for a while, but soon the first debts went into foreclosure.
The economy went tight, but the experience benefited the young man, according to a debt settlement application. He learned to live on a low income, accepted his situation and decided to overcome his problems.
The largest creditors gave their opinion on the application. The father was willing to settle the debt, but the largest credit institution opposed the application and resented the use of the credits for gambling. It considered the expenditure to be reprehensible and demanded that the application be rejected.
The applicant admitted that he did not fully understand what he was doing when raising the loans. It wasn’t until the loan taps closed that he got help with his gambling addiction and understood his own condition.
In February, the district court rejected the young man's debt settlement application. Debts amounted to more than EUR 73,000 and cash and cash equivalents with net income of EUR 1,555 amounted to EUR 528. Of the liabilities, EUR 68,400 had been taken over in eight months. Gaming debts accounted for 94 percent of the total, with the remainder being mostly student loans.
According to the court ruling, the man became irresponsibly indebted and lost control of his life. Through foreclosure, he has paid about 5,000 euros. He pays his father 425 euros a month.
However, the District Court finds that employment shows a social commitment and a desire to fulfill one’s obligations and welcomes the fact that the applicant voluntarily pays his debts.
However, the short indebtedness period spoke out against the approval of the debt settlement. An arrangement is generally not granted if the liabilities are fairly new. The indebtedness was reckless and irresponsible in the opinion of the district court, and it did not find any compelling reasons mentioned in the law that would have supported the debt settlement.
The debtor was not satisfied with the decision of the district court and appealed to the Eastern Finland Court of Appeal. He relied on the compelling reasons mentioned in the Debt Settlement Act and considered that his age and inexperience in monetary matters had led to debt and gambling addiction.
The law on compelling reasons changed five years ago. According to the law, a debt settlement can be granted for special compelling reasons. In connection with the revision of the Debt Settlement Act, the preliminary works of the law have highlighted the debt spiral caused by the incomprehension of youth, which can lead to over-indebtedness and exclusion. One of the aims of the review is to make it easier for young people to access debt.
The Court of Appeal approved the young man's debt arrangement on compelling grounds. The decision was influenced by the debtor's desire to settle his debts, his permanent job and the measures to pay his debts. Less than two years had passed since the end of the young person's indebtedness before the appellate court proceedings.
The elapsed time was not in favor of granting the arrangement, but it was not clear against it either, the Court of Appeal states. The ground of impediment applied to the decision does not show as much reproach in the applicant's indebtedness as, for example, in the case of indebtedness based on a serious crime.
The legal effects of the debt settlement began immediately after the decision of the Court of Appeal. The Päijät-Häme District Court is still dealing with the matter.