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What is debt review removal?

Debt review removal involves a process where a debt counsellor issues a clearance certificate to a consumer who has completed paying off their debts listed under debt review. According to the National Credit Regulator (NCR) debt review guidelines, this is one of the situations that qualifies a consumer for removal from debt review. Below, we explain other qualifying instances in detail.

The issuing of a debt review clearance certificate in this instance signals the end of a successful debt review process. In terms of the National Credit Act, a debt counsellor must issue the clearance certificate when the consumer has paid off all accounts under debt review. Here is the deal, only a registered debt counsellor can do this because he/she has access to the National Credit Regulator (NCR Debt Help System). The NCR Debt Help System is a database that lists all the people who have applied for debt review shows the status of their application and is linked to the credit bureaus

Debt Paid Off but Can’t Find Your Debt Counsellor? 

Before you approach anyone for debt review removal, there are really important things you need to know, what is possible or not. In terms of debt review guidelines, debt review removal or clearing your name from debt review can only be done based on the following instances:

  • If a consumer has withdrawn from debt review before the issuance of Form 17.2 (before being declared over-indebted).
  • When the consumer has settled all debt obligations and a clearance certificate has been issued (Section 71 (2) (b) (i) of the National Credit Act, 2005) (Note that this should not be costly or expensive as it is a very easy process and an attorney is not involved as there is no court process involved. 
  • If one has been under debt review and their circumstances have changed i.e. when their income has increased considerably and they are no longer over-indebted.  The consumer through the debt counsellor has to prove through an income and expenditure i.e. household budget. Note that this is only possible if the consumer does not have a court order in place. 
  • It is important to note that if there is a court order under debt review in place, it is no longer possible to approach the courts to rescind the order because the law has changed this. On 03 September 2019, the Johannesburg High Court delivered a judgment that changed the law and in this instance, it is no longer possible for one to exit debt review.

How long does it take to get off debt review?

At Debt Sage we are assisting consumers with debt review removal or to clear your name from debt review. You can approach Debt Sage to get help for debt review removal and you are issued with a clearance certificate and the debt review flag is removed/ lifted from the credit bureaus in 21 days maximum. Yes, that is how long it takes for one's name to be cleared from debt review after they have paid off their accounts and we have issued a clearance certificate. This depends on how credit bureaus are quick to remove the flag after we send certified Form 19 which is the clearance certificate to all credit bureaus with paid-up letters attached.

what is THE Debt Review Removal Process?

In the debt review removal process, we do the the following :

  • Pull up your credit report.
  • Obtain confirmation from credit providers in the form of paid-up/ prescribed letters. (If you have paid-up/ prescribed letter please forward them to us)
  • Update your status on NCR DHS to F2 status.
  • Generate Form 19.
  • Send Form 19 to all the credit providers.
  • Certify Form 19
  • Send certified Form 19 to all credit bureaus with paid-up letters attached.

We would need paid-up letters for all the accounts under debt review. Note that if we do not send paid-up letters to credit bureaus with the clearance certificate, they will not remove your debt review status from their records.

Contact Debt Sage, the debt review experts today, if you have finished paying off your debt and want debt review removal or to clear your name from debt review.

Can I apply for credit immediately after receiving my debt Clearance Certificate?

Once the credit bureaus are informed that you have finished paying off your debt and have updated the debt review flag on your credit profile, you can apply for credit. This update process typically takes about 21 business days. After this period, you are free to re-enter the credit market.

How We Can Assist with Your Credit Bureau Information?

Furthermore, If you feel uncertain about your information with credit bureaus, we can assist in the following ways:

  • obtaining your credit report and helping you study and understand the information listed on your credit report;
  • negotiating repayments to settle outstanding debts to have the information removed;
  • identifying information that qualifies for removal from your credit report, for example, in the event of the debt that has been prescribed in terms of the Prescription Act 68 of 1969;
  • identify information that does not qualify for removal, and advise what can be done to remove this information from your credit reports.

In South Africa, we have 3 leading credit bureaus namely:

Transunion -

Experian -



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