Television and radio presenter, Miquita Oliver, has talked openly about her battle with bankruptcy.
Declared bankrupt in February of last year, Oliver was left financially vulnerable after she found herself unable to pay a £174,000 tax bill. Promoting an upcoming documentary about the dangers of hiding financial troubles, she revealed that she did not tell anyone about her bankruptcy status for over two years.
Becoming famous at a young age, Oliver admits that the money she was making was too much to handle for a 17-year-old. She said: “At 17 I was earning money I didn’t know how to handle and before I knew it I owed thousands to the taxman. I just felt like I couldn’t breathe and that I was sinking. I was so scared about my future and I didn’t tell anyone for 2 years.
“I went bankrupt and then I didn’t tell anyone. I had a drawer that I hadn’t opened that was just [full] of bankruptcy letters. I remember I took all the letters, put them on [the] balcony and just set light to them. Obviously when it came out in the papers that’s when I was more upset for mum because I felt really bad that it was all like really public and I felt like that must have been a really horrible thing to have your daughter in the papers making such a big mistake.”
However, the former T4 presenter admits that in hindsight, the bankruptcy has allowed her to take control of her finances. Speaking about her experiences since, she said: “My mum calls it ‘The Humbling’ and it was humbling because it’s true it drags you down to ground zero and makes you look at everything, you have to look at yourself.”
In the documentary, Oliver sets out to understand how many other young people misunderstand their earnings, debt management and tax responsibilities.