'Get help' warning over payday loan debts

First published in News

People in Bradford who are falling into debt because of payday loans are being urged to get in touch with the Financial Ombudsman if they need help.

The ombudsman said that there had been a considerable rise in the number of payday lending complaints brought to them this year.

“We have seen a large increase in the number of enquiries and are currently taking on around 50 new cases a month,” their spokesman said.

“From April to December 2012 we received 387 new complaints, this compares to the 296 complaints brought to our service during the whole of 2011/12 and we are currently upholding about three-quarters 72 per cent of cases in favour of the consumer.

“Many of the inquiries we receive never go on to become full complaints. This may be because when payday lenders are aware that the ombudsman might step in they take the opportunity to resolve the disputes.

“However, many people we’ve spoken to are reluctant to admit they’re struggling financially – and it’s likely that a significant proportion of people who’ve taken out these loans don’t know their rights. Or indeed, many may simply give up.”

The main complaint themes seen by the ombudsman were that the loan was unaffordable and should not have been given in the first place, the charges being applied to the loan are too high, the loan provider will not accept a suitable repayment plan and complaints from people saying they never took out the payday loan and their name and details have been used fraudulently.

For help or advice call 0300 123 9 123 or financial-ombudsman.org.uk

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