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National Campaigns
Pay Day Loans: September 12 - April 14

During the last 4 years CAB saw a ten-fold increase in the number of debt clients with pay day loans.

Evidence collected demonstrated  that pay day loan companies were not treating customers fairly. They were breaking regulations and guidance regarding responsible lending.

Citizens Advice had concerns around the glossy advertising practices of pay day loan lenders, which were often irresponsible and misleading, masking the reality of debt.

The CAB service wanted pay day lenders to be properly regulated and to stop them using irresponsible lending tactics.

How did they achieve this? 

In 2012 the industry introduced a good practice customer charter in their codes of practice.

•Clients who had experience of pay day lenders were encouraged to take the pay day loan survey
•This demonstrated pay day lenders were not adhering to the charter and tougher rules were needed for pay day lenders 

Our evidence was then given to the government and press which raised awareness about payday loans and consumers rights. Supporters were advised to get 'Mad about the ad' and report misleading advertisements to the Advertising Standards Agency. 

The Results

New Rules were put in place for for pay day lenders and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has now taken over the regulation of the industry and immediately carried out an in-depth review into payday lenders’ debt collection practices. Citizens Advice also agreed to share our evidence of payday lender behaviour with the FCA so they can take action to protect consumers.

Waiting for Credit: The delivery of Universal Credit as experienced by Citizens Advice clients in England and Wales

Pennine West Citizens Advice office joined 15 other offices to research the impact of the delivery of Universal Credit on Citizens Advice clients. Between them the 16 local offices cover each stage of the rollout of Universal Credit including the digital service and, up to June 2015 when the fieldwork was completed, had seen one third of all Citizens Advice clients in England and Wales who had been given advice about Universal Credit.

 

The report sets out the results of the research carried out by these local offices into how the delivery of Universal Credit is affecting their clients. About one in ten of all Citizens Advice clients in England and Wales who had been given advice about Universal Credit between June 2014 and June 2015 were interviewed for the research.

 

The research highlights the difficulty clients had waiting at least six weeks for their first payment of Universal Credit and some of the administrative and structural problems that often further delay payment. It found that 4 in 5 Citizens Advice clients who have claimed Universal Credit have difficulty managing to pay their rent, and afford to pay for food and gas and electricity whilst waiting for their first payment.

The report can be found here

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