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Tackling your debts

Do you need breathing space from your debts?

Posted 14 May 2020

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Have financial difficulties due to coronavirus left you struggling with repayments on credit cards or other unsecured debts? If so, you might benefit from our free ‘breathing space’ service.

Is breathing space for me?

If you’re one of the millions of people in the UK living with uncertainty about your financial situation because of coronavirus, then it might help to have a period of breathing space from your lenders, to give you time for your financial situation to stabilise.

How does breathing space work?

If you need breathing space, here’s what we’ll do.

  • • We’ll ask all your lenders to give you a payment break for up to three months. (With your permission, we’ll run a quick credit report to make sure we have a complete list of all your unsecured debts.)
  • • We’ll also ask them to freeze interest, and any further charges, so the amount you owe doesn’t go up while you’re unable to pay.
  • • And we’ll ask them not to take any action to enforce the debts during that breathing space period.
  • • We don’t charge a fee for our breathing space service.

Do my lenders have to agree to breathing space?

We can’t guarantee that your lenders will agree to give you three months’ breathing space, freeze interest and charges or take further action – but the majority of lenders have agreed that they will.

What happens at the end of the three months?

One of our advisers will contact you again towards the end of the breathing space period.

Hopefully, by then your finances will be back under control, so you’ll be able to start making repayments again.

But if you’re still in financial difficulty at that point, you might need a longer-term solution to deal with your debts. We’ll help you find one that’s suitable for you.

If your circumstances stabilise sooner, but you still can’t afford your repayments, then get in touch and we can help you with a longer-term solution. Although we won’t charge for any debt advice we provide, there may be charges associated with the debt solution you select and entering into a debt solution may affect your credit rating.

How do I apply for breathing space from my debts?

To speak to one of our team, give us a call on 0161 413 9569. They’ll ask you some questions about your finances and work out whether breathing space is suitable for you.

You can find information on our debt solutions page about other ways to help get your finances back on track.

by Christine Walsh

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.