Vulnerable Customers Getting the help you need when you need it

Vulnerable Customer Support

At The Personal Finance Centre, we understand that anyone may experience vulnerability at any time in their life, sometimes without even recognising it.

We understand that people might find themselves in circumstances which are considered to be ‘vulnerable’ for a number of reasons including, health concerns, poor financial control, life events or personal circumstances, and therefore may need some additional help in order to manage their finances.

This is why we aim to provide a flexible service that is fair and inclusive for all people. A service that is respectful of each individual, regardless of their needs and personal circumstances. For more information on the support that we offer customers in vulnerable circumstances, please see the below resources.

Key Drivers of Vulnerability – Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Vulnerability Framework

You’re not alone!

“Vulnerability” captures a range of circumstances that our customers may face, which may pose a risk of financial harm or difficulty. Although people may not like to associate themselves with the word ‘vulnerable’ or even recognise it in themselves, we at The Personal Finance Centre are committed to supporting all of our vulnerable customers to make informed decisions on their loan options.

We will always treat customers fairly, taking care and time to understand their circumstances and offer additional support to them based on their individual needs. Our aim is to create a ‘safe space’, to encourage our customers to talk to us and let us know, if you feel you are experiencing vulnerability.

With your permission, we will make a note on your file about your circumstances and any support you may need throughout your journey with us, so you don’t have to mention it again. This means that whenever we speak with you, we are aware of your needs and tailor our approach to you. We will always deal with any information that you provide sensitively and confidentially.

Problems with Gambling

For most, gambling is something that is done for fun, from time to time. Yet for others, gambling can become something they cannot easily control, placing bets more regularly, perhaps on every sports game or frequently visiting a casino. People may find themselves placing increasingly higher bets to try and make up for their gambling losses.

Gambling may become an addiction, a part of someone’s day-to-day life and if not controlled, can cause serious financial harm. In some cases, individuals may take out additional credit to fund their gambling problem or to meet bills that they can’t pay due to financial loss.

If you’re having difficulty with gambling and addiction there are a number of support outlets for you.

Be Gamble Aware
Tel: 0808 8020 133 (Freephone 24-7 National Gambling Helpline)

Tel: 0808 8020 133

Citizen’s Advice
Tel: 0808 223 1133
Tel: 0808 223 1144

Safeguarding against scams

Anyone may fall victim to a scam, especially when they are masked as legitimate companies, looking and sounding like ‘the real deal’. Like with all financial abuse, scams and fraud can cause a great deal of emotional and financial stress. It is important to know that you are not alone and there is support out there.

If you have any questions or concerns or suspect you may have been a victim of fraud and want to report an incident, you should reach out to Action Fraud. Action Fraud is the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and cyber-crime.

Action Fraud
Report fraudulent/ scam activity.
Tel: 0300 123 2040

Arranging another person to speak on your behalf

Sometimes it can be easier to have someone you know and trust, by your side to support you with conversations around your finances. You may even want them to speak on your behalf. If you don’t already have a third party in place and you need help now, or in the future, you may want to look at setting up a trusted person as a Lasting Power of Attorney. An Attorney will be able to help you make decisions or make a decision on your behalf. You can access guidance on how to make, register or end a lasting Power of Attorney from the webpage shared below:

We will require your consent to speak to a third party on your behalf.

If you need help in the short term, you can speak to one of our trusted team members and ask them to add a third party of your choosing, to your file, who will then be able to speak to us on your behalf.

Getting the help you need when you need it – Useful Contacts

Sometimes it can be difficult to find the right help and information you need to support you. Although we are here to assist, we’re not the experts, so we will always recommend getting a little help from those who are.

Below are some resources that might be useful to you:

Stepchange is a debt advice charity.
Tel: 0800 138 1111

Citizens Advice
Advice line (England): 0800 144 8848
Advice line (Wales): 0800 702 2020

Works in partnership with people with a learning disability, and all services support people to live life as they choose.
Tel: 0808 808 1111

Telephone support service for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Tel: 0800 7311 888
Relay UK app (or Textphone): 0800 500 888

Tel: 0300 123 3393
Tel: 020 8519 2122

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