Moneywise Credit Union has raised concerns about loan sharks taking advantage of people who have been affected financially by the Covid-19  outbreak and who might be considering borrowing money.

A money lender has to be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to lend money legally. Money lenders who aren’t authorised by the FCA are breaking the law. They are known as loan sharks. If you are not sure what a loan shark is, ask yourself the following questions. If you can answer yes to one or more you might be borrowing from a loan shark:

  • Did they offer you a cash loan?
  • Did they refuse to give you paperwork?
  • Did they add huge amounts of interest or APR to your loan?
  • Have they threatened you?
  • Are you scared of people finding out?
  • Have they taken your bank card, benefit card, passport, watch or other valuables from you?

Changing Lives does not provide financial advice. If you are struggling financially, we recommend reaching out to an independent advisor for support. You can find more advice on how to do this on the Citizen’s Advice website.

If you do decide to borrow money, there are safer ways to do this than through a loan shark. Credit Unions can support people with affordable, legal loans and have options for people with poor financial histories. You can find your local Credit Union here: www.findyourcreditunion.co.uk.

You can find out more about Credit Unions and what you can do if you have borrowed money from a Loan Shark, here:

This information is provided to make people aware of the dangers of loan sharks. It is not financial advice. Changing Lives recommends seeking independent financial advice before making any decisions about your finances.

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