What to do if you have debt with Barclays
Barclays plc is a UK high street bank, with its origins dating back to 1690. Nowadays, Barclays is one of the ‘Big Four’ banks, offering its customers a range of financial products and services. Among these, Barclays provides mortgages, personal loans, credit cards and overdrafts.
Barclays is authorised and regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Barclays adheres to The Standards of Lending Practice of The Lending Standards Board.
Why Are Barclays Contacting Me?
If you miss payments on your account, Barclays are likely to get in touch soon afterwards to find out what’s gone wrong, particularly if you haven’t contacted them first to let them know you wouldn’t be able to pay.
Should I Ignore The Letters And Calls?
Ignoring communications about your debt is a bad idea and will likely only cause you further hassle in the long-run. Problems also become more difficult to face up to, the longer you try to hide from them.
What Should I Tell Barclays?
You should let Barclays know why you are having difficulty making payments and be honest about your financial situation. Perhaps your circumstances have recently changed? Many people fall behind with payments, through no fault of their own, because of redundancy, illness or other unforeseen situations.
I Can’t Afford To Pay
Tell Barclays if you are unable to pay at the moment. Explain your current financial situation. If you can’t afford to settle your debt, you might be able to come to an agreement to pay an affordable monthly amount towards it instead.
Making An Offer
Before you jump into another financial commitment, you must make sure you have given consideration to your day-to-day living costs and priority debts. Don’t be pressured into paying more than you can reasonably manage, otherwise you could put your self at risk of further financial difficulty in the future.
A simple, but effective, way to work out the affordability of a payment plan is to work out a budget. Make an offer of repayment that you can afford, even if it is only a small amount each month.
Banks And The Right To Set Off
You need to be careful if you have debts with the same bank that you have a current account or savings account with. This is because of something called ‘the right to set off’.
Setting off means a bank can take your available funds from one account to clear the amount owing on another. For example, you have your salary paid into a Barclays current account, but owe money on your Barclaycard – Barclays can take money from your current account balance to make a payment to your credit card account.
The Setting-Off Process
Barclays do not have to give you advanced warning if they are going to set off your accounts. The standard procedure is not to warn customers, so they can’t move their money out of the account.
You will be notified afterwards to tell you what has happened. Barclays must not leave you unable to afford your day-to-day living expenses, so if you have been placed in further hardship by Barclays taking money, you can ask for a refund. You may be able to get some or all of the money back, but you will still need to pay the debt.
What Can I Do To Stop Barclays Chasing Me?
You may not be able to stop all contact from Barclays, but you can request that they communicate with you in writing to prevent unwanted calls and texts about your account.
You can also ask Barclays to give you ‘breathing space’. This is a temporary reprieve (usually at least 30 days) from unnecessary contact. Breathing space allows you time to evaluate your situation and ability to pay, and gives you the opportunity to seek professional debt advice. The idea is that giving you breathing space will encourage you to take steps to address your debt problem, increasing the likelihood of you being able to repay.
How Can I Stop My Debt Increasing?
Are Barclays charging you interest on your debt? Barclays can continue to apply interest to your debt in line with the terms and conditions of your original credit agreement. If you are being charged interest, you can ask Barclays to freeze it. When you are facing financial hardship, Barclays must consider your request to freeze interest.
Debt Advice From Scottishtrustdeed.co.uk
If you feel out of your depth, you should consult a debt specialist like Scottishtrustdeed.co.uk. We can assist you with your debt problem. Money worries can weigh heavily on your mind, but our advisors are highly trained and can help you find a workable solution.
We offer a range of debt management solutions, including:
- Scottish Trust Deed
- Debt Arrangement Scheme
- Debt Management Plan
- Debt Consolidation Loan
- Minimal Asset Process
- Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA)
What Will Happen If I Ignore Barclays Or Don’t Pay?
If you don’t attempt to make a payment arrangement with Barclays, they may pass your debt on to a debt collection agency, who will contact you on their behalf. Alternatively, they may seek to take court action against you.
How Will Non-Payment Affect My Credit Rating?
Failure to pay your account may result in a default being noted on your credit file. This will remain on your record for six years, even once your debt has been settled. If action is taken against you, this could cause further damage to your credit score.
A poor credit rating will affect your ability to obtain credit from lenders, and the rates which you are offered.
If you are unhappy with Barclays, you can make a complaint in writing and send your letter to:
Freepost Barclays Customer Relations
You do not need to include a stamp to send your letter to the freepost address. You can also make a complaint in-branch, online or over the phone.
If, after Barclays have investigated and given you their final response, you are still not happy, you can refer your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
The Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London, E14 9SR
I’ve got more than one debt – how do I know who to pay?
You should seek advice from a debt specialist like Scottishtrustdeed.co.uk who can help you work out which debts are the highest priority and how best to manage them all.
Will I be able to get credit in the future?
Your credit rating can be repaired, so your current financial problems may not prevent you from getting credit in the future. You can take steps to demonstrate that you are able to manage your finances responsibly.
Should I change banks?
Yes. You should always keep your savings separate from your debts, so you should have your main bank account elsewhere.