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UK Government promotes Social Tariffs through Debt Expert during Debt Awareness Week!

  As part of Debt Awareness Week, a Bengali newspaper, Potrika,  on behalf of the UK government promotes Social Tariffs so people can save money on their broadband and mobile phone during the cost of living crisis through Ripon Ray, Debt Expert. As we come near the end of winter 2022/3 yet inflation is high ways to save money are still important for struggling communities.
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Debt Talk: Small businesses & insolvency

During the cost of living crisis, the need for insolvency advice has been far greater than in the previous years as shown by Government’s data due to a rise in high inflation and change in consumer behaviour. In 2022 there has been a 56% increase in the number of companies going insolvent compared to 2021. In this episode of the Debt Talk podcast, Ripon Ray explored the financial challenges faced by small businesses and the inevitable advice needed from insolvency practitioners to save them. Robert Tame  ran a catering business. During the financial crisis, his business began to have a cash flow problem. But not every part of his business was struggling; so he had to prioritise his profit-making part of the business and make the inevitable decision to make his staff redundant. He was able to pull through due to meticulous financial planning and advice from an insolvency practitioner. He later sold his company with profit to a global company. Anita Pickersgill  spoke about how small bus

Former debt Advisers explained reasons for leaving Money Advice & Pension Service contract

On 13 March 2023 Unite the trade union organised a campaign against the cuts on debt advice services in the United Kingdom and highlighted the impact on debt advisers under a number of advice agencies under the the Money Advice & Pension Service contract. Advisers have also left debt advice work in droves due to stress and high targets. In this video, you can hear from two former debt advisers, who gave up working for MaPS contract through various advice agencies, because of stress and targets. Tanis Belsham-Wray , a former debt adviser, left debt advice work due to stress related to auditing, and pay conditions under the contract especially when she became a mother. Nick Webster , another former debt adviser, suffered from mental health breakdown and was in therapy due to stress at work. Mike Brown , a cancer patient who is in debt, reminds us of the importance of debt advice work.

Overcome the fear of opening your debt letters

As a debt adviser, I dealt with clients who have not opened their letters for months (if not years). It is hard for anyone when things go out of control, especially with debts.  If you are on your own, what you would do when you feel the world collapses right in front of you and your debts pile up?  Here are a few simple tips to guide you through the process. 1. Speak about the fear of not opening your letters  It is normal to feel afraid to avoid opening your letters. If you have ever been in therapy or counselling sessions for depression or trauma, your therapist will say that when you are in fear of an event or a situation, a natural human reaction to your problem is to shut down your problem or run away from it. When you have a debt problem, you respond the same way when you are in financial trouble and you avoid opening your letters from creditors due to fear. If you have been in touch with your local GP, he or she can refer you to free Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to address you

Monthly Debt News (March 2023)

(March 2023) Monthly Debt News looks at debts and the causes of debts in Britain from a variety of sources selected for professionals to make the debt sector simple ---------------- This month’s Debt News includes - extended energy bill support - FCA expects the debt sector to implement consumer duty - students in debt - Surrey Council insolvent - Bitesize stats. Energy bill support to be extended as price rise looms.  Support for energy bills from the government is expected to continue for three months from April, protecting consumers from an average increase of £500. Sky News understands the chancellor will cancel a reduction in support that would have seen typical annual bills rise from £2,500 to £3,000.  More here: Link (Sky) ---------------- FCA wrote to COA/Director on  21 February of Debt Advice sector to implement Consumer Duty  Consumer Duty is a significant shift in our expectations of firms. It introduces a more outcomes-focused approach to consumer protection and

Debt Talk: Council tax, debt & enforcement on Debt Talk (Episode 7)

(February 2023) In this month’s podcast on Debt Talk, Ripon Ray explored the current landscape for councils to recover council tax. Since the introduction of welfare reform over ten years ago, nearly every councils in the UK expect some forms of contributions from households regardless of many households were deemed too poor to pay prior to the introduction of the reform. At the same time, Britain has seen an increase in the recovery of council tax through the Magistrates' Courts. While the number of households in arrears has increased throughout the country, there has been a surge in the use of civil enforcement agents to recover priority debt. To explore this month’s topic, Ripon Ray spoke with panelists from the debt enforcement and debt advice sector to explore the current framework in which councils work and ways council tax has been recovered. Samantha Nurse  - Founder and CEO of Money Advice Hub spoke about the way councils throughout the UK charge council tax and the way th

Money Advice & Pension Service listened to debt experts from minority background

  Money Advice & Pension Service, one of the leading funders of debt advice and pension guidance in the UK, listened to debt experts from a variety of minority-led service providers and debt experts to understand the interlink between poverty and mental health within minority communities.  Ripon Ray was able to share his knowledge as a debt expert from the perspective of the Bangladeshi community in Britain based on his expert knowledge of debt advice and campaign work he carried out during the pandemic under the umbrella of BritBanglaCovid. There is a broad range of issues that impacted minority communities and some of the recommendations outlined by MaPS is welcome.  The challenge would be to implement the recommendations of the report for the benefit of minority communities since the pandemic exposed structural inequality in health and other spheres of minority life.