A lot of people have problems with money at some time in their lives. These can happen for all sorts of reasons and this publication aims to give some helpful advice and information on how to deal with money problems.
It is important to understand how you have got into financial trouble and to know how to start sorting out the problems.
Understanding your situation
A good place to start is to work out exactly how much you owe. You can then start addressing the problem.
However hard you try, you will not be able to stop spending altogether, so you should draw up a budget to monitor your essential finances. You should make two lists, one showing how much income you receive each month, and another showing all of your spending each month.
What to do next -– some rules
How we can help
We provide you with regular statements of your account. If these are needed more frequently, please ask us.
You can also check your balance or ask what items are coming in or going out of your account, either by visiting one of our branches or by phoning your branch. We may ask some questions to check your identity before giving information about your account. You can also check on-line if you have internet banking with us, or at most ATM's in the UK if you have a debit card.
If you have an overdraft or loan with us and are finding managing the debt difficult please talk to us as soon as possible. If we are aware of your problem and the steps you are taking to resolve them we will consider your case sympathetically. We may be able to restructure your borrowing with us and we will give you adequate time to prepare a repayment plan if you need to do so.
Helplines, information sources and organisations which may help
If you are in difficulties, you can also obtain help from debt-counselling and business support organisations. Four useful contacts which provide free advice are:
Citizens Advice Bureaux (www.adviceguide.org.uk or find local address and phone number in the phone book)
National Debtline (Call 0808 808 4000 www.nationaldebtline.co.uk).
Business Debtline (Call 0800 197 6026 http://www.bdl.org.uk)
StepChange Debt Charity - (Call 0800 138 1111 / www.stepchange.org)
Money Advice Service (Call 0300 500 5000 www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk)
The British Bankers Association (BBA) issues a helpful advice publication called '“Dealing with Debt'” which can be downloaded using the following link
There are numerous other organisations which provide help and advice, some of whom may charge for their services. You should always check what charges are going to be made before making any agreement with any of them. Details of some of these can be found on the useful websites page of the Lending Standards Board'’s website at
LENDING STANDARDS CODE
The Bank subscribes to the Lending Standards Code which is a self-regulatory Lending Code administered by the Lending Standards Board. The Code sets minimum standards of good service that you should expect from banks, building societies and other providers of banking services. The internet link of the Lending Standards Board's website is as follows
http://www.lendingstandardsboard.org.uk/thecode.html The Board's home website http://www.lendingstandardsboard.org.uk also contains detailed information and updates.