My pick of last week’s news is Council tax collection inquiry.
Our appeal to Caroline Siarkiewizc, Chief Executive of the Money and Pensions Service We Are Debt Advisers: We are writing to alert you to the hugely damaging impact of the current procurement exercise on debt advice provision and to ask that you now extend the current grant contracts in order to avoid a complete breakdown of community based supply this winter.
From 1/1/22 we should refer clients to the contact centre for casework. Not if:
You’re deaf – no BSL
You can’t read/write
Need local networking
Not suitable for phone advice
Is too vulnerable
Already had debt advice
That’s all our clients then! Where do they go @MoneyPensionsUK
— Sylvia Simpson (@Dickerbird) November 24, 2021
Suicides linked to HMRC cash demands in ‘loan charge’ tax bills Guardian: Self-employed and contractors including nurses and social workers hit over ‘disguised remuneration schemes’
Visa, Amex or Mastercard: why shops may be about to get picky Times (paywall): “the murky world of retail charges that we as customers know nothing about.”
Call for urgent regulation of UK’s buy-now-pay-later lenders Guardian: Labour MP Stella Creasy says failure to act will have severe repercussions for consumers this Black Friday and Christmas
Council tax collection inquiry launched ParliamentaryHousing, Communities and Local Government (HCLG) Committee: Looking at the practices employed by local authorities to collect council tax arrears: whether there should be changes to the legislation on the recovery of council tax arrears, and how local authority council tax support schemes affect council tax collection rates.
Largest debt amassed by student in England is £189,700 Guardian: Student Loan Company reveals ‘exceptional case’ after Freedom of Information request.
New 40-year mortgage could ‘make all the difference’ for struggling first-time buyers – but are they cheaper than short-term deals? Mail: As a rule of thumb, if rates rise sharply, a long-term borrower will be quids in. But if interest rate rises are more gentle, then a better strategy may be to take out shorter fixed rate loans and then keep remortgaging.
Benefits, Poverty & other news
Money and mental health in a time of crisis MMHPI: Addressing the link between financial difficulty and serious mental health problems should be at the heart of the pandemic recovery plans to give people a better chance of recovering from both.
Three million families facing crisis as cost of living crunch bites Citizens Advice: even if living on a minimal budget – the financial plan its advisers use to support people through a debt management process – more than three million households would be in the red or unable to cover the essentials.
DWP blanks out entire report on support for ‘vulnerable’ universal credit claimants Disability News: the report was “exempt” from release because – under section 36 of the Freedom of Information Act – DWP believed that releasing it would be damaging “to the effective conduct of public affairs”.
My elderly parents were conned out of £284 over home appliances insurance Guardian: Firms claiming to have taken over from Domestic & General have become a common problem
- Bulb collapses into ‘special administration’ – what it means for your gas and electricity MSE
- Poor regulation, not price cap, to blame for energy market mayhem FT (paywall): Mistake was to let companies take big commodity price risks backed in effect by the state
Drivers face £70 fines as councils given more powers to punish ‘minor’ offences Mirror: Councils are to be given the power to issue fines for “moving traffic” offences which can include stopping in yellow junctions and performing bad turns
News round-ups are published every Sunday.
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