A very varied set of articles this week. My pick of last week’s news is Amigo announces proceeding with Scheme.
Tweet of the week
The overwhelming case against cutting Universal Credit: not the pandemic, but the extraordinary cuts to unemployment-related benefits over the last four decades.https://t.co/2PVrbLVBAD pic.twitter.com/2PbwYpMrYo
— Jonathan Portes (@jdportes) January 24, 2021
Amigo announces proceeding with Scheme RNS: my comments on this here: Amigo’s Scheme (1) timetable for approval & how it may work.
Cladding crisis: ‘I was a first-time buyer at 27, and bankrupt at 28’ BBC: Overwhelmed with the extra costs of dealing with the problems, she had to hand back her keys.
Shielding pensioner left ‘a bag of nerves’ as bailiff demands parking debt Somerset Live: Angie Leach claimed that the enforcement agent was not wearing a facemask
Financial Ombudsman ‘must sharpen up’ amid rising cases BBC: It told the Treasury Committee in November that 38,000 cases had not been allocated to a handler, at least eight weeks after receiving the complaint.
- my suggestions on how FOS cases could be speeded up are in this recent blog: Lessons from Amigo – FOS complaint handling needs to be faster
Changes to the SCA-RTS and to the guidance in ‘Payment Services and Electronic Money new FCA consultation.
2nd edition DRO A-Z guidance Insolvency Service – on IMA website, accessible to members and free sector advisers.
Ad ban for debt advice firms highlights problem of misleading claims Guardian: People can be drawn in by lead generators who pass on details to firms offering paid-for help.
Barclaycard customers face higher minimum payments BBC: The new requirements are tailored to each customer, although some may see a significant rise in demands.
VW Financial Services told me I’d paid off my late husband’s car but then demanded an extra £13,000 – is this fair treatment? Mail: Debt collector mistakenly offered a full and final settlement figure that was paid – it was actually the figure to terminate the contract and hand back the car.
Benefits & other news
More than one in six struggling to afford broadband Citizens Advice: In December, regulator Ofcom found that if households were paying the average £37 a month for landline and broadband, this would take around four times the proportion of a low-income household’s budget, compared to an average household.
Banks defy watchdog Financial Conduct Authority’s plea – and just carry on shutting branches Mail: Barclays, Lloyds and TSB have all confirmed to The Mail on Sunday that their plans to shut between them more than 160 branches in the first three months of this year will not change.
New legal aid ‘mortgage cap’ rules now in force Public Law Project: If you have been refused legal aid recently
due to the value of your property, you should check again to see if you are now eligible.
Three in 10 people cannot afford a minimum standard of living Loughborough Uni: This research was on pre-pandemic data.
Sport faces end of gambling cash in biggest crisis since tobacco ban Times (paywall): This is the lead story in the Sunday Times. Gambling logos may be banned from sports shirts in the biggest shake-up of advertising in professional sport since tobacco promotion was outlawed.
Covid and ethnicity – an economic perspective FCA Insight: BAME individuals who had been employed in February were significantly more likely to have exited employment at some point during the pandemic.
Free school meals: Families who don’t qualify ‘struggling’, review told BBC: All families on Universal Credit should qualify for free school meals, a Welsh Government review has been told.