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Financial Difficulties

COVID-19

If as a result of the Covid-19, you are experiencing temporary financial difficulty then we are here to help you find the right solution for your circumstances.  

We encourage you to ensure that you have taken advantage of any government support and assistance that may be available to you. The government’s website can be accessed at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus.

There is useful guidance about employment, financial support and money including:

  • If you are unable to work, for example if someone in your household is ill
  • If you are on furlough
  • If you have lost your job
  • If you are self-employed and your work has reduced or you have no work
  • If you are on benefits 

There is also specific information for business and self-employed people which details support available including potential loans, grants and tax relief.

If you are not in financial difficulty but worried that you might be in the future, or want to understand more, we'd encourage you to review this guidance information and take the opportunity to contact organisations that may be able to help.

What evidence might I need to provide?

In order to assist with your enquiry, we may need evidence to understand your financial circumstances in more detail the types of evidence we might ask for are as follows:

  • Evidence that you have sought any government support available to you, for example, sick pay, universal credit, small business loans.
  • If you have been furloughed and your income has reduced then evidence of your payslips and expenditure through bank account information. 
  • If you have lost your job then we need confirmation from your employer, evidence of your income and expenditure through bank account information and details of your unemployment claim.

The above list is not exhaustive and different evidence may be required depending on your circumstances and the reasons for your financial difficulties. 

Other options

If you are experiencing longer term difficulties due to Covid-19 then there may be other options that you wish to consider. 

Payment Waiver

If you have been made redundant involuntarily then you may be able to use the Payment Waiver feature to ask us to waive up to 6 monthly payments. To check if your agreement includes Payment Waiver you can find out more information here.

Adjusting your Agreement 

End your contract and/or enter into a new contract 

You might want to change the amount you pay each month by entering into a new contract for another vehicle and pay less. You could do this for example by part exchanging your vehicle for another. If you want to end your agreement early you have two options; (1) you could early settle (and part exchange if it suits you) which means paying the total amount owed minus any interest rebate; or (2) you could voluntary terminate, as long as you pay at least 50% of the total amount payable, you’d also need to return the vehicle to us. If you are interested in a different vehicle and would like information about any offers that may be available to you then you can indicate this on our online form.

Voluntary Termination 

If you have a Conditional Sale or Personal Contract Purchase agreements regulated by the Consumer Credit Act 1974 then you have right to return the vehicle early but you’ll have to pay at least 50% of the total amount payable under the agreement.  

In addition, you are responsible for paying: 

  • any instalments due up to the point you terminate the agreement (including any arrears); and  
  • any excess mileage charge; and  
  • damage charges due.  

If you have any vehicle related services then these will be stopped automatically. 

  • If you are a Just Add Fuel ®, Citroen SimplyDrive® or DS SimplyDrive customer then you must contact your insurer to cancel the insurance policy if you want to stop it and stop paying.  
  • If you have a funded insurance loan, you can’t voluntary terminate this but you can settle it early. 
  • We encourage you to think carefully before applying this option, it may not be a good option for you if you have still got a lot to pay, you’ve made a large deposit, and you haven’t kept the vehicle in good repair or kept to your mileage allowance as there could be charges when you return the car.  
  • If you’d like to exercise your right to terminate your agreement, you’ll need to let us know in writing. We’ll send you a quote showing your outstanding liability (if applicable) and information on how to proceed. Please note that it is your responsibility to return your vehicle to us. 

Thinking things through 

We would suggest to all our customers to think carefully about their financial circumstances and to take action as quickly as possible to prevent the situation worsening. We know that sometimes things can feel out of control but there are some simple things that you can do. We'd recommend to customers to use the fantastic Money Advice Service "Money Health Check". It's a completely free and independent tool to help you assess your finances and gives practical guidance and suggested solutions.   

You can also obtain guidance and assistance related to COVID-19 by visiting the following links: 

FCA: Dealing with financial difficulties during coronavirus
The Money Advice Service: Money Navigator Tool 
The Money Advice Service: Where to get free debt advice

General Financial Difficulty Assistance

Helpful information and support details

At PSA Finance we understand that sometimes circumstances can change which can lead to financial difficulty. Please do not suffer in silence if this is the case with your PSA Finance agreement. If you are behind with payments and have received an arrears notice, please contact us and make us aware of your situation. We will then consider your individual case and discuss the options available to you. 

As documented by the Financial Conduct Authority there are a number of things to consider if facing financial difficulty. Doing nothing can make the situation worse as the lender could take legal action against you meaning that you could end up paying more in interest and charges. Missed payments could also affect your credit rating making it difficult to get credit in future. For the latest consumer credit information sheets in accordance with the Consumer Credit Act 1974, please see below:

Arrears information sheet
Default information sheet

Work out how much money you owe

Firstly, you need to assess the situation, working out the amount of money you owe and who you owe it to. A debt advisor can help you make a list of all of the organisations that you owe money. 

Contact the organisations that you owe money

Let them know you are having problems. They may be able to discuss alternative options for paying back what you owe. 

Get free help and advice

Your rights and options depend on the type of agreement that you have, and the law can be very complex so it's best to get advice on this. You can get free, independent help and advice from a number of organisations. We have listed these below for you.  

Prioritise your debts

Some debts are more urgent than others because the consequences of not paying them can be more severe. For example, mortgage, rent, council tax/rates, gas or electricity arrears could have implications on your house. A debt adviser can help you to work out a budget in order to keep your finances under control. 

Think carefully before borrowing money to repay debts

Some people assume that the easiest option is to borrow more money but we'd strongly recommend getting free, independent advice before doing so. You will likely pay more in the long run and if you borrow against your home you risk losing your home.

You may be able to ask a court for more time to repay a debt 

In some circumstances this is an option. Speak to a debt adviser before considering court action and be sure to keep copies of letters and emails in case these are needed by the court. 

Useful Contacts

You can contact the following not-for-profit organisations for free, confidential and impartial debt advice, or for details of where to get advice in your local area:

MoneyHelper

For free, unbiased and easy-to-access money tools, information and advice visit:
Website: www.moneyhelper.org.uk
Telephone: 0800 138 7777

Money Advice Scotland

If you live in Scotland, please use the following details:
Website: www.moneyadvicescotland.org.uk

Citizens Advice

For advice and information on debt and other topics, visit your local Citizens Advice or go to:
Website: www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Advice NI

If you live in Northern Ireland please use the following means of contact:
Website: www.adviceni.net
Telephone: 0800 915 4604
Email: advice@adviceni.net

Citizens Advice Wales

If you live in Wales, you can call Adviceline on 0300 330 1313 if you want to speak to someone about your debts. Calls cost 12p per minute from a landline, and from 3p to 45p from a mobile or visit:
Website: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/wales/debt-and-money
Telephone: 0300 330 1313

AdviceUK

Member centres offer debt advice including specialist advice for minority communities and people with disabilities:
Website: www.adviceuk.org.uk
Telephone: 0300 777 0107

Christians Against Poverty (CAP)

For free debt advice in your home. Check your postcode coverage via their website:
Website: www.capuk.org
Telephone: 0800 328 0006

National Debtline

Available to those living in England, Wales or Scotland for debt advice and information:
Website: www.nationaldebtline.org
Telephone: 0808 808 4000

StepChange Debt Charity

For debt advice throughout the UK:
Website: www.stepchange.org
Telephone: 0800 138 1111

Business Debtline

Offers free and confidential debt advice to the self-employed and small businesses:
Website: www.businessdebtline.org
Telephone: 0800 197 6026

Civil Legal Advice

You may get legal aid if your home is at risk. To get in touch:
Website: www.gov.uk/civil-legal-advice
Telephone 0845 345 4345

Financial Ombudsman

If you have a complaint that you can’t resolve with your lender, the Financial Ombudsman Service may be able to help:
Website: www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk
Telephone: 0300 123 9123 or 0800 023 4567

Samaritans

Call 116 123 to get help if you're struggling to cope with things. The Samaritans can't offer debt advice, but they can provide free and confidential help and wellbeing support to those in distress 24 hours a day, 365 days a year:
Website: www.samaritans.org
Telephone: 116 123
Email: jo@samaritans.org