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Do you have a loan with Swift Sterling Loans? Do you consider the loan repayments unaffordable? Are you receiving dreadful threats such as being taken to court?  If you are having problems with Swift Sterling Loans then this article is the perfect place to find help . You might be able to cancel your loan and get a refund!

It’s not your fault. Complaints to the Financial Ombudsman have risen this year from 830 to 2,006, so it’s safe to say that you’re not alone.

Deal with your debt today and feel better tomorrow.

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Who are Swift Sterling Loans?

Swift Sterling Loans is a direct lender based in the UK offering short-term loans of up to £1,000 with a maximum repayment period of five months. The company is a trading name of MMP Financial Limited and was founded in 2015.

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New laws for Swift Sterling Loans

It is hardly surprising that there are so many people who are in debt these days. Prior to the new laws being brought in, the lending industry was as high as £2 billion, and this was a consequence of irresponsible lending, together with excessive interest rates.

The Financial Conduct Authority found that many loan companies were operating in a way which was found to be detrimental to borrowers. This resulted in some companies receiving huge fines. One example is the popular company Wonga, who were fined £220 million. These fines put them out of business. Other companies received the same treatment, including Quickquid who were fined £18 million.

Where lenders were found not to have properly assessed their customers during the application process, they received a refund. The new law worked had an effect on the lending industry and following the 3 years after the law was introduced, loan numbers dropped from 10 million to 1.8 million and lenders also fell from 240 to 60.

If Swift Sterling Loans did not follow any of the laws below, then you could claim for a refund

Full Refund

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Is all this information starting to feel overwhelming? Don’t panic! I’ve put together a 4 question debt calculator so you can quickly and easily find the best solution for you. If you’re eligible for the new government scheme, you could write off up to 85% of your debt! Answer the four questions now.

Law #1: the loan company should have checked affordability

This law is by far the one which has hit lenders the hardest. As the Financial Conduct Authority determined that lenders should have ensured they made customers sign an agreement or they undertook an assessment to ensure the customer could afford to pay the loan back. If the affordability had not been checked, many lenders found themselves facing huge fines.

According to the law, the repayments should have been found to be sustainable. Which means the customer could afford to make repayments, while being able to take care of other essential commitments, such as rent, foods and day to day bills. They should not have had to take out further loans to make the repayments.

In short, the repayments should have been affordable to the borrower, and should not have affected their ability to pay other essential bills, such as rent and bills. If you could not afford the repayments, or you have taken out a loan to cover your repayments, you could claim for a refund! See my simple guide for doing so here

Read what to do if you can’t pay back your debt.

Law #2: interest and charges – the limits

This law is a good addition if you are already bonus claiming under law #1, although it is not necessary to claim both. The Financial Conduct Authority brought in a price cap, which was a tactics to help protect borrowers from being faced with excessive charges. These include:

  • A cost cap of 0.8% per day on the amount of loan you have borrowed – this includes both interest and all fees charged.
  • A cap on default fees of £15 – interest can still be charged after a default, but it should not exceed the original rate of 0.8% per day.
  • A complete cost cap of 100% – you should not be asked to repay more than 100% of the money borrowed.

These limits are relevant to all credit agreements with an interest rate of 100% or more and that are expected to be fully or substantially repaid within a year.

In addition, there were also other laws which came into force in May 2017. According to this, the lenders must now provide details of their products with a price comparison website, which must be authorised by the FCA and borrowers should also be provided with a summary of the cost of borrowing.

If Swift Sterling Loans UK are breaching any of these laws and they have attempted to charge you more than they should, the credit agreement would become unenforceable and they will not be able to make you repay the loan! You would have a strong case to claim money back

Law #3: continuous payment authority behaviour

In most cases, you will be asked to repay the debt using a Continuous Payment Authority (CPA). With a CPA, the company will have permission to take as much as they want from your bank or whenever they want. They should always inform you before they make any attempt to debit your bank account, but unfortunately, it is common for them to ignore this crucial step. The result of this is often that you don’t even realise the money has left your account until you next look at your bank statement.

If you are struggling with important payments including rent, mortgage or your utility bills, and the money is suddenly debited by Swift Sterling Loans UK ahead of these bills, you may find yourself in severe financial troubles.

The new regulations also mean that if the CPA fails to be paid on two occasions, no further requests can be made to your bank account.

There are also rules regarding the amount of money the lender is permitted to take using a CPA. They are no longer permitted to take partial payments. If there are insufficient funds in your account to cover the full value of the payment due, they cannot take any funds at all. The only way you can do this is if you agree that they may take a partial payment, but it is necessary to give them permission in advance for them to be able to do this.

If they decide to make more than two requests or they try to take a partial payment without you providing them with explicit permission to do so, they would be in breach of the regulations and you should complain and put in a claim.

Can’t afford your next repayment?

If Swift Sterling Loans UK has operated legitimately but you simply can’t afford to repay the loan, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself.

If you are paying them by standing order or direct debit, you should contact your bank and cancel these. Swift Sterling Loans UK will no longer be able to collect payments automatically and you will retain control of your bank account. Your bank may advise you to inform Swift Sterling Loans UK that you have done this, but you are under no legal obligation to do so; they will be unable to collect any money from you until you give them explicit permission to do so.

Of course, you will still owe them money so you must deal with that directly; while you might be tempted to do so, don’t hide your head in the sand. Your first approach should be to contact Swift Sterling Loans UK and talk to them about your problems. They are obliged to treat you fairly, so you should be able to come to an agreement to reschedule your repayments.

By law, lenders must:

  • Indicate where you can obtain free independent debt advice
  • Hold off debt recovery for a reasonable period while you develop a repayment plan possibly using a debt advisor
  • Giving you reasonable time to repay possibly freezing interest and additional charges.

I’ve written more about what to do if you can’t pay back your loan here.

Want to make a claim?

The Financial Ombudsman Service received 10,529 complaints about these types of loans in 2017 – this is just the tip of the iceberg as many would have been resolved without escalating to the Financial Ombudsman Service. So it’s safe to say that you’re not alone.

If Swift Sterling Loans UK has treated you unfairly, you may be entitled to a refund even if you have paid off the loan within the last six years. You can expect to be refunded all the interest you have paid on the loan along with any additional charges, plus 8% interest on any refunds – this adds up to £1000s for some readers.

I’ve had 100s of success stories from readers who have followed the simple templates in my guide.

References

CONC 2.1 Application

CONC 5.2A Creditworthiness assessment

CONC 13.1 Application

Read More…

About the author

Scott Nelson

Scott Nelson is a financial services expert, with over 10 years’ experience in the industry, including 6 years in FCA regulated companies. Read more
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