CAS Reports Increase in Debt Related Issues
Citizens Advice Scotland reported a 14% increase in the number of debt related issues over the past 12 months. The figures are an ongoing concern for CAS with almost 30% of the 976,989 issues advisers handled over the last year being debt related.
With the ongoing recession it is likely that these figures will increase again over the next year, and will also lead to increase in redundancy related issues due to loss of jobs. Of course as people fail to pay their bills they may be contact by debt collection agencies which can often lead to calls to CAS.
Kaliani Lyle, Citizens Advice Scotland’s Chief Executive said that “the fall in income, the threat of redundancy, the spiralling debt, the disappearance of reasonable credit, the lack of affordable housing and the spectre of homelessness – many are suffering combinations of all of these things, and the result is often depression, illness, family or relationship breakdown. This is the reality. And it’s hard to talk the language of recovery when you are dealing face-to-face every day with people who are living with such dreadful circumstances.”
As with any debt related issue, ignoring the problem does not make it go away and if you are contacted by a debt recovery agency you should deal with them in a professional manner, as they should with you. Discuss the debt and try to arrange an affordable payment plan where possible. In these tough times most debt collection companies are more than helpful in arranging payment agreements to clear off outstanding debts.