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What is a Crisis Loan and how do I get one?

What is a crisis loan?

  • A crisis loan is a lending option that is given out from the governmental social fund by the JobCentre Plus network. These kinds of loans are given out to UK consumers who have experienced some form of crisis or emergency and who need a quick loan to cope with what has happened to them.

    These loans are often given in situations where you or you family could experience health and/or safety problems without access to the money you need. They can also be used in certain other circumstances – i.e. if you already get a Community Care Grant from the social fund and are in the process of leaving the care system then you can apply for a crisis loan to help you make an upfront rent payment, for example.

How much can I apply for?

  • The amount of crisis loan you get will be set by the Job Centre staff who process your application. They will take your needs and situation into account and will give you a loan on that basis. Do be aware that this may not be the full amount that you need in all cases and you may not always get as much as you ask for.

Will I qualify for a crisis loan?

  • You can only apply for a crisis loan if you have no other lending or credit options. You do not, however, need to be currently claiming benefits and can still make an application here if you are working. These loans can only be awarded to people aged over 16. If you have some savings then you may not be given a loan or may not get as much as you ask for. The same applies if you are a wage earner.

How do I apply for a crisis loan?

  • You can apply over the phone or in person at your local JobCentre Plus office. You will need to go to the office if your application is approved to sign your paperwork and to pick up your cheque. The cheque you are given here can be paid into a bank account or cashed at a Post Office.

How much will a crisis loan cost?

  • Crisis loans are tax free and do not charge interest. All you have to do here is to pay back what you borrow according to the schedule you will be given once your application is approved.

How do I pay my loan back?

  • You will pay back your crisis loan in instalments. These can either be deducted from your benefits or, if you are working, then you can arrange to make your repayments from your wages. Repayments are usually made on a weekly basis based on what you can afford and will not generally start until your ‘crisis’ is sorted.

    If you do have emergency needs then social funding may well give you an affordable and easy to arrange short term solution. So, if you think you qualify then consider a crisis loan as an option.
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