MaPS confirms increasing debt advice capacity in England

26 August 2020

The Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) has announced an open procurement process for funding towards telephone and digital debt advice provision for 2020-21. The initial amount stands at £4 million.

The funding, which will be made available to companies not already in receipt of MaPS mainstream debt advice funding, will be put towards increasing the amount of good quality, free-to-customer debt advice. Additional debt advisers will be recruited and trained in England, following on from a market engagement process that ran in July 2020.

Organisations that fit the eligibility criteria can apply for the funding here.

As coronavirus moves into the next phase, it is expected that there will be more of a requirement for debt advice services. In acknowledgement of this fact, MaPS secured an extra £38 million in June 2020, to spend on assisting providers in delivering advice to more people in England. This is due to the fact that many more people will be facing financial distress as a result of the impact coronavirus has had on the economy, and on life in general. Providers who may have faced disruption in terms of their income streams will also benefit from the additional funding.

There are certain delivery expectations placed on this, so:

  • Positions created must be able to function remotely, so individuals can either be home-workers or office based, but with the ability to work from home
  • The positions must demonstrate the ability to provide a national telephone and digital debt advice service
  • Advice must be delivered through a combination of both telephone and digital channels

In order to be eligible, organisations must:

  • Hold the relevant FCA authorisations to be able to deliver debt advice, and already be an existing debt advice service
  • Provide free-to-customer debt advice
  • Hold a MaPS accredited quality standard or hold FCA authorisations for handling client money
  • Meet existing debt supervision requirements

 


The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication. For all the latest information, news and resources on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting payroll professions, visit our Coronavirus hub.