Living with illness and debt

When illness takes over, your finances can suffer.

Being diagnosed with a long-term illness affected many areas of Anna’s life, especially her finances, and she started to miss payments.

Anna’s story

Feeling low, Anna didn’t want to check her bank balance, so started making all her payments from her credit card.

When her next card bill arrived and was much higher than she expected, she felt overwhelmed. Worried that she wouldn’t be able to pay all her monthly bills, Anna didn’t know where to find help.

After putting her weekly food shop on her credit card so she could pay her utility bills, Anna’s brother persuaded her to give us a call.

How we helped

  • Anna spoke to Victoria, who listened to everything she said, and understood why Anna’s finances needed to be organised
  • They worked together and created a repayment plan, so Anna had an affordable monthly payment
  • Victoria told Anna before she agreed to the repayment plan that it would be reported to the Credit Reference Agencies, and that it could affect her ability to obtain credit in the future. However, entering into the repayment plan would be better for Anna than continuing to miss payments
  • Victoria also made sure that Anna knew how to access her Barclaycard account online so she could make payments to her account. For Anna’s Barclays current account, Victoria told her about Barclays Finance Manager, so Anna could learn how to manage her finances better


Are you in a similar situation to Anna?

Are you suffering from an illness and can’t work to help pay the bills?

We can help. As soon as you feel like you might be in financial difficulty, give us a call. Calling us won’t make anything worse.

To prepare for the call, it’ll be best if you have your account details and some information about your monthly income and outgoings ready. You might be talking for a while, as the adviser will want to understand your situation in detail, so make sure you set aside some time.

If you haven’t missed a payment but are worried about your finances, you may want to call the numbers below.

  • Mortgages – 0800 022 4022. Lines are open Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm and Saturday 9am to 1pm
  • Barclaycard – 0800 046 8324. Lines are open every day from 9am to 9pm
  • Overdraft and Barclayloan – 0345 600 4545. Lines are open Monday to Sunday, 8am to 9pm
  • Premier – 08009 247 365. Lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Call charges

If you’ve missed a payment, we’ll contact you soon to discuss your options. But if you’d like to speak to us in the meantime, please call 0345 734 5345. Lines are open Monday to Sunday, 7am to 11pm.

Self-employed or have a business? Get assistance here.

Visit your nearest branch if you’d like to speak to us in person.

Free help and advice

If you’re struggling with your finances or have debt with other creditors, contact National Debtline or StepChange for free advice on the phone or online.

If you need to see somebody in person, contact Citizens Advice.

How close are you to a debt problem?

If you’re worried about your finances, try StepChange Debt Charity’s 60-second debt test – a few simple questions will tell you if you need advice and where to get it.

These services can provide further help and support

  • NHS Live Well – advice and support for those struggling with illness
  • Entitledto – for specialist benefits advice
  • Money Advice Service – for free impartial information and tools on how to deal with your money

Coping financially with loss

Keeping on top of your finances during difficult times.

After Clare lost her husband, her life changed dramatically. She didn’t know how to look after her finances and was struggling to cope. See how we helped.

Living with a reduced income

Has your income recently gone down?

When John lost his job, he faced a reality he wasn’t expecting – he needed to support his family and had unpaid bills. Learn how we helped.

Coping with gambling addiction

Is your gambling out of control?

Forever chasing winners to cover his losses, Nigel’s gambling debts were spiralling out of control. See how we helped. 

Struggling to budget

Are you having trouble managing your money? We can help.

Dev was having trouble controlling his budget and was often relying on an overdraft to cover expenses. Read his story.