Debt Advice For The Unemployed

Since losing his job, Carl's focus is on finding a new one - but the bills are piling up

Carl's story

Carl had always kept himself in a job, so he’d never considered life without a steady income. Then through no fault of his own, he was looking at supporting his family and keeping up the mortgage repayments without work.

His priority was to get another job as soon as possible, but it wasn’t easy. He knew he was entitled to support so he was also spending his time applying for benefits. With all that going on, Carl was putting bills like his Barclaycard on the back burner. But the combined stress of looking for work and letting bills go unpaid was building up and playing on his mind.

Carl wasn’t ready to explain how worried he was to his wife, let alone his lenders. But as the weeks passed and he was facing more and more unpaid bills, he felt the reality of his situation getting to him. He already knew he wouldn’t be able to pay his next Barclaycard bill because:

  • he hadn’t paid his last two credit card bills
  • fees were being added to his outstanding minimum payments
  • he’d taken out a small payday loan and repayments had started

How Barclaycard helped

Carl decided to do what he could to stop lenders contacting him. He rang Barclaycard and got through to one of our advisers, Sian.

Sian gave Carl time to explain things in his own words and wasn’t judgemental or demanding, as Carl had feared

Together they created a repayment plan that Carl could afford, and put a longer term plan in place for when he’d found work again. Sian explained what information she needed and why, as well as how it would affect Carl’s credit score and what could be done to help

She checked that Carl knew he could access his Barclaycard account online to make debit card payments, change payment due dates and, when he could afford to, set up a Direct Debit – and that confidential and independent advice was available with StepChange Debt Charity


Carl wanted to call Barclaycard, but he was frightened there would be consequences. However, after speaking to Sian, a weight was lifted off his shoulders and Carl was able to focus on the important things, like supporting his family and finding a job.

Does your story sound like Carl’s?

Suddenly being out of work may be the last thing you expect, and losing a steady income can have a real impact on your finances and your family. It’s difficult trying to keep on top of unpaid bills while looking for work, and not knowing what happens next can be a significant source of stress and anxiety.

But there’s no need to do it alone…

We’re not here to make it worse – we really are here to help

We know your debts aren't going to disappear on their own, but we really can help. If you get in touch, we'll ask you about your income and outgoings so you can feel confident you're only repaying what you can really afford. And your priority payments – Council Tax, rent/mortgage repayments and household bills – will always come first.

It's probably the last thing you want to do, but giving us a call won’t make anything worse. We won't spring any surprises on you; our advisers are here to listen, understand and agree a solution with you – not demand payments you can’t afford.

You can rest assured, we’ll ask your permission before we do anything and check how you feel about your other finances.

We'll try to provide you with help that’s clear, practical and easy to understand. Also, we'll advise you where to find free and independent help.

Please get in touch to find out how we can help

Speak with our support team on:

0800 046 8324
Calls to 0800 and 0808 numbers are free from UK landlines.
Mobile charges may vary.

0330 159 5980
Calls to 03 numbers use free plan minutes if available – otherwise they cost the same as calls to 01/02 prefix numbers.

The line is free and open 8am – 9pm Monday to Friday, and 9am – 4pm Saturday

Or alternatively...

Contact us online by logging into Barclaycard online account  and sending us a secure message.

Write to us at:
Barclaycard Centre
Norwich way
Kirkby Town Centre
L32 8UY

StepChange logo

Do you owe money elsewhere?

If you're struggling with a few different debts or money worries, StepChange may also be able to help you.

They are the UK's largest provider of genuinely free independent debt advice and managed solutions, helping almost 600,000 people a year resolve problems, repay debts and rebuild lives.

Other ways you can get help

Do you need free help with your money?

Visit The Money Advice Service. They offer support in person, over the phone and online.

Are you receiving all your benefits?

Find out if you're getting all the money you could be entitled to.

Visit entitledto and use their free benefits calculator to understand if financial support is available.

Get local debt help

Contact Citizen's Advice Bureau for a list of debt counsellors in your area.

How close are you to a Debt Problem?

If you're worried that you need help with your finances then you can try StepChange Debt Charity's 60-second debt test.  By answering a few simple questions they'll be able to tell you if you need debt advice.

StepChange Debt Charity 60-second debt test


To protect the privacy of our customers, we have used photographs of actors and fictitious names, but they are based on real situations.