Loan sharks

A loan shark is anybody who is lending money without a licence from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT). These unlicensed money lenders are working illegally – they are 'loan sharks'.

How loan sharks work:

  • They rarely give any paperwork to the people they've loaned money to – this makes it very difficult to keep track of how much is owed
  • If payments are missed, they often use threats and violence to get more money
  • They charge extremely high rates of interest and also add other 'charges' to loans whenever they want
  • They take away people’s bank cards as 'security'

If you have borrowed money from someone who doesn’t have a licence, you haven’t broken the law – they have!

You can report them in confidence, by:

Other ways to borrow money

You don’t need to turn to a loan shark for money, there are alternatives to borrowing money. You can use your local Credit Union.

A Loan in Liverpool

Click for more details

Money advice

Click for more details

Benefits advice

Click for more details