FCA Debt Advice Regulation
In most circumstances, debt advice is a regulated activity; this means that the government has appointed a specific regulator to make sure that debt advice is delivered to certain required standards. The information below provides some key information to show how this works in practice, and to show you how to check that a firm is regulated.
The regulation is a good thing for consumers because it means that FCA regulated firms offering debt advice have passed strict compliance checks to become authorised. Firms then have to stick to a professional code and treat their customers fairly.
Other defined FCA category permissions
Firms are also required to be authorised for other defined category permissions, for debt advice these include the following:
Requirements - not for profit (charities and 'not for profit' organisations)
Client money (only if supervising debt management plans)
Debt counselling (general advice)
Debt adjusting (negotiating lower repayments with creditors)
Providing credit information services (checking consumer credit files)
It is easy to tell whether an authorised firm is a 'not for profit' because their FCA register entry will show as 'Requirements - not for profit'.