Debt Advice Foundation implements new universal debt-calculating tool

Debt helpline now using the Standard Financial Statement for all calls

The charity’s advisers are now using the Money Advice Service’s new guidelines, known as the Standard Financial Statement (SFS) when speaking to callers about their income and expenditure. 
The Standard Financial Statement was created as a way to bring greater consistency to the debt advice sector. All major debt advice providers, creditors, and other debt bodies will now use the same format to assess income, expenditure, repayment levels and affordability for over-indebted people.  
The SFS will allow advisers to pass people’s details more smoothly between different agencies, for example when those in debt are passed on to another organisation who can arrange their debt solution. 
It also means that creditors and debt charities are on the same page when assessing what the caller can afford to pay back, with the aim of allowing debt advice providers and creditors to work together to achieve the right outcomes for people struggling with their finances.
Developed in partnership with stakeholders within the debt and financial services sectors, the SFS will become the only format used by the debt advice sector, replacing any alternative financial statements currently in use.
A savings category has been introduced into the SFS, which promotes the benefits of building a small savings allowance and will help those within a debt solution withstand any unexpected income shocks.
David Rodger, CEO of Debt Advice Foundation said of the new tool;
“We are very pleased to be one of the first agencies to implement the new Standard Financial Statement. We welcome any initiative which leads to better outcomes for those struggling with debt. 
“The SFS is not intended for the public to use, so if you are a member of the public seeking help with financial problems, you should still contact a debt advice charity such as Debt Advice Foundation for assistance.”