Kerry Katona: Formerly bankrupt star slammed for signing up as the new face of payday lending service
MP criticizes ex-bankrupt Kerry Katona for pledging to promote payday loan service
Former bankrupt Kerry Katona came under fire today after announcing she would star in a new TV commercial for a payday loan service.
The singer-turned-reality TV star speaks about her own story of financial woes in the ad, which airs on 26 TV channels Tuesday.
Kerry, 32, said she was happy to get involved with CashLady.co.uk because she was aware of the difficulty many people have in obtaining credit from banks for short-term emergencies.
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Money matters: Kerry Katona, pictured in London on Monday, has become the face of CashLady.co.uk payday loan service
New and Improved: Kerry is proud to have taken care of her own finances and now wants to help other women
She also said it was important to get people to talk openly about their finances, especially women.
But Labor Party chairman Stella Creasy said it was “sad” to see someone who has experienced debt “misery” publish a company she said was charging an interest rate of $ 2,670. percent.
In the 30-second TV commercial, Kerry happily confronts her previous money struggles.
And smiling beside a fictional magazine cover with the headline Kerry’s Cash Chaos, she says, “We’ve all had money problems – I know I have.”
Kerry said she has partnered with CashLady.co.uk, whose tagline is Fast Cash For Fast Lives, as it is committed to being a responsible party to the payday lending industry.
Cash for trash: The former pop star said it was important to get people to talk openly about their finances, especially women
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Kerry said: “I am delighted that CashLady has given me the opportunity to report on this in the national media.
“I’ve had enough money problems myself, so I know how difficult it can be when you need money at the wrong time.
“We are all aware that life can cost you dearly. CashLady offers a possible solution, but it’s important to get people to be more honest about their financial problems, so that they are more likely to get help when they need it. “
But Miss Creasy, who has long campaigned against payday loan companies, said: “Behind the glittering celebrity endorsement the thing Kerry doesn’t say is that this company charges an interest rate of 2670 percent.
“No wonder with rates like these, so many women are having trouble borrowing from payday lenders, with debt charities reporting an increase in the number of people turning to them for help.
“That’s why it’s sad to see someone who knows firsthand the misery of being in debt encouraging others to use legal loan sharks instead of credit unions when they need a loan.
“Names of households that see short-term cash increases for their own bank balances advertising these businesses risk promoting businesses that are hurting the finances of millions of UK families in the long run.
“That’s why we need to act now to cap what these companies can charge to help women struggling to make ends meet in 2013.”
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However, Kerry said, “The reason I was happy to work with CashLady is that they are committed to being a responsible party to the payday lending industry.
“They are constantly doing their best to make sure customers get as much information as possible, and were one of the first companies to put in place clear responsible lending information, including where customers can get it. free financial advice when in trouble.
“They’re also committed to making things as quick and clear as possible for their customers. So if you have an urgent need for a plumber or electrician, or anything for the money, you know you’ll get the cash fast, so you can take care of those little emergencies right away. . As they say, it’s quick money for quick lives.
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All applicants must be at least 18 years old and employed, as well as live and bank in the UK.
Kerry’s desire to stabilize financially is evident in the fact that she has reunited with the old band Atomic Kitten.
Liz McClarnon and Natasha Hamilton were seen leaving a studio after filming the Big Reunion ITV2 TV show.
The three girls were smiling and in a good mood as they walked to a local bar for a celebration after filming the show which features the boy group Five, 911, B * Witched, Liberty X and Honeyz.
Gillian Guy, CEO of the national charity Citizens Advice, said: “Behind the friendly publicity and clever marketing campaigns are typical interest rates of over 4,000%, exorbitant missed payment fees and the misery of several revolving loans. We want these companies to be candid with their customers about the real costs of payday loans.
“Every day, citizen advice offices across the country see more and more people who have had to turn to a payday lender to keep themselves afloat. In fact, we’ve seen a tenfold increase in the number of customers struggling with payday loans, with a worrying number turning to expensive lenders to bridge the gap between tight incomes and rising costs of essentials. like food and rent.
“Anyone who is having difficulty repaying their debt can get free, independent advice from their local CAB or online at www.adviceguide.org. “
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Payday loans are controversial, short-term, high-cost loans designed to keep customers waiting until “payday”. They sometimes come with sky-high interest levels – up to 6,000 percent in the worst-case scenario.
Lenders have been accused of pushing clients into a debt spiral and have now caught the attention of regulators. MEPs are currently working on rules to tighten practices in the industry.
Debt charities have warned people against using payday loans and some companies have been criticized for advertisements that encourage reckless attitudes towards spending.
If things get too difficult …
Then you should speak to someone immediately. If you think you can’t pay off your loan or keep track of your credit card payments, contact your credit provider, they will be able to set up a repayment structure for you.
If it’s more serious, like if you can’t pay your rent or mortgage, or if you have an unpaid tax bill, there are resources that provide free independent advice.
Free debt advice is available from Citizens Advice, National Debtline, StepChange, or Money Advice Trust.
More help: Read Tthis is Money’s guide to getting out of debt in January.
Spectacular: Kerry played with red glasses but failed to put them on