Loan sharks

A loan shark is someone who lends money and charges interest, but is not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Loan sharks rarely, if ever, give any paperwork and if payments are missed they often use intimidation and violence to get money from their ‘clients’.

Contact us in confidence if:

  • you have been offered a cash loan
  • you have been threatened when you couldn’t pay
  • your bank card or valuables have been taken from you as “security”
  • you have a debt which keeps growing even though you’re making payments

How to avoid loan sharks:

  • save money regularly, so you are not in urgent need of a loan
  • plan your borrowing, compare rates, talk to the credit union
  • do not accept cash loans, even if the lender seems friendly or helpful
  • always get proper paperwork, showing the term of your loan, interest rate etc.

Further support & reporting loan sharks

Trading Standards and Department for Business, Innovation and Skills publish a regular newsletter of successes they are having prosecuting loan sharks. You can sign up to their newsletters and get more information at the main website

They also provide a confidential reporting hotline and email so you can report loan sharks for yourself or on behalf of others.

Local Action on loan sharks

Brinnington Community Art Group was commissioned by the Neighbourhood Team through Stockport Homes to create a mosaic warning others about the dangers of loan sharks.

The mosaic is made from over 7,500 individual pieces and took five weeks to create. Rachel Glindon, Secretary of the Community Art Group, said:

“There is a big problem with loan sharks in Brinnington as you may have read in the papers and the mosaic is part of a coordinated campaign encouraging residents to ‘Just say no’. Local schools were involved with a badge and poster design competition and the Brinnington Street Watch group organised a leaflet drop around the estate as well as a Facebook campaign.”