Finance Expert Criticizes UK’s New Student Loan Payment Tool

 
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Manage episode 270927170 series 2530089
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Finance expert Martin Lewis criticized the United Kingdom’s new student loan quick repayment tool, saying that it can lead to poor financial decisions. The UK government’s Student Loans Company (SLC) recently redesigned its website by introducing a new tool to make it easier for graduates to repay their outstanding loans. The organization said that the introduction of the new tool was based on customer suggestions. However, Lewis finds the SLC’s move to be dangerous and irresponsible because the new tool can allegedly mislead people. He said that the website may confuse debtors about the amount they need to pay and even intimidate them because the first thing they see upon logging into the site is the total amount of debt they owe in large font. However, Lewis pointed out that no matter how much the graduates owe in total, they only need to pay a fixed amount based on their income every year, and making overpayments would not change the amount they still need to pay in succeeding years. In addition, graduates are only required to make payments on their debts for 30 years, and all unpaid debt will be written off after this period. Lewis added that the quick repayment tool does not help clear any confusion because it lets people make payments without logging in or fully understanding how much they need to pay each month first. In response to Lewis’s criticism, an SLC spokesperson said that the new tool is the most advanced student loan service ever made available, and that contrary to Lewis’s claims, the new service was actually created as a way to prevent graduates from making excessive repayments. He added that the website redesign was the company’s response to customers’ demand for a quick and easy way to manage their accounts and check their loan balance online.

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