Will a payday lender call my employer?

Some payday lenders call an applicant's employer to verify their work status. If you've decided to take out a payday loan, you might prefer that they didn't.

Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyhelper.org.uk.

Please note: High-cost short-term credit is unsuitable for sustained borrowing over long periods and would be expensive as a means of longer-term borrowing.

Lenders always promise to be discreet about getting in touch with employers, but some borrowers understandably remain nervous about this. This guide covers the issue and lists lenders’ policies on this subject.

Which lenders call your employer?

Discover lender policies on speaking to applicants’ employers.

  • The Money Platform. The Money Platform states that it won’t contact your employer at any point.
  • Lending Stream. Lending Stream states that as part of its checks, it may contact your employer in a discreet fashion but will not share any details of your loan application.
  • Moneyboat. Moneyboat states that it won’t share your details with other companies or contact your employer.

Should I worry about it?

It’s understandable that you wouldn’t want other people knowing your financial affairs, especially when you’re in difficulty. Payday lenders generally promise to be as discreet as possible when contacting an employer. Typically, the lender will call the main contact number to verify your employment.

If your employer has an HR department, the payday lender should be passed to this department. HR professionals are used to dealing with sensitive confidential issues like this, so you should be able to trust them to deal sensitively with any information revealed. If your employer doesn’t have a dedicated HR department, the call may be forwarded to the person who deals with your HR issues within the business.

Even if the full details of your loan were revealed, this shouldn’t have any impact on your career.

Payday loans

What are my options?

If your lender claims it may contact your employer, there is little you can do to stop it other than refuse to take out a loan in the first place.

If you’re that concerned about your employer finding out about your loan, choose a lender that says it won’t contact employers. You can find out a lender’s stance on this via its website or customer support team.

You might also consider borrowing money from an alternative source such as the following:

  • Credit card. Credit card companies don’t need to contact employers to verify your employment information. If you pay off your balance at the end of the month, you won’t pay interest on purchases. There are several available credit cards for people with bad credit. These tend to have higher interest rates and lower credit limits though.
  • Overdraft. Ask if you can have an authorised overdraft added to your current account. The amount is typically smaller than what a payday lender may allow, and the fees for falling into an unauthorised draft are very harsh, but there is no need for anyone to contact your employer. Some bank accounts even provide interest-free overdrafts.
  • Credit union. Credit union loans are a more affordable source of credit than payday loans. The APR is capped at 42.6% in England, Scotland and Wales, and 12.68% in Northern Ireland, plus these bodies won’t contact your employer.

The bottom line

It’s understandable that you’re a bit edgy about payday lenders calling your employer, but if lenders keep their promises about respecting your privacy, there should be nothing to worry about. If you want to avoid this phone call, choose an alternative lender or alternative source of credit.

Frequently asked questions

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