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Debt emergency

If your debts are becoming unmanageable or you are facing an emergency like court action or eviction, you are not alone. Even though you may be feeling overwhelmed, scared or you’ve just stopped opening the post, there is free help is available to support you.

Man being rained on and woman with umbrella

What is a debt emergency?

MoneyHelper describes a debt emergency as:

  • court action
  • bailiff action
  • disconnection
  • eviction for mortgage or rent arrears.

If you are facing any of these it is important to get free independent debt advice urgently.

You can use the MoneyHelper debt locator tool to find free debt advice services in your local area.

You can visit the MoneyHelper website where there are links to free and confidential help from other charities and organisations.

The charity National Debtline provides free help and advice and their website has lots of useful tools and guides. You can call, email or use webchat to talk to an adviser. 

A debt adviser will be able to talk to the court, bailiff or creditor on your behalf.

You may feel that your debt problems are too small for an adviser to help you, or that you can’t afford advice or even that you don’t deserve help. 

These free services are here to help everyone, no matter what your circumstances are.

  • A debt adviser will never judge you or make you feel bad about your situation.
  • They are happy to give advice however big or small your debts are.
  • Everything is confidential.

I am expected in court

Key information

MoneyHelper advises that you always turn up to a court hearing. If you don’t go, a decision may be made without taking into account your situation.

Some courts use advice organisations such as Shelter or Citizens Advice who will be able to give you some last-minute advice on what to do.

If you’re due in court within 24 hours, ask if there is someone you can speak to before your case is heard.


MoneyHelper is part of the Money and Pensions Service.