When is consumer legislation relevant from a lender's perspective?
When is consumer legislation relevant from a lender's perspective?

The following Banking & Finance guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • When is consumer legislation relevant from a lender's perspective?
  • Consumer credit law
  • Unfair contract terms
  • Mortgage lending
  • The Standards of Lending Practice
  • The Standards of Lending Practice—Personal Customers

Consumer credit law

Lenders carrying out regulated credit activities need to be fully authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and need to follow the relevant provisions of the legislation outlined below. The FCA takes action against firms and individuals that carry on regulated activities in the UK without authorisation and can use a wide range of enforcement powers including criminal prosecutions(carrying a prison sentence of up to two years, a fine, or both), action through the civil courts (including injunctions, asset freezes, winding-up and bankruptcy) and publishing warnings against specific firms and individuals. Therefore, lenders need to understand whether the activity they are undertaking falls within the consumer credit legislation and if so whether they are authorised to carry out the relevant activity. If in doubt the lender should consult a consumer credit law specialist. For more information, see Practice Note: Unauthorised business—legal and regulatory framework.

The law

The table below sets out the main existing English and EU legislation relating to consumer credit and provides a short summary of each piece of legislation:

Legislation Summary
The Consumer Credit Act 1974 (CCA 1974) The CCA 1974 aimed to protect consumers