Dealing with debt

It’s perfectly normal for businesses to take on debt to support day-to-day operations and growth. But sometimes, circumstances lead to businesses facing problems managing their debts. Free, non-judgemental advice and support is available.

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Business Debtline is a charity run by the Money Advice Trust, and is a free dedicated debt advice service for people who are self employed or own small businesses.

When visiting their website, at the top of the homepage (on the right hand side if you’re on a laptop or computer) is a link where you can switch between different versions of the website for England & Wales and Scotland. Assuming you’re based in Scotland, you should select this first.

If business owners or sole traders are facing an emergency, Business Debtline advises contacting them for advice right away. This includes if any of the following may happen in the next five days:

  • Sheriff officers collecting any debts

  • Eviction from premises, including being made homeless

  • Gas, electricity, water or phone/internet connection being cut off

  • A court hearing

  • A deadline eg for payment

Business Debtline can be contacted by phone or webchat during office hours. However outside office hours, this factsheet for emergency debt situations in Scotland gives guidance on what to do in each of these situations.

If your situation is not an emergency, and you are looking for advice and support, Business Debtline has a Getting Ready for Advice factsheet for Scotland to help you prepare to get the most out of their service. This involves filling out a budget so they can help prepare a solution for you.

You will need to gather paperwork including:

  • Trading figures

  • Information about your debts, including personal debts if you’re a sole trader

  • Getting your credit reports

  • Identifying your assets

However if this seems overwhelming, then contact them for support through this process, so you can get started quickly.


Get advice, support, and sample letters from Business Debtline Scotland

Learn more

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