NatWest launches debt assistance tool

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NatWest has launched an online tool in partnership with Paylink Solutions, aimed at customers in financial hardship.

The service will reduce the time customers spend populating an income and expenditure form from 25 minutes to five minutes, by automating the process using Open Banking technology.

According to NatWest, customers were previously required to complete a lengthy, complex document and manually input hundreds of pieces of information.

Upon completion of the online form, customers will be able to verify any information that has been manually input into the system, which NatWest said can automatically detect and highlight unusual spending patterns.

Customers will then be given the option of speaking to a specialist team member over the phone about a repayment plan or being referred to debt and counselling charities.

Dave Lowe, chief administrative officer for personal banking at NatWest, said: “For any customer in financial hardship, gaining a full understanding of their debts is the first step that needs to be taken to ensure they get the help they need.

“We’re using Open Banking technology to take the time, effort and stress out of helping customers take this vital first step so that we can focus on finding a long-term solution for their financial problems.”

NatWest has been working with Paylink to create digital debt tools for customers and, earlier this year, launched a ‘Digital Referral Form’, which allows staff to refer customers who need debt advice directly to debt advice provider PayPlan.