UK: Lenders Must Comply With the New Consumer Credit Directive

Last Updated: 18 May 2010
Article by Karen Jacobs

The Consumer Credit Directive 2008/48/EC ("the Directive") and the Consumer Credit (EU Directive) Regulations 2010 introduce new rights and obligations. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has decided that there will be a transitional period and any new agreements entered into after 31 January 2011 must comply with the new requirements.

The key changes are as follows.

  • Adequate explanations. A duty for lenders to provide adequate explanations to consumers about the credit on offer to enable them to decide whether it is suited to their needs and circumstances. (Regulation 3 and 4 of the Directive).
  • Assessment of creditworthiness. An obligation for lenders to assess the creditworthiness of consumers before concluding a credit agreement or increasing the amount of credit available under an existing agreement. Lenders can decide how to assess creditworthiness, but are required to base their assessment on information obtained from the consumer, where appropriate and from a credit reference agency, where this is necessary. (Regulation 5 of the Directive).
  • Refusal of credit. If an application is refused on the basis of information from a credit reference agency, the lender must inform the creditor of this when it declines the credit. (Regulation 40 of the Directive).
  • Right to withdraw. The consumer has the right to withdraw from a credit agreement within 14 days without giving any reason. This replaces the current more limited right to cancel some types of agreements in certain circumstances. (Regulation 13 of the Directive).
  • Assignments of debts. If a debt is assigned, the consumer must be informed of this by either the lender who buys the debt or the lender who sold the debt. (Regulation 36 of the Directive).
  • Credit intermediary links. Credit intermediaries must disclose their links to lenders and disclose and agree fees for their services with the consumer. (Regulation 41 of the Directive).
  • Right to repay early. The consumer has the right to repay an agreement early in part and to receive a reduction in the total cost of the agreement as a result. The existing legal framework for full early repayment has been retained and extended to cover partial early repayment. (Regulation 29-34, 59-62 and 77-84 of the Directive).
  • Right to terminate. The consumer has the right to terminate an open-end credit agreement at any time unless the parties have agreed that a period of notice not exceeding one month should be given. The lender can also terminate subject to given the consumer at least two months' written notice. The lender can also terminate or suspend the consumer's right to draw down an open-end credit agreement provided they give objectively justified reasons for doing so. (Regulation 37-38 of the Directive).

The Directive also amends or extends existing requirements:

  • Advertisements. Advertisements that contain specific information about the cost of the credit need to provide a representative example of a credit offer. The Consumer Credit (Advertisement) Regulations 2010 will dispense with the typical APR approach.
  • Pre-contractual information. Consumers must be given pre-contractual information in writing according to a specific format set out in the Directive. This information is set out in the Consumer Credit (Disclosure of Information) Regulations 2010.
  • Contractual information. Other contractual information required is set out in the Consumer Credit (Agreements) Regulation 2010.
  • Unsecured overdrafts. Non-business unsecured overdrafts will be subject to the requirements for both pre-contractual and contractual information although an overdraft can be arranged urgently without prior written information. Where a current account allows the account holder to overdraw without a pre-arranged overdraft, information about the charges must be included in the agreement. (Regulation 19 of the Directive).
  • Obligation of the creditor in respect of goods. Where a credit agreement is used to purchase goods, the consumer can pursue the creditor for a remedy. The value of the goods must be at least £30,000, the credit agreement must be for £60,260 or less and the consumer must have tried to obtain satisfaction from the supplier first. This supplements s75 of the Consumer Credit Act where the cash price of goods is not less than £100 and not more than £30,000. (Regulation 25 of the Directive).
  • The total charge for credit and the APR. The total charge for credit and the APR must be calculated in accordance with a specified formula. The formula is different to the one which already applies in the UK , but the result it produces is the same and the assumptions are broadly similar. (Total Charge for Credit Regulations 2010).
  • Variation of interest rate. Where an agreement allows for variation of an interest rate, notice of variation must be provided to the consumer before the change takes effect. This is similar to the current requirements.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.