Economic Abuse Evidence Form

The information on this page is for organisations. If you are a survivor with coerced debt, please contact the Financial Support Line.

The Economic Abuse Evidence Form (EAEF) provides a quicker, easier and more consistent way for creditors and debt advice services to support victim-survivors of economic abuse.

What is the Economic Abuse Evidence Form (EAEF)?

The EAEF is an information-sharing tool for use by debt advisers to capture information about the abuse that a victim-survivor has experienced. It captures the information about the abuse in one place and helps a debt adviser support a survivor when communicating with creditors about coerced debt.

The EAEF can transform the support that victim-survivors facing debt receive. It has been informed by the experiences of victim-survivors and is modelled on the existing Debt and Mental Health Evidence Form used by money and debt advice services, financial services and other creditors.

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Why is it important?

Currently, victim-survivors contact an average of five different creditors and negotiate with them all individually. They have to repeat their story to each organisation, often more than once.

Used by debt advisers, the Economic Abuse Evidence Form makes it quicker and easier for creditors to support victim-survivors. It verifies that they have experienced economic abuse, meaning creditors can help them find a solution to coerced debt, such as a debt write off.

With four major creditors on board, the pilot programme is already achieving results for victim-survivors. In one case, the use of the form left the victim-survivor debt-free for the first time since leaving the perpetrator in 2008.

“This is the first month that a payment hasn’t gone out of my account for the debt in over 13 years and I finally feel like I’m free.”

Benefits for victim-survivors

A single tool that is used to guide decision-making is more likely to lead to a positive outcome for the victim-survivor.

Use of the EAEF has the potential to:

  • prevent the victim-survivor needing to go through the trauma of recounting their story more than once
  • mean the victim-survivor does not need to negotiate with multiple creditors
  • lead to faster and more consistent decision-making.

Benefits to organisations joining the pilot

Organisations joining the pilot will be able to use the form to collate information about a victim-survivor’s experience of economic abuse in one place.

As a recognised evidence form to support victim-survivors, the EAEF has the potential to:

  • help organisations empower victim-survivors and ensure they get the right debt solutions
  • provide a framework for conversations about economic abuse and training for staff to build confidence in responding to economic abuse
  • promote the nationwide agenda to support the most vulnerable customers
  • contribute to staff wellbeing, reducing the time spent reviewing traumatic evidence of abuse.
“Survivors of economic abuse often have to contact several companies to get help with debt, which can be stressful and upsetting. This new form will make it simpler and we hope it becomes standard across the energy industry and beyond.” Miriam Adler – Social and Community Team, Bulb
“This pilot will help us identify victim-survivors of economic abuse much more quickly and ensure that we can provide whatever help they might need with their water bills without putting them through the trauma of having to retell their story.” Rachel Ryan-Crisp – Vulnerability Lead, Southern Water

How your organisation can take part in the pilot

The EAEF is currently a pilot and we are looking for more creditors to take part. For more information and details of how to get involved, please complete the contact form below.

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Information for victim-survivors

If you are survivor looking for information on coerced debt, please contact the Financial Support Line.

The Economic Abuse Evidence Form has been created by Surviving Economic Abuse and Money Advice Plus as part of our award-winning partnership. With grateful thanks to the Money and Pensions Services, The Rayne Foundation and Cisco for the funding to make the pilot of this project possible.

The project is guided by a steering group with representatives from the debt advice, finance, utilities and domestic abuse sectors. Members include UK Finance, StepChange, Women’s Aid and Money Advice Trust.