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BNPL users charged late payment fees

What has happened? 

In January 2024, it was reported that a survey carried out for the education charity the Centre for Financial Capability had established that the use of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) has soared in recent years, with a third of UK adults having now used the services and 40% of 18-34-year-olds.

What are the key points of the survey?

While BNPL is generally interest-free, users risk late payment fees and hits on their credit scores. Around a quarter of those who have used BNPL have missed one or more repayments in the last six months, rising to 34% of 18-34-year-olds. Of those who have missed repayments in the last six months, around two-thirds have missed payments twice or more. Over a quarter of those who missed repayments had a decreased credit score as a result, or had been contacted by a debt collection agency.

The Centre has pointed out that because the sector is currently unregulated, there is no duty for providers to run background and affordability assessment checks on users. This allows users to get into further debt, as they could be subject to separate late payment charges imposed by different lenders.

Please see our other blog posts on BNPL here and here.


How can we help you? 

Thistle Initiatives has supported lending firms for over 10 years as a trusted compliance and regulatory advisor. In addition to assisting you as-and-when, our team of specialists can serve as your right hand in meeting and complying with FCA regulations. We understand the importance of staying up-to-date and compliant and are dedicated to providing the guidance and support needed to do so.

Are you looking for help with your BNPL compliance arrangements, affordability assessments, or more general regulatory questions? Contact our specialist team now to schedule a free consultation. Get in touch with us by calling 020 7436 0630 or sending an email to