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Could I be removed as guarantor? Amigo Loans

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Loans
20 replies 5.5K views
fc92fc92 Forumite
3 posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Loans
I accepted to be guarantor for an Amigo loan for my cousin.

At first the loan was for £1000, and although I knew the interest was high it was less than some on the others. He had no one else to help as his parents have passed away, meaning he is left by himself at quite a young age - 20. I agreed to the first amount as although I wasn't happy about it, I could afford to take the responsibility of £1000 if anything happened.

This was fine and he paid the loan for nearly a year until he again came to me in need. The house he was renting with his partner he could no longer return to, and this therefore meant that he was homeless. I need to stress that even though he had these issues he was still working in full time employment, in quite a good role and made a good bit more money than myself.

As events spiralled and he found himself with debt mounting and the only way he could see out was to get a top up on the loan he had to lift him out this initial hole and then pay back a larger monthly amount to what he already had. The bank would not help him, he had already tried a number of avenues, and was due to get a pay increase with his new contract the next month.

I did not want to agree, but due how he was presenting, his persistence - even turning up at my work visibility very distressed, and my worry for his well being I felt I had no choice. We are not a big family, we don't have much money in that I had nothing I could really give him, and the reality being presented made me feel I had no other option but to help.

My issue is the top up was for quite a substantial amount more, nearly £5000. During the top up process it became apparent that in the first loan my wage had been duplicated on the initial loan pay out, as I only worked part time. This meant they had given me a loan on the basis I made over £1000, when my reality was I made just over £700. I also have no assets, literally. I still live with my parents after returning from travelling, and care for my sick father between working my part time role.

I have never received any help from the state, lived in my overdraft and had been living in it for over 3 years at the time, and did not have a strong credit rating.

After some conversation with Amigo advisers I was told that the wage amount I presented meant I didn't qualify at the time, and asked if there was anyway I could realistically reduce the information given in order to leave myself enough 'emergency income' on their side. The adviser on the call then proceed to change my original information while asking me questions like,
"Are you partner and family happy to continue to help you financially over the next 5 years?" (I have this on tape as I have a copy of my recordings.)

After a very rushed and confused process the funds were given to me, to which I then gave to him - as well as what little money of my own I could help with.

Things were fine until a February when he again came to me and told me that he could not cope anymore. As well as the Amigo loan he had taken out others elsewhere - without my knowledge - and I now found himself in nearly £10,000. The other loans were from payday lenders in his own name, with even higher interest.

I immediately contacted Amigo before any payments had defaulted and informed them, telling them of my worry and my reality that I could not afford the payments as I was giving more money towards my parents mortgage while living there as my mum had began partial retirement.

They at no point offered to freeze, and instead bombarded me for payments telling me that the responsibility fell to me.

My question is really is there any likelihood of me being taken off as guarantor?

I have already complained to them and asked to be removed as guarantor as the reality was I probably shouldn't have been accepted as a guarantor in the first place, but also that I had been duped into agreeing into a financial agreement in which I was unaware of the full circumstances.

They rejected my complaint and I have now taken it to the Ombudsman, who I know are very busy as I have already waited over the 6 weeks.

I am worried now as communication has broken down between me and my cousin, the reality being him not talking to me or replying to my messages. I received a letter from Amigo saying that he has now entered in a debt management plan, and I am fully now liable for the loan.

I am aware I of the T&Cs, but has anyone ever been successfully removed from such an agreement before?

Receiving this letter and not hearing back have me worrying as I am aware I may need to pay something, and I will as long as I can afford it. I just can't afford the whole amount.

Any info anyone could share would be greatly appreciated.



  • gycraig_2gycraig_2 Forumite
    533 posts
    Why on earth would they. This is the whole point of there business model
  • zx81zx81 Forumite
    28.4K posts
    Tenth Anniversary 10,000 Posts Photogenic Name Dropper
    No. They know their borrowers are likely to not repay, hence the need for a guarantor.

    If you can borrow money at a cheaper rate to repay the Amigo debt, then do that.
  • SocajamSocajam Forumite
    1K posts
    1,000 Posts Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    To everyone reading this sorry story and I can tell you from my own stupid experience please before agreeing to become a guarantor for anyone put a question on here for advice and I can guarantee that the responders will agree 100% not to become a guarantor for anyone.

    What this young man did was despicable and yes you are responsible.
    I trust someone by putting them on my credit card (stupidly yes) because I thought that I was helping them to rebuild their credit.
    Guess what they ran up the card to the tune of close to 5,000 pounds, I am still waiting for my money. It was only because I am extremely conscious of saving that I had the money to repay the debt and remove this person from the CC.
    I would never ever help anyone again through signing as a guarantor, putting them on my CC or renting my property to them.

    I am not sure what can be done, but something should have gone off in your head if he was coming to your work place in such desperation.
    You need to see if you can work with these people on how you can repay the loan.
    Not sure if you can take this cousin to court, if you can I would do it, just to teach him a lesson.
    I know this is not much, but I truly feel your pain and betrayal at the love you showed this cousin and the way he treated you. I wish you luck because you are going to need it.
  • kelevrazkelevraz Forumite
    192 posts
    Id say there's 0 chance they'll just remove you as the guarantor, as that would literally go against their whole business model. I very much doubt the ombudsman will side with you on this one too

    You could possibly get yourself removed as a guarantor if you have someone willing to take your place, and thats assuming they passed the relevant checks too

    As mentioned, you may be better off trying to secure cheaper finance to pay off the loan.
    fc92 wrote: »

    My issue is the top up was for quite a substantial amount more, nearly £5000. During the top up process it became apparent that in the first loan my wage had been duplicated on the initial loan pay out, as I only worked part time. This meant they had given me a loan on the basis I made over £1000, when my reality was I made just over £700. I also have no assets, literally. I still live with my parents after returning from travelling, and care for my sick father between working my part time role.

    This COULD potentially be a saving grace.. but to clarify, are you saying this was a mistake on Amigo's end? Like some sort of system error that caused your income to be duplicated? Or is this a mistake thats completely down to you?
  • CandyappleCandyapple Forumite, Board Guide
    3.4K posts
    Sixth Anniversary I'm a Volunteer Board Guide Combo Breaker Intrepid Forum Explorer
    Being a guarantor basically means that you promise to make the loan repayments if the borrower doesn’t pay.

    That quote is directly from their website.

    Unfortunately for you, the answer is no, they will not remove you. Sadly you are now having to pay for your poor decision of trusting your cousin. Although it could be worse, at least you only have to pay back £5k and not £50k. Take it as an expensive life lesson learned and never ever lend money to anyone again, regardless of their sob story.
    I'm a Board Guide on the Credit Cards, Loans, Credit Files & Ratings boards. I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly, and I can move and merge threads there. Any views are mine and not the official line of
  • foxy-stoatfoxy-stoat Forumite
    6.3K posts
    Fifth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    "Could I be removed as guarantor? Amigo Loans"...

    I read that and not the 914 other words in the opening post....answer = NO
  • edited 23 May 2019 at 9:41PM
    DCFC79DCFC79 Forumite
    38.9K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    edited 23 May 2019 at 9:41PM
    Do get this sorted asap, get rid of the amigo loan.

    What you do once this is done is up to you, whether you offer to help him or just leave him to it is up to you.

    Were you really duped ?

    Did you not read what you were asked to sign ?
  • edited 24 May 2019 at 9:12PM
    societys_childsocietys_child Forumite
    7K posts
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    edited 24 May 2019 at 9:12PM
    left by himself at quite a young age - 20
    Not that young, I got a mortgage and bought a house when I was 20, to house myself, my wife and my first child. I had been working for 5 years at that point . .

    As for Amigo Loans, I don't understand how people fall for it.
  • JayRitchieJayRitchie Forumite
    506 posts
    500 Posts Third Anniversary Name Dropper
    Good luck with claiming against Amigo but I think you have to assume it wont be successful. In reality you are probably going to have to pay off the debt and need to do so as soon as possible given the huge interest rates. I guess you need a full time job - better to bite the bullet than pay interest forever.
  • robatworkrobatwork Forumite
    5.8K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    You've already been given the answers.

    However let's not forget that it's your cousin who owes the money, but he now owes it to you instead of Amigo.

    If he ever gets any money or full time employment then you can haul him to court.
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