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Advice on unofficial public relations work in the Balearics

Young British nationals travelling to Majorca will receive tips on how to avoid exploitation as part of an annual Border Force operation designed to safeguard holiday makers.

Collection methods adding half a billion in fees to people’s council tax debt, Citizens Advice reveals

Outdated and punitive council tax regulations are encouraging local authorities to collect arrears aggressively – and it’s causing people serious financial harm, says Citizens Advice.

Its new research shows missing an average council tax payment of £167, in the first month of the financial year, can escalate to a debt of over £2,065 in just 9 weeks.

Six of the 11 new cars launched in 2019 rated poor for security by Thatcham Research

Thatcham Research publishes security ratings to help consumers better understand the theft risk of new cars against a back drop of rising vehicle thefts. The new ratings assess whether measures to specifically address the keyless entry/start vulnerability, have been adopted.

Six of the 11 vehicles launched in 2019 have been given a ‘Poor’ rating as the keyless entry/start system they have as an option has no security measures to prevent theft by criminals using the so-called ‘Relay Attack’ technique. Without this option, the overall security features were classified as ‘Good’.

Drivers to receive greater protection against rogue private parking operators

Motorists across Britain will have greater protections against bogus parking fines as new measures to clamp down on rogue private parking firms become law.

HMRC warns of landline scams threatening households

Households with a landline number should be vigilant of phone calls from fraudsters pretending to be the tax authority, warns HM Revenue and Customs.

As HMRC has increasingly cracked down on email and SMS phishing, a rising number of criminals are turning to the traditional method of cold-calling publicly available phone numbers to steal money from taxpayers. Often these calls are to landline numbers.

Don’t miss out on the Help to Save scheme

More than 90,000 people have signed up to the government’s new saving account – Help to Save – depositing over £13 million.

The account offers working people on low incomes a 50% bonus, rewarding savers with 50p for every £1 saved.

Over 4 years, a maximum bonus of £1,200 is available on savings of up to £2,400. Over 250 people each day are taking up the offer and customers are making the most of its maximum £50-a-month deposit, saving on average around £47 each month.

New law protects tenants from unfair letting fees

Tenant Fees Act puts a stop to unnecessary, costly fees imposed on tenants by landlords or letting agents
New Act bans unfair letting fees and caps tenancy deposits at 5 weeks’ rent, with ban on fees to take effect from 1 June 2019
Measures expected to save renters at least £240 million a year – or up to £70 per household

Marriage Allowance promoted on Valentine’s Day

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is sharing the love this Valentine’s Day and encouraging married couples and those in a civil partnership to sign up for Marriage Allowance.

More than 3.5 million couples are already benefitting from Marriage Allowance, which was introduced in April 2015, but HMRC estimates around 700,000 couples are still eligible for the free tax break worth up to £238 this year. If their claim is backdated, they could receive a lump sum of up to £900.

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