BNZ and other lenders are waiving debts incurred in abusive relationships

December 2, 2021

Bank of New Zealand and some other lenders have waived the debts of victims of economic abuse.

Economic abuse, and the economic harm it causes, is, as AUT University senior lecturer Ayesha Scott called it, the “weaponising of money” by an intimate partner.

Victim-survivor advocates said economic abuse could include a variety of controlling methods. It often included male partners, or relatives, of a woman coercing her to take out loans in her name for their benefit.

Women, and less commonly men, who suffered economic abuse often found the consequences of that abuse would linger long after they escape the relationship as they struggled with damaged credit scores and debts that they were left to repay alone, advocates said.


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