Three in five people who are struggling with financial difficulties have not sought debt advice to help them manage their problems, a new report has revealed.
A study by the Money Advice Trust, conducted in conjunction with Equifax, found some debtors believe there is a stigma attached to admitting to money worries and difficulties.
Joanna Elson, chief executive of the trust, said: "This new research is extremely worrying as our experience suggests that if you do get into difficultly, seeking advice as soon as possible is the best option to help you sort out your problems."
She added that there are always routes out of financial difficulties and the earlier a person seeks help, the more options will be open to them.
One possibility is an individual voluntary arrangement, usually referred to as an IVA.
These agreements allow a struggling borrower to repay an affordable monthly sum for a set period of time, at the end of which any remaining debt is written off.
Creditors can receive tax breaks to ensure they do not loose out through such arrangements and debtors are usually made debt-free after a period of five years.