Can I Get a Payday Loan if I’m Unemployed?

Payday loans in the UK are a type of short-term loan which is designed to cover emergency expenses that may come up before your next payday. If you are unemployed, you may still qualify for a payday loan, loan for £200 or otherwise, if you can prove an alternative source of income; however, it may not be advisable. 

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Due to short-term loan periods and the high-risk borrower profiles, payday loans incur some of the highest APR rates around.

Many people ask the question, “Can I get a payday loan if I’m unemployed?” as more and more people in the UK face financial pressures, including those that are unemployed.

Can I Borrow Money If I Am Unemployed?

It can be more difficult to qualify for a loan and to borrow money online if you are unemployed, but it is still possible. When it comes to taking out a payday loan, you can apply even if you do not have full-time employment.

However, the loan providers will need to be able to verify an alternative source of income. If you cannot provide proof of income, you will likely struggle to qualify for a loan.

What Do You Need to Qualify for a UK Payday Loan?

To qualify for a payday loan in the UK, you will need to meet the credit and affordability requirements set by the lender. In most cases, you simply need:

  • a valid form of ID
  • an existing bank account
  • proof of income


However, it is always preferable to only apply for a payday loan in the UK from any broker or lender if you absolutely must and have no alternative options.

What Happens When You Borrow Money in the UK When Unemployed?

If you are applying for a payday loan or a short-term loan, it is highly likely that the lender in line to provide you with the loan you request will ask you to complete an affordability assessment. This is a way of assessing whether you can afford to repay the borrowed amount. It is important whether you borrow £500 or even just £100 that you are able to repay your loan in a timely manner

In case you are unemployed, lenders may ask for additional information, including information about benefits or pensions; records of self-employed income; regular payment from a partner, spouse, or ex-partner; or salary payments from an employer. This will vary from lender to lender.

Is It Risky to Get a Payday Loan If I Am Unemployed?

Payday loans in the UK and around the world are known for their very high APR rates and are notoriously difficult to repay. This means that if you are unemployed, you may be vulnerable to predatory lending practices.

Payday loans are a very expensive loan type due to their short-term basis and their high-risk nature. Some borrowers seek these funding options because they are in a bind and need a quick solution. However, sometimes the short term and expensive fees cause these borrowers to default on the payday loan. To compensate, payday lenders set extremely high APR in order to make a profit.

If you are unemployed and lack regular income from one source, taking out a payday loan is generally not advisable as you would be considered to have an unstable financial profile. Payday loans should only ever be used in emergency circumstances to help get people from payday to payday and cover any unanticipated costs that may come up in between. Relying on payday loans to cover everyday costs should never be a solution.

Author Maggie Clarke
Maggie Clarke Content Ops Lead
Maggie leads the content operations team at She is an expert on personal finance, by way of a lifetime of gathering practical knowledge on what to not do with your pocketbook. When not blogging about money, Maggie can be found rambling through the roughest terrains. She considers herself charming yet troublesome and would love to meet you someday, just not today.
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