The Openwork Partnership finds families gave £11.2billion in Covid-19 financial support


New research* from The Openwork Partnership, one of the UK’s largest and longest established financial advice and investment networks, shows families have provided £11.2 billion in financial support to other struggling family members during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The average handout has been more than £470 but around one in 12 (8%) who have received cash have been given more than £1,000, the study found.

Parents have been the main source of financial help during the pandemic with two-thirds (65%) of those who have asked for support being bailed out by their parents. But nearly one in five (19%) say they have received money from their adult children.

Around 19% of adults questioned – the equivalent of more than six million people – say they have asked family for help to cope financially during the past year with day-to-day expense the biggest reason for seeking support.

Nearly two -fifths (36%) who have asked for cash say they needed the money for living costs while 29% took a one-off cash lump sum. Around 14% needed help paying their mortgage or rent and 19% asked for money for a major purchase.

Under-35s were the most likely to ask for money with 45% asking for help but around 18% of 35 to 55-year-olds also needed family backing to cope.

The Openwork Partnership’s research is part of its Viewpoint series looking at intergenerational wealth and the issues faced by families with supporting children and helping out other family members.

Mike Morrow, Chief Commercial Officer at The Openwork Partnership, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has hit millions financially as workers have been furloughed or lost their jobs and business owners have struggled to keep their companies afloat.

“Families have played their part in helping other members out when they are struggling with more than £11 billion paid out during the pandemic with parents the main source of extra cash.  It is also interesting to see that adult children are also helping out when they can.

“Financial advice is important to help people get their finances back in shape whether they have given money or had to ask for it during the crisis, demonstrating how important advice is and the role it plays in what are very personal situations.”

The table below shows how many adults around the country have had to ask family for financial help during the pandemic. More than one in four (26%) in London have sought financial support with people in the West and East Midlands also likely to ask for help.  


London 26%
West Midlands 25%
East Midlands 24%
North West 23%
South East 21%
Wales 21%
Yorkshire & Humberside 19%
North West 18%
Scotland 16%
South West 12%
East Anglia 12%

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