There are a range of charitable organisations specialising in debt advice. These include:
National Debtline can be contacted on 0808 808 4000. Lines are open Monday to Friday 9am to 9pm; Saturday 9.30am to 1pm. The website address is www.nationaldebtline.org.
StepChange Debt Charity can be contacted on 0800 138 1111. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am until 8pm, Saturday 9am to 4pm. The website address is http://www.stepchange.org/.
Universal Credit is a new type of benefit designed to support people who are on a low income or out of work.
Universal Credit will replace:
Any benefits received which are not included in the above list will continue to be paid as usual, such as Child Benefit, Carers Allowance, Personal Independence Payment, Council Tax Support and so on.
Universal Credit will be paid once a month, as a single payment, into the claimants chosen account. The first payment will be made one calendar month and seven days after the date of claim, and then calendar monthly after that.
Claims are expected to be made online. Assisting with online claims at Jobcentres andLocal Councils can provide support.
The Money Advice Service is a fantastic new tool that offers everything from budget planning to benefit advice and debt advice.
It’s online and free. Simply go to their website http://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk and click on the ‘Your money’ tab.
As well as lots of general information, at the bottom of this page is their ‘personal money health check’.
This fully automated, anonymous process will ask questions with ‘yes or ‘no’ type answers and lead to a plan to get day-to-day money back on track. It covers a lot of ground, from finding out whether people are getting all the benefits their entitled, checking they are not paying too much tax, giving tips on boosting income, right down to how to make savings by getting better deals.
Depending on which sections are answered and how fast buttons are clicked the whole process can take up to an hour.
The application can be saved at any time during the process, to enable it to be progressed at another time.
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