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What we do

•  telephone advice & casework  •  face to face work  •  debt advice  •  benefits advice  •  money handling   •  talks and education  • 

 

 Telephone Advice & Casework Services

We provide money and debt advice services, including casework, by phone to people who have money and debt difficulties. In this way we can support clients nationwide. The service is always free to clients and is independent of the organisations who fund us. Clients don’t have to travel anywhere and we phone out to clients who can speak to an adviser in complete confidence. 

 

Face to Face Advice

We specialise in working with clients who find it difficult to access mainstream advice services, and seek to deliver our services in a way that is accessible to anyone needing them, whether this is by offering home visits, taking time to establish working relationships with clients who are reluctant to engage, finding out the best way to communicate with an individual, and/or working with other support services, and interpreters. We have expertise and experience in working with people including those experiencing mental illness, dementia, fluctuating mental capacity, with learning disabilities, sensory loss, substance misuse, refugees and asylum seekers and people with physical disabilities.

 

Debt Advice

Many of the people we help are in financial distress with debts that have built up over time to become unmanageable. Our advisers provide expert help which deals with the immediate problems, as well as providing the longer term support that people need to make their money and debt manageable in the future. We may work with a client for a few weeks or months depending on the circumstances. 

Our advice services help clients to:

  • Deal with current debt problems
  • Manage essential bill payments
  • Understand their rights
  • Understand about legal action taken by creditors
  • Offer repayment by contacting creditors on their behalf
  • Receive advice about state benefits and tax credits
  • Make cost savings and maximise income


Where clients want to resolve their problems themselves we provide the information, advice and support to empower them to do this. This includes drafting a workable budget, a copy of the Common Financial Statement, and letters to enable them to approach creditors with offers of repayment. 

Some clients may need more in depth support. We will contact creditors on their behalf and arrange for reduced payments to be made at an affordable level.
We provide all clients with debts with information and guidance about such things as County Court Judgments (CCJs), court procedures, bailiffs, repossession, Debt Management Plans, Bankruptcy and Debt Relief Orders and Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVA)

 

Welfare Benefits Advice

We hold the AQS accreditation for the quality of our advice and casework. We will check that a person is receiving the correct benefits for their individual circumstances, advise and assist with new claims, and provide a casework service and representation at appeal tribunals.

 

Money Handling

If people need practical help organising their money, we are also able to help with this. We are funded by Brighton & Hove City Council to provide money support to people who have been referred to us by Social Services and who are eligible for free care. People who need support with their money who have been assessed as being fully self funding (or people who live outside Brighton & Hove) can choose to pay us directly for this service. The aim of this service is to enable people to remain independent in their own homes, and we are experienced in supporting people in accordance with the Mental Capacity Act, to make their own decisions wherever possible. 

Here are some examples of how we help people with money handling:

  • We can deliver cash in their own homes to people who can't get out to the bank
  • We can pay bills for people who find it difficult to remember what needs to be paid
  • we can help people stick to their budgets by administering all their payments for them 
  • We're able to act as appointee and deputy for people unable to deal with their finances themselves

 

We have contracts with Brighton & Hove City Council to work with the following Groups of People:

  • Older people who need support
  • Older people with mental health needs and dementia
  • Working age people with mental ill health
  • People with substance misuse and alcohol misuse issues
  • People with learning disabilities
  • people with physical disabilities
  • other people with social care needs

Our support is flexible and person centred - this means that people are encouraged and supported to do as much for themselves as they can. 

 

Talks & Education

We offer budgetting, debt and money management workshops and training sessions to groups of individiuals and workers supporting clients with money. 

If you would like us to come along to talk to your group, or if we can support your project or organisation with expert money management, debt or benefits advice, contact Jackie Grigg, Money Advice Plus Director on 01273 664000 or jackie.grigg@macss.org

 

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"Money Advice Plus got me out of a big hole. I was depressed. Clearing debts got me out of the mire and helped me go forward, it gave me a way out."

"I was absolutely amazed! I am so grateful for your help with my financial difficulties. I wouldn't have even known about applying for assistance with utility bills and other things without your assistance."

"We've found Money Advice Plus very useful over the past few months. It is very re-assuring to be able to direct our residents to an agency we know will be able to clarify any money concerns. What they've liked the most is that you come to their homes to explain and help. They say it's a much more personal service than working with the Pension Service, and much less daunting."

Anchor scheme manager

 

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