Welfare Benefits Advice

What help can we offer you?

Our Welfare Benefits services are provided through various funding sources including Northampton Borough Council, East Northants Council, Children in Need and are an integral part of our Energy Advice Services

We provide a comprehensive casework service and support with appeals delivered by fully trained experienced staff covering all Welfare Benefit matters including:

  • Employment and Support Allowance
  • Universal Credit
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Jobseekers Allowance
  • Housing Benefit
  • Bereavement Benefits
  • Council Tax Support
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Carers Allowance
  • Maternity Benefits
  • Child Benefit
  • Benefit Overpayments
  • Challenging Benefit Decisions
  • Help with Appeals

Appointments with our specialist advisors are available at our offices in Northampton Wellingborough and Rushden and also at various outreach offices including some GP surgeries. We may also be able to visit you in your home if you are housebound. Welfare Benefit Drop-In Sessions are available in Northampton and Rushden.

If your problem is urgent, we will try to see you before any deadlines that you must meet. For non-urgent problems, demand for our service may sometimes mean that you have to wait for an appointment. You will be given the option of being referred to an alternative provider should the waiting time not be appropriate for your needs.

Which geographical areas do we cover?

Our Children’s Benefit Take-Up Project offering specialist benefit advice and help with claims for children who are experiencing ill health or who have a disability is a Countywide service

In East Northamptonshire we provide specialist Welfare Benefits advice to any resident in the area.

Welfare Benefits advice delivered by CLS through our Energy Advice Services is mainly focused on Northampton Borough, the Borough of Wellingborough, East Northamptonshire and South Northamptonshire. Residents living in Kettering or Corby Borough can be referred to our Citizens Advice service partner in those areas.

Our Welfare
Benefits
Advice Service
is Free,
Independent and
Confidential

How can you access this service?

An organisation that is already supporting you can make a referral.

Or you can visit our offices, email enquires@communitylawservice.org.uk or call 01604 621038. 

You can also make contact with some of our Projects via their own contact details. These include our Energy Advice Services and our Children’s Benefit Take-up Project.

We also offer Welfare Benefit Drop-In Advice Sessions at our offices in Northampton, Rushden and Wellingborough.

Drop-In Advice Services

One Stop Shop, Northampton
Tuesday 12.30pm – 2.30pm (including energy saving advice)
Thursday 9.30am – 11.30am

Rushden Advice Centre
Tuesday 12 noon – 2pm

In 2019 – 2020 we provided Welfare Benefits advice to over 3500 people and helped them to claim over £14million of additional benefit income

 “The advisor helped me to get my Personal Independence Payment including a backdated payment and having the extra money means I can manage so much better now.”

a Case Study

Client’s Situation & Enquiry:
Mrs D was a widow and living alone in a 3 bed Housing Association property. She had substantial health problems and did not want to downsize/leave the family home or her immediate area.

She was reliant on Benefit income and received Employment and Support Allowance, the Daily Living and Mobility components of Personal Independence Payment (PIP), maximum Housing Benefit meeting her rent aside from the 2 bedroom under-occupancy and maximum Council Tax Support.

She had received received a letter from the DWP advising she no longer had entitlement to an award of Personal Independence Payment following a new decision.  As a result of this her Employment and support Allowance was also reduced as she no longer qualified for a Severe Disability Premium.

Initial Advice Given & Action Agreed & Taken:
Mrs D was advised on the Benefit challenge procedure, with first action being taken to request a Mandatory Reconsideration of the decision to cease payment of PIP . Additional medical evidence was obtained to support the application .

In order to prevent rent arrears that were accruing due to the reduced income  a Discretionary Housing Payment was also applied for.

Outcomes Achieved:

  • Mrs D had the enhanced rate Daily Living & standard Rate Mobility components of PIP @ £110.85 per week reinstated and a backdated amount of £886.80.
  • As a subsequence, and as she continued to live alone with nobody claiming Carer’s Allowance for looking after her, she once again qualified for a Severe Disability Premium in her ESA award, which was also backdated to her PIP award. Backdated credit of £526.80, with ongoing weekly entitlement @ £65.85 per week, paid fortnightly.
  • She was assisted in registering for a Warm Home Discount via her electricity provider, affording a £140 credit to her electricity account for Winter’19-20, and placed on the Priority Service Registers for gas, electricity and also water.
  • Mrs D was awarded a Discretionary Housing Payment for an initial period of 2 months pending the outcome of the PIP decision

Total additional income received as result of the advice provided = £176.70 per week.

Enquiries

For general enquires, please contact us on:

Northampton

01604 621038

Rushden

01933 313020

Wellingborough

01933 278248