Who Does What for Consumer Protection in Northern Ireland? – A Brief Overview Including Scams and Illegal Money Lending
Consumer protection is administrated by various government agencies. Businesses, charities, and other organisations are also involved from different perspectives. However, it is difficult to understand ‘who does what’ due to the complexity of the administrative structure and the social fabric. This brief overview aims to delineate some of the major entities’ roles in consumer protection and help readers find the right place to seek support. In later sections, this brief takes a close look at scams and illegal money lending in Northern Ireland given the prevalence and seriousness, aiming to inform readers of advice and help available for those issues.
This guide summarises the procedures for requesting a discretionary waiver of an overpayment from Debt Management, which is the part of the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) (in Great Britain) and the Department for Communities (DfC) (in Northern Ireland) that manages recovery of benefit overpayments (as well as other benefit debt, such as benefit advances and Social Fund or Discretionary Support loans).
Due to the expiry of transitional arrangements related to the introduction of the New State Pension in 2016, we are seeing an increasing number of queries about whether it is worthwhile buying missing National Insurance contributions.
Our latest Policy and Information Briefing provides an update to the Energy Bills Support Scheme and Alternative Fuels Payment, and answers frequently asked questions about the schemes.
The FRA is a Northern Ireland Housing Association (NIHE) project to implement the proposals for change to the housing allocation service.
This briefing provides an updated introduction to the support provided by the government to address the cost of living crisis, sharing as much information as is currently available
Given the time of year, we can expect an increase in enquiries from students on a range of issues, including entitlement to benefit. In the following briefing we lay out the rules that apply for students seeking to make a claim for Universal Credit, which is the main low-income benefit for claimants of working age.
Advice NI has launched a campaign to lobby for action from the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions in respect of the overpayment recovery waiver system.
The primary purpose of this briefing is to address entitlement to the Universal Credit childcare element, with specific reference to issues relating to recent changes to the definition of ‘relevant’ (i.e. qualifying) childcare. However, the briefing will also address other sources of support with the costs of childcare for low income families, as well as considering how the relative value of the support available might impact better-off calculations for those claimants.
In light of an expected increase in queries in this area and the swiftly developing policy environment, we present a number of links to useful information sources covering the help available to those fleeing the war in Ukraine.
In light of an increase in enquiries in this area from clients, we wanted to draw attention to an aspect of the benefit management system that is not well understood: the work of the Risk Review Team. Part of the reason for the lack of clarity about risk review is the limited information available in the public domain.
This document is a collection of links to relevant online information sources relating to welfare benefits, which should assist you in answering the majority of questions clients will have. It is compiled and updated by the Advice NI Information Officer but the majority of the information is produced by other agencies.
This guide provides information on payments and grants available to low-income households, grants available to higher income households, and other useful information and support.
This information briefing paper covers the basic eligibility, claim information, and social policy issues for Bereavement Support Payments in Northern Ireland.
As part of its post-Covid recovery plan the NI Executive has decided to introduce a High Street Scheme to boost demand in struggling towns, city centres and local businesses. The scheme is being delivered by the Department for the Economy to address declining footfall and spending.
This briefing paper explains the Limited Capability for Work and Work Related Activity Element in Universal Credit and covers the relevant period, exemptions, backdating, and change of circumstances.