Perth Citizens' Advice Bureau Positive Futures! - Case study 01

Participant 

Perth-CAB-01

Name of Positive Futures! Provider 

Perth Citizens' Advice Bureau

Background

This paricipant is a 28-year-old single mother of four children all under the age of ten. When she was referred to Positive Futures she was struggling to manage day-to-day. Her long-term partner had left her, she had fallen into significant rent arrears and she was struggling to balance her finances with the loss of the family’s full-time wage. Along with rent arrears the client also had significant Council Tax arrears, arrears to her electricity provider and commercial debts which totalled approximately £20,000.

What happened 

The participant had recently started to receive statutory sick pay as the stress of the situation had made her unwell and unfit for work, further reducing her income. Through a series of one-to-one meetings, she was helped to maximise her income but correct her benefit awards; she was still claiming tax credits as though a couple, and her ex-partner’s income was still being used to calculate towards the household income. Several face-to-face in-depth budgeting sessions were held to collaboratively create a balanced financial statement with the client. After both income maximisation and expenditure reduction the client was left with a budget which still showed a small monthly deficit, but which she was comfortable she could further manage to budget to redress.

 

How did we help

As the participant was left with no surplus to offer payments to her creditors and redress her rent arrears specifically (this being the largest threat to her family), after a detailed discussion of her options to receive relief from her debt she decided to apply for bankruptcy. We negotiated with the Council on behalf of the client to make them aware of this and to confirm that a declaration of bankruptcy would not affect her tenancy. Bankruptcy was concluded with the help of our Positive Futures Debt Adviser.

Outcome and next steps

When we followed up with the client, she expressed that her levels of stress and anxiety have dropped to the bare minimum and she has now returned to work feeling very confident about her ability to manage her finances, and that she will not fall into difficulties again.

How can you get support and advice from Perth Citizens’ Advice Bureau?

To make an appointment please call the Positive Futures team on 01738 450581 or email: 

 The Positive Futures programme is part-funded by the European Social Fund, Perth & Kinross Council and The Gannochy Trust.