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My employer says I owe them money. What can I do?


When you leave a job, your employer can only ask you to pay back money if it’s for something you’ve specifically agreed to in writing. Even if you do owe your employer money, they can only take it from your pay if there’s a written agreement to say they can. Check if you owe your […]

I’ve just had my hours cut at work. I’d like to take on a second job, but there’s nothing around. It sounds ridiculous to talk about Christmas now, but I’m already worrying! I usually start buying the kids a few presents really early to spread the cost – but that’s going to be impossible this year. How can I make less go further, without going into debt?


I’m sorry to hear about the cut in your hours, and what it means for you. It sounds like you’re normally very organised, and I’m sure this will stand you in good stead. There are steps you can take to avoid your bills from building up. Look at ways to boost your income. A fall […]

I’ve worked at the same company for many years but I’ve been told I’m being made redundant. What redundancy pay am I entitled to?


If you’re being made redundant, there are two types of redundancy pay you could get. ‘Statutory’ redundancy pay is the minimum that the law says you’re entitled to, or ‘contractual’ redundancy pay, which is extra money your contract says you can get on top of the statutory amount.   You’re usually only entitled to statutory […]

I have noticed some payments coming out of my bank account where I do not recognise the amounts or names of the firms paid. What can I do?


It pays to keep a close eye on your bank statements.  In these days of on-line banking, on-line shopping and payment by contactless card, all of which have for obvious reasons become more popular during the current pandemic, our accounts are more than ever vulnerable to fraudulent exploitation by unscrupulous criminals. Scammers often take small […]

I am in arrears with my Council Tax. What should I do?


If you’ve missed a Council Tax payment, you’re in ‘arrears’ – this means you owe money to your council. Don’t wait for them to contact you. You should contact your council straight away. Ask to speak to someone in the Council Tax office and tell them about your situation. If you ignore Council Tax arrears, […]

UC in Cumbria Report


We have recently worked with other Citizens Advice across Cumbria to look at issues related to Universal Credit in the county. We are making this report available for all to read and is available in PDF format. UC in Cumbria report 2020

Advice Column: Disabled Facilities Grant


I have a disability and I am struggling to live independently. Can I get any help with the costs of adapting my home? A disabled facilities grant is a grant that you can get from your local authority for work that is essential to help a disabled person live an independent life. You can, for […]

Advice Column: Home Improvements


Can I get help from the council to improve my home? A local authority can offer different types of help with home improvements. To find out if you can get help with home improvements and the help available in your area, contact your local authority. Your local authority may give you help to:- adapt, improve, […]

Advice Column: Council Tax Arrears


My first council tax bill of the year has come through and I know I’m not going to be able to afford it with so many other important bills to pay, let alone food. What should I do? Council tax arrears is a “priority debt”, which means you need to address it before paying off […]