Richard and his wife Josephine came to see us initially about small debts. Josephine ran a small business but a recently diagnosed health condition had prevented her from working. They therefore needed help with debts and benefits.

We helped them check their benefit entitlement and assisted with the process of claiming as neither was confident using a computer. We also helped them arrange repayments for the debts that they owed – mainly to family and friends. The couple were very grateful for our help and relieved that they would be entitled to welfare support.

Four months later, Richard came to see us again. Very sadly, his wife Josephine had died and with no family nearby Richard was feeing extremely isolated and lonely and anxious about the change in his financial situation.

He was worried about how he would pay for the cost of his wife’s funeral as he had already used some of his savings to pay off a loan taken out by his wife.

Our advisers supported Richard through this extremely difficult time, helping him to liaise with the Pension Service to receive additional pension credit, and get a reduction to his annual Council Tax payments as well as assess what additional benefits Richard might be entitled to.

Our advisers periodically phoned Richard to check how he was getting on with his benefits claims. He was very pleased to have this contact which gave him the opportunity to ask questions throughout the period following the loss of his wife.

Our most recent call found Richard a much happier and confident person who was on top of his finances and feeling much less anxious. He was extremely grateful for the good advice and follow-up calls he had received throughout such a difficult time.