Citizen’s Advice – a network of 316 independent charities throughout the United Kingdom that give free, confidential information and advice to assist people with money, legal, consumer and other problems – knows exactly what you’re worrying about.
According to search data on the Citizens Advice website tracked through the end of 2017, leading queries include matters of the wallet, heart and workplace.
The top search terms show people are seeking advice about about debt, divorce, benefits, and personal independence payments. Other queries in the top 10 include housing, employment and support allowance, dismissal, parking fines and maternity.
Since Citizens Advice started tracking the data three years ago, questions about debt, benefits and housing have consistently remained in the top 10. Following the Brexit vote, questions about residency status and employment rights surged in popularity.
The charity reports that nine in 10 clients said their problem affected their lives, including causing anxiety and financial difficulty.
Some 80% experienced a shock or life event before their problem, while two in three say they had difficulty knowing who to contact or how systems work before advice.
“We believe individuals should be able to get help in the way that works for them and meets their needs,” reads a statement from the organisation. “We’re here to help everyone in society that needs us.”
Fortunately, evidence on the effectiveness of the charity’s free advice provision shows the service works for many. Some seven in 10 people were reportedly helped to solve their problem, while 82% said advice improved their lives. For more information on the service, visit their website.
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