What We Do
There are a number of different ways that Citizens Advice advisers can help people to resolve a problem.
Advisers do not tell clients what to do, but explain their options and the possible outcomes of different courses of action. Clients are encouraged to make their own decisions and act on their own behalf. We enable clients to manage their own problems by focusing on their needs as individuals.
Citizens Advice advisers, all of whom are trained, can:
- interview clients face-to-face and by telephone to find out their problem(s);
- access our regularly updated electronic information database for up to the minute information;
- help clients to negotiate with companies or service providers such as creditors or to appeal against decisions, for example, social security benefit claims;
- write letters or phone companies and service providers on behalf of clients;
- help clients to prioritise their problems, for example, to sort out which debts are most important;
- help clients with form filling, for example, to claim social security benefits;
- represent clients in court and at tribunals;
- refer clients to Citizens Advice specialist caseworkers for complex problems or to other agencies when appropriate.
Know Your Rights
Our trained advisers provide specialist information and advice on 14 different areas of the law including consumer issues, employment legislation, social security benefits, money advice, health, housing rights and other legal matters.
The Principles of Citizens Advice
Advice is provided from 29 frontline offices across Northern Ireland and over 100 other outlets and is:
- free - no-one has to pay for any part of the service we provide;
- impartial - we don't judge our clients or make assumptions. Our service is open to everyone and we treat everyone equally;
- confidential - we won't pass on anything a client tells us or even the fact that they have visited us - without their permission;
- independent - we always act in the interests of our clients without influence from any outside bodies.