Financial Counselling

Specific assistance is offered to people with financial difficulties arising from the gambling behavior of themselves, a family member, or a friend. Financial Counsellors can help by providing information and support, advice about government concessions and entitlements, and information about where to get food vouchers and other forms of assistance.

Anyone financially affected by gambling can use this service.

The counsellors at Gambler’s Help are fully qualified and have significant experience.

You can meet with a Gambler’s Help Financial Counsellor to discuss options that are personalised to your situation.

They can help you

  • provide financial and paralegal information to resolve debts occurring in your name
  • provide an holistic financial assessment
  • explain what you can do if you have difficulty paying bills, fines or debts
  • consider how best to protect your assets, such as your house
  • find out about all debts and who is responsible for each debt
  • check whether you are entitled to any concessions and entitlements and provide information on where to obtain food vouchers and other types of assistance
  • discuss strategies to separate your finances to reduce risk, for example
    • arrange separate bank accounts
    • cancel joint credit cards
    • pay bills out of an account that only a non-gambler has access to
    • cancel redraw facility on a home loan
    • ensure two signatures required for withdrawals
    • limit access to cash
  • discuss making priority payments, for example rent and utilities, via Centrepay or direct debt on payday
  • access Gamblers Help Counselling if and when you want to

Financial Counsellors cannot

  • make any decisions on your behalf
  • organise a debt consolidation loan
  • provide investment advice

Financial assistance

Victorians with gambling problems may be eligible for financial help under the Recovery Assistance Program. Under this program, gamblers who are in financial crisis may be eligible for help with essential living needs.

This financial assistance is only available

  • in a way that does not facilitate or subsidise gambling behaviour
  • following an assessment that the person with a gambling issue and their family is in genuine need
  • for essential living needs
  • to support individuals and families to recover from the impact of problem gambling
  • to registered Gambler’s Help clients

For more information, or to make an appointment to speak to a Financial Counsellor, call us on (03) 5337 3333 or 1800 858 858 (after hours).  Alternatively you can CONTACT US.

Visit moneysmart.gov.au for more information, tips and tools to help you manage your finances, including

  • money management as a tool to help you cut down your gambling
  • gambling calculator to find out how much you really spend on gambling
  • protecting your assets when someone close to you has an issue with gambling

 

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