Financial counselling is a free and confidential service offered by Samaritans. Our counsellors operate across Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and the Hunter.
Our trained financial counsellors can help you with things like:
- Bills or fines you are struggling to pay
- Being chased for outstanding payments
- About to get property repossessed
- Behind in rent or house payments
- Finding it hard to manage your money
- Needing help to negotiate with creditors
- If you are facing problems due to gambling
Call 02 4993 3400 today and speak to our financial counsellors.
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens at a Financial Counselling appointment?
At your first appointment, you will be reminded that Financial Counsellors are independent, are not employed by a bank or creditor and operate under the National Credit Code. Our role is to be an advocate for you with whatever creditor you are indebted to.
Your first appointment is about gaining information and giving you options. We don’t tell you what to do. You can see and learn about the options and choose what is best for you.
How much does Financial Counselling cost?
It’s free. Financial Counselling is government funded and therefore it is free for you to access.
Are Financial Counsellors trained?
All Financial Counsellors are diploma trained in Financial Counselling and all must be members of their relevant state association, therefore operating under a strict code of ethics.
Financial Counsellors undergo continuous training in their areas of expertise.
Can I go to a Financial Counsellor more than once?
Yes, you can come back to a financial counsellor more than once, at no cost.
Many people’s lives are becoming more financially complicated as they find themselves in a debt cycle. It takes time to undo that so you are entitled to more than one appointment.
You may even wish to return after one or two years for ongoing support. This is acceptable and even encouraged if you think you need the support.
How is Financial Counselling different to the companies on TV that offer to help with debt?
Companies that often advertise on TV offering debt help are vastly different to Financial Counsellors.
Financial Counselling is free; there is no fee to help you. Even if you want to come back more than once.
Financial Counsellors can do anything – and more – compared to for-profit agencies offering debt help. These agencies charge a fee and often promise the world but sometimes don’t give you the full facts.
Financial Counselling is about giving you all of the information about the help you are entitled to and can access, and helping you to make an informed decision in regard to your debt and be an advocate for you.
Can Financial Counsellors actually make my creditor stop calling me?
The term “Financial Counsellor” is written in to Credit Code. That means that when a Financial Counsellor contacts a creditor on your behalf, they must listen. Financial Counsellors are able to find options to make your debt manageable and stop your creditor harassing you.
Your first appointment
We will listen carefully to your situation and together we will work out the best options for you.
Bring with you:
- Details of your income or Centrelink statement
- Details of your usual expenses; food, electricity, rent, rates, vehicle expenses etc.
- Copies of letters from creditors or banks
- Bank statements
- Letter from your doctor if you are suffering ill health
Contact our friendly team on 02 4922 1509.