Welfare Benefit & Debt Courses

BTU TrainingWorking Age Benefits Half  Workshop

This half day workshop introduces the main non-means tested benefits for those of working age. It covers statutory sick pay, statutory maternity pay, statutory paternity pay, statutory adoption pay, contributory jobseekers allowance, carers allowance, maternity allowance, industrial injuries disablement benefit and bereavement benefits. It examines the qualifying conditions for each benefit and how individual entitlement is calculated. The workshop  is suitable for those who wish to develop an understanding of these benefits. It also deals with some of the problem areas involved with these benefits. The workshop is interactive and delivered using a variety of teaching methods including a presentation, group work, participation case studies and quizzes.

The workshop does not consider universal credit, income support, income based jobseekers allowance, employment support allowance, housing benefit, pension credit or tax credits as these are covered in separate courses.

Benefit Overpayments

This course outlines the law relating to overpayments of welfare benefits. It considers the common causes of benefit overpayments and the processes relating to the recovery of benefits. It also examines the legal and practical issues involved in disputing overpayment decisions.

The course also considers changes implemented under the Welfare Reform Act 2012.

The course assumes a good working knowledge of the welfare benefit system and is therefore suitable for those who wish to develop their understanding of overpayments. The course does not cover Tax Credit overpayments.

Housing Benefit Introductory

This course provides detailed knowledge of housing benefit. It examines qualifying conditions, rent restrictions, including local housing allowances, and the calculation of entitlement. It explores claiming procedures, discretionary housing payments and briefly considers the options available for challenging local authority decisions.

How Immigration Status Affects Benefits

This course looks at the benefit rules that relate to immigration status. It will cover who is excluded from the main benefits because they are a ‘person subject to immigration control’, what the exceptions to this are, the entitlements of mixed status households and the consequences of having a ‘no recourse to public funds restriction’.

The course is suitable for those with a working knowledge of benefits and is relevant for those providing benefits advice to non-European nationals.

Introduction to Social Security Related Benefits

This introductory course is aimed at professionals that provide support to benefit claimants and require a basic knowledge of benefits. It is intended to provide an overview of the benefits system and structure. It considers all the main benefits and allowances currently available, the basic qualifying conditions and how to identify entitlement.

Right to Reside

A course which looks in detail at the right to reside requirement that applies within certain benefits. The course covers the main groups that have a right to reside and how this can be affected by certain changes of circumstance. Significant developments in both case law and legislation over the last few years will be discussed. Those attending should have a working knowledge of benefits.

Benefit Sanctions:  How to avoid them, how to challenge them – Half Day Workshop

This half day workshop is designed to help advisors understand the rules around sanctions, which benefits they apply to and how to identify the actions that lead to a sanction. It will outline the appeals process and identify options for tenants, in particular the impact on Housing Benefit. This is an introductory workshop.

Universal Credit: The Basics Half Day Workshop

This half day mini introductory workshop  aims to provide an introduction to Universal Credit. It explains what universal credit is, when it is available, how it will be paid, explains what happens if someone cannot manage with a single monthly payment and provides tips on where to get further help and information.   It is suitable for those with limited knowledge of the benefits system.

Form Filling:  Personal Independence Payments & Employment Support Allowance 

The success (or failure) of a claim for ESA or PIP can often depend on how well the ESA50/PIP2 is completed.  It is usually the only opportunity available to the claimant to report their version of events.  Advisors play a key role in enhancing a client’s prospects of successfully completing the assessment.  This course focuses on the detail of the assessment criteria for ESA and PIP and aims to develop the advisors ability to support claimants with the completion of the ESA50 questionnaire and PIP 2 ‘How your disability affects you’ forms.  It will help individuals recognise the importance of the limited capability for work questionnaire, identify relevant information to include on a questionnaire or form and demonstrate how best to complete an effective form.  Those attending should have  a working knowledge of the basic rules for both PIP and ESA.

Employment Support Allowance

Employment Support Allowance (ESA) is a benefit for people who are unable to work due to illness or disability. This course examines the framework for ESA, including the qualifying conditions, the work capability assessment activities and descriptors.   It also examines ESA payment rates and the calculation of entitlements.  The course considers the system of conditionality and sanctions that apply to claimants who are accepted as having limited capability for work.  The course will also briefly cover challenging decisions.

Disability Living Allowance for Children

This one day course provides an introduction to Disability Living Allowance for children under 16.  It examines the basic qualifying conditions as well as those conditions related to care and mobility  needs.  It also provides an overview of the rules relating to the transition to Personal Independence Payments once a child reaches 16.  It briefly covers benefits for carer’s.  This course is pitched at introductory level.

Representing at First Tier Tribunals 

This one day course builds on the ‘Introduction to Challenging Decisions’ course by examining those processes involved in appealing  benefit decisions which fall under the remit of a First Tier Tribunal.  It also briefly considers the process of appealing to the Upper Tribunal.  It aims to develop the knowledge of advisors to effectively prepare them for representation at First Tier Tribunals. It will help individuals understand the appeals process, help identify the roles of those involved in an appeal hearing, show how to prepare a case on behalf of a client and help understand the  skills involved in effective representation. This course is suitable for experienced advisors who wish to take the next step of representing clients at a tribunal hearing.

Personal Independence Payments

Disability Living Allowance is gradually being replaced by Personal Independence Payments for claimants of working age.  This one day course examines the qualifying conditions for PIP, the assessment procedures, components and rates of payments as well as passported benefits.   It also considers the process of transferring existing DLA claimants onto PIP . This is an intermediate course which assumes some knowledge of Disability Living Allowance.

Introduction to Challenging Decisions

This one day course explores the processes and procedures relating to challenging decisions by way of  revision, supersession and appeal. It also briefly considers the process relating to Upper Tribunals.  The course aims to familiarise advisors with the rules and processes for challenging and altering decisions.  It will show participants how to request a revision, supersession or appeal, how to show grounds for making a late application and how to advise claimants effectively. This is an intermediate course which assumes a working knowledge of benefits.

Benefits for Older People

This one day course examines the main benefits and pensions available to people who have reached pensionable age. It considers the qualifying rules for pension credit, guarantee credit and savings credit.  It aims to help advisors be aware and understand the impact of state pension credit on other benefits, covers the basic rules of attendance allowance, carer’s allowance and state retirement pensions.  It also raises awareness of the rules for HB for those over pension age, the qualifying rules for obtaining help with council tax, health benefits, blue badge and the social fund.  This course does not cover care home fees or care services.  Those attending should have some understanding of the benefits system.

Benefits Update/Refresher

This one day course aims to provide an understanding of recent changes to welfare benefits legislation.  It is underpinned by training materials which include  exercises and case studies used to consolidate learning.  The course will focus on recent changes in welfare benefits, raise awareness of how and when forthcoming changes have/ will come into effect, recognise the key features of universal credit, personal independence payments and the new appeals. process.   This is an intermediate course which assumes a working knowledge of benefits.

Universal Credit:  The Full  Picture

This one day course provides a detailed examination of the Universal Credit provisions including the qualifying conditions, how to calculate entitlement, the conditionality and sanctions regime and detail of administration of the new system.   The course also considers the migration of existing claimants and the transitional rules. Participants will be shown how to identify the various elements of universal credit, understand claims and payments arrangements and be aware of how universal credit decisions can be challenged.  The course assumes a working knowledge of benefits.

Introduction to Debt Advice

Introduction to Debt Advice is a one day course which provides advisors with practical information necessary to provide basic budgeting advice and negotiating skills needed to arrange a favourable repayment arrangement with creditors. It considers the five stages of debt advice; information gathering, maximising income, preparing a personal budget, dealing with priority creditors and non-priority creditors.

Council Tax Liability & Enforcement

Many advisors provide help and support to clients with council tax issues.  This one day course provides guidance on the rules relating to council liability and enforcement.  It looks at chargeable and exempt dwellings, who is liable, appeals, statutory enforcement in England and Wales, liability orders, methods of recovery and appeals/complaints.  The course is particularly useful for debt and benefit advisers.

Birmingham Training Unit

View Training Courses at BTU Events Calendar

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