If you are over 18 (or exceptionally over 16) and living in Northern Ireland, you might be able to claim additional financial support to meet the costs of a crisis or an emergency situation.
You might also be eligible for additional support if you receive Universal Credit or another means-tested benefit.
Discretionary support is available to help people meet short-term living expenses or pay for household items.
You do not need to be claiming benefits to be eligible for Discretionary Support – it is also available to people on a low income.
To be eligible, you must be in an extreme/exceptional situation or in a crisis which puts you or your immediate family’s health, safety or wellbeing at significant risk.
Some examples of when Discretionary Support can help are:
- A household appliance breaks down and you cannot afford to replace it.
- There is a fire at your home and you need to replace essential belongings.
- You are evicted and you do not have enough money to pay a deposit for a new rental property.
Eligibility for Discretionary Support depends on your individual circumstances and those of your family. One condition of eligibility is that your total household, net annual income must not be more than £22,230.
Discretionary support might be paid as a loan or a grant. There are specific rules on how many loans and grants you can receive in a 12-month period.
For further information on Discretionary Support and how to apply, visit:
The Adviser Discretion Fund (ADF) is a non-repayable grant of up to £1,500 (within a 12-month period) to pay for goods or services that help remove obstacles to employment.
A grant can be used in many ways, such as helping towards training costs, the costs of setting up as self-employed and childcare costs.
You might be eligible for a grant from the ADF if you are aged 16 and a lone parent or if you or your partner is receiving a qualifying benefit.
Qualifying benefits are
- JSA (including National Insurance credits only)
- New Style or contributory JSA
- Incapacity Benefit
- Income-related ESA
- New Style ESA
- Income Support
- Universal Credit
- Pension Credit
- Maternity Allowance
- Carer’s Allowance
- Carer’s Credit
- Working Tax Credits
- Housing Benefit.
You might also be eligible for a grant if you receive one of the above benefits and you are intending to take up additional hours or an additional job to allow you to progress in work.
You can apply to the Adviser Discretion Fund by contacting your local Jobs and Benefits Office.
For more information on the Adviser Discretion Fund, visit: