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Thursday , July , 25 2024
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Benefits Advice

Our benefits advice team are specialist welfare rights advisors who provide a comprehensive advice service on the whole range of benefits provided by the Department for Work and Pensions, Cumbria County Council and Carlisle City Council.

Advisors can

  • give advice on the claiming of benefits such as Universal Credit, Employment & Support Allowance, Income Support, Jobseeker’s Allowance, Personal Independence Payment, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Reduction, Social fund payments and Welfare Assistance Scheme
  • check whether you are receiving your correct entitlement to benefit
  • help with appeals, mandatory reconsiderations and reviews

Based at the Civic Centre, in Carlisle, the Benefit Advice Service offers appointments at the Civic Centre and at outreach surgeries available at:

  • Longtown;
  • Brampton;


Please contact us on 01228 817400  to discuss an appointment.

Other sources of help and advice

HM Revenue and Customs can offer advice on Income Tax, Tax Credits, Child Benefit, National Insurance and Reclaiming tax.

The Department for Works and Pensions can offer advice on a wide range of Benefits. They have trained advisors to offer you advice on financial help and support which may be available to you.

GDPR and Confidentiality - Information and Privacy Notice

Who is responsible for your information?

Carlisle City Council, through its Benefit Advice Service, is the data controller for the personal information we will collect from you and under the General Data Protection Regulation, this fair processing notice is designed to provide you with all the information with which you have a right to be provided.

Why are we collecting your personal information?

At the Benefit Advice Service we collect and use your personal information to help us advise you on what benefits, tax credits, universal credit and/or council tax reduction you may be entitled to claim and challenge any decisions you disagree with.

What allows us to collect your personal information?

Your consent and explicit consent allows us to process your information (GDPR Article 6(1)(a) & (GDPR Article 9 (1)).

What personal information we will ask for?

The personal information we will gather is your name, address, date of birth, telephone number, National Insurance number, nationality, language, your housing status, your marital status, your employment status, your health, income and capital/savings. We may also need to collect information regarding your household. If you are unable to provide us with this information then we may not be able to advise you on your benefit entitlement.

How long will we keep your personal information?

Your information will be retained for a minimum period of six years from the date of your last contact with the Benefit Advice Service, in compliance with Carlisle City Council’s retention schedule.

What will we do with your personal information?

Your personal information will be confidential to the Benefit Advice Service and will be processed on a confidential Case Management system by a company called IIZUKA. All information held electronically is password protected and all paper documents are stored in locked cabinets/cupboards. We operate a clear desk policy.

When we will use your information without your permission

In most cases, we will get your permission to collect, use, store and share your information. But at times we might use or share your information without your permission.

This could include the following situations:

  • To comply with the law, called ‘legal obligation’ – for example, a court orders us to share information.
  • To protects someone’s life, called ‘vital interests’ – for example, sharing information with a paramedic if a client becomes unwell during an appointment.
  • To carry out our reporting functions, called ‘legitimate interests’ – for example to create anonymous case studies and statistics to present to Council.
  • To defend our legal rights- for example, to resolve a complaint that we gave wrong advice.

We will always make sure that there is a legal basis for taking this action.

Your rights are:

  • To be informed
  • To have access to your personal information
  • To have inaccurate personal information rectified
  • To have personal information erased
  • To restrict processing of your personal information
  • To obtain and reuse your personal information for your own purposes
  • To object to the processing of personal information
  • To not be subject to decisions based solely on automated means, including profiling


Further information

Should you be unhappy with the way the Benefit Advice Service has handled your personal information, we encourage you to let us know so that we can look into this for you and provide a response.

Should you then wish to lodge a complaint with ICO you can contact them at:


Address: Information Commissioner’s Officer, Wycliffe House,

Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: 0303 123 1113

The Benefit Advice Service can be contacted at:

Address: Civic Centre, Carlisle,

Cumbria, CA3 8QG

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: 01228 817400

Carlisle City Council’s Data Protection Officer can be contacted at:

Address: Civic Centre, Carlisle,

Cumbria, CA3 8QG

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: 01228 817200

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