If you're having problems with debt, your starting point should be the [National Debt Helpline](https://ndh.org.au/) 1800 007 007 for financial counselling support.
Financial counselling helps you manage your debts and get your finances back under control.
Get advice about
- Your financial situation, to help you fully understand your position.
- How to prioritise your debts
- The pros and cons of the options that might work for you in addressing your debts (for example, repayment of loans, negotiating with creditors, bankruptcy and so on. There are always options.
- Your rights and responsibilities around credit and debt
- How to access other services you may need, such as legal services, crisis food and accommodation services, and health services.
Financial counselling is free, confidential and independent. The [National Debt Helpline](https://ndh.org.au/) is a not-for-profit, community based service that's available to people in Australia experiencing financial difficulty.
Please call 1800 007 007 to talk about your situation or send us a [message here.](https://ndh.org.au/about-national-debt-helpline/contact-us/)
For South Australians needing advice or assistance with managing the cost of living or budgeting. The Helpline provides information, advice and referrals to appropriate services such as financial counselling, case work, advocacy or community education.
The Helpline Service is available from Monday to Thursdays between the hours of 9.30am and 8pm and Fridays 9.30am and 4.30pm (except Public Holidays). To access information, support, or referrals, call the Helpline on the number provided.
COVID-19: Some services may have changed to phone based service.
Financial counselling is a free, independent and confidential service offering support, information and advocacy to anyone experiencing financial hardship.
A Financial Counsellor will look at your overall financial situation and provide you with your options. They can advocate and negotiate on your behalf if needed.
A Financial Counsellor cannot provide investment advice, financial planning, or monetary assistance.
Financial counselling is offered by a range of service providers throughout South Australia via an appointment based service. See locations below for providers in your area.
Alternatively, you can call the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007 for telephone financial counselling or a referral to a financial counsellor in your area.
The Helpline Service is available from Monday to Thursday between the hours of 9.30 am - 8 pm and Fridays 9.30am - 4.30pm (closed public holidays).
Issues a Financial Counsellor can assist with include:
- Financial rights and responsibilities
- Budgeting and money management
- Applications for hardship
- Debts and debt recovery processes
- Concessions and related entitlements
- Referrals to complementary services
- Insolvency and bankruptcy options
Several organisations in South Australia operate to assist refugees and migrants and can extend to International students and temporary visa holders, providing help in learning new financial systems and assisting with basic needs and support such as food through an Emergency Relief service.
These organisations have access to Financial Counselling and caseworkers to help individuals negotiate with utility companies, government departments. It is expected that these organisation will also refer to other community services as appropriate.
The Australian Refugee Association and the Australian Migrant Resource Centres are located in Adelaide and across many parts of South Australia.
International students can approach financial counselling services within the SA Universities provided by student services to access help.
Please refer to each location for more information about services offered.
If you need help lodging your tax return, you may be eligible for the Tax Help program. Tax Help is a network of ATO-trained community volunteers who provide a free and confidential service to help people lodge their tax returns online.
Tax Help is available from July to October each year with volunteers delivering this service over the phone, online and face to face from selected Tax Help centres.
You may be eligible for Tax Help if your income is around $60,000 or less. Other eligibility criteria applies.
For further information on eligibility, what volunteers can help you with and how to make an appointment, please visit the website.
The program supports South Australian small business owners and sole traders to rebuild and recover their business/service from the impact of Covid 19.
To access the services below the business/service must have a maximum of $80,000 profit per annum. This program provides:
- Up to three hours of personalised business coaching
- A tailored roadmap recovery plan
- Small grants of up to $1500 to support business goals
- Referrals to access other financial wellbeing services and personal supports
For more information visit the website or call the number below
The Small Business Recovery Program is a partnership between SA's Department of Human Services and Good Shepherd Australia New Zealand.
Centrelink payments and services are available for seniors, job seekers, students and trainees, families, carers, parents, people with disability, First National People and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
Eligibility criteria differs for each payment.
For more information and a list of Centrelink payments and services, visit the website below.
The Small Business Debt Helpline is a free, confidential and independent service supporting Australian small business owners and sole traders experiencing financial difficulty.
Financial Counsellors at the Small Business Debt Helpline have knowledge about small business practice.
This service can help with :
- understanding business and personal debts, and personal guarantees and their implications
- grants that you may be able to access and training for small business owners
- crisis relief measures for bushfires and COVID-19
- options for payment arrangements with the Australian Tax Office (ATO), creditors, suppliers and service providers
- information about closing your business, including bankruptcy and insolvency
- where you can access dispute resolution services
- emotional support.
For more information, visit the website or call the Helpline on the number below.
The [Australian Red Cross](https://www.redcross.org.au/news-and-media/news/help-for-migrants-in-transition) are providing a small one-off emergency relief payment for people on temporary visas to meet urgent financial needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Available to people in Australia with urgent needs who:
- are not Australian citizens or permanent residents; and
- have a need such as a utility bill or medical expenses, and are unable to meet that need.
To apply you will need evidence of your current or most recent visa and evidence of financial hardship.
Applications are made online at their [website](https://www.redcross.org.au/news-and-media/news/help-for-migrants-in-transition).