Commonwealth Financial Counselling (CFC)

Commonwealth Financial Counselling services are delivered by community and local government organisations and help people in personal financial difficulty to address their financial problems and make informed choices. Circumstances that can lead to personal financial difficulty include unemployment, sickness, credit over-commitment and family breakdown.

This is an activity under the Australian Government’s Financial Management Program (FMP).

Commonwealth Financial Counselling services are voluntary, free and confidential, and can be accessed through:

  • face-to-face meetings
  • the national telephone service on 1800 007 007*

*Please note that calls to 1800 007 007 from public phones/mobile phones may be timed and charged at a higher rate.

How can Commonwealth Financial Counselling help?

Delivered by qualified financial counsellors, Commonwealth Financial Counselling services may include:

  • direct casework (for example, advice and information)
  • advocacy and/or negotiation
  • referral
  • community education.

General financial counselling

Financial counsellors can assist people who are experiencing personal financial difficulties in the following ways:

  • negotiate with creditors – for example, if you are having difficulty maintaining your loan, mortgage or credit card repayments
  • advocate – a financial counsellor can assist with communicating with government or non-government organisations
  • explain what options are available when you are not able to pay bills
  • explain the debt recovery process – if you have received a letter of demand, a summons, a warrant of execution or a judgment summons and are not sure what to do next
  • develop a budgeting plan – if you are having difficulties making ends meet, a financial counsellor can help develop a budgeting plan to suit your circumstances, and help gain financial management skills to enable you to take control of your finances
  • provide information on bankruptcy and help explore various options
  • refer you to other support services if you require.

Commonwealth Financial Counsellors do not provide:

  • financial planning advice
  • finance lending
  • endorsement of specific financial products or services
  • business advice
  • legal advice

To find a financial counsellor delivering the initiative in your area please visit the Commonwealth Financial Counselling directory.

Specialised financial counselling

There are also financial counsellors who specialise in supporting individuals as well as friends, family and employers of people who are affected by problem gambling.

The 50 new financial counselling positions across Australia assist problem gamblers and their families get back on their feet.

The initiative is being delivered through the Government’s Commonwealth Financial Counselling activity, which is part of the Financial Management Program.

To find a financial counsellor delivering the initiative in your area please visit the Commonwealth Financial Counselling directory

Telephone Financial Counselling

The national 1800 007 007 financial counselling helpline provides access to free financial counselling information across Australia. It aims to help vulnerable individuals and families across a range of income and financial literacy levels to manage their money, overcome financial adversity, participate in their communities and plan for the medium to long term.

A booking and referral service is available through the national 1800 007 007* service to provide details of face-to-face financial counselling services in your local area.

*Please note that calls to 1800 007 007 from public phones/mobile phones may be timed and charged at a higher rate.

More information

More information on financial counselling services is available on the CFC factsheet or through calling the national telephone financial counselling helpline on 1800 007 007*.

*Please note that calls to 1800 007 007 from public phones/mobile phones may be timed and charged at a higher rate.

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