Financial counselling is a free and confidential service offered by community organisations, community legal centres and some government agencies.
Financial counsellors are skilled professionals. They will listen to your problems and help you with things like:
- bills or fines you're struggling to pay
- being harassed by debt collectors
- gas, electricity or phone disconnection
- being evicted from your house
- car accidents with no insurance
- tax debts
Financial counsellors do not offer legal advice. If you’re facing legal action, get free legal advice straight away.
Contact a financial counsellor
If you feel overwhelmed by debt, contact a financial counsellor as soon as possible. If you get help early, you will have many more options.
National Debt Helpline — 1800 007 007
The free National Debt Helpline is open from 9.30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
When you call, you'll be transferred to the service in your state. Meet some of the financial counsellors you might speak to.
Small Business Support Line
If your small business is struggling because of COVID-19 or natural disasters, call the Small Business Support Line on 1800 413 828.
Farmers or rural and regional businesses
Farmers and other rural businesses struggling due to drought or other hardship can talk to a rural financial counsellor. The government is funding financial counselling for small regional businesses affected by COVID-19.
Find a financial counsellor near you
What financial counsellors do
Financial counsellors guide you through your options. They can:
- suggest ways to improve your financial situation
- see if you're eligible for government concessions or support
- talk to your creditors about repayment arrangements
- help you apply for a hardship variation
- explain the risks of bankruptcy and debt agreements and talk through the alternatives
- refer you to other services, such as a gambling helpline, family support or legal aid
Read more about what financial counsellors do.
Never pay for financial counselling. Businesses that charge fees for this are debt consolidation and refinancing companies.