Many people who are having problems with gambling have financial troubles. Their troubles can prompt them to gamble more to try to win back their losses or can lead to feelings of hopelessness leading to more gambling.
People affected by someone else's gambling may also find themselves under considerable financial stress.
Financial counsellors can help by providing information and support, advice about government concessions and entitlements, and information about where to get food vouchers and other forms of assistance.
The counsellors at Gambler's Help are fully qualified and have significant experience.
You can see a Gambler's Help financial counsellor with or without also seeing a therapeutic counsellor.
They can help you:
- negotiate formal debt agreements and talk to creditors
- manage any debts occurring in your name, and help you to pay your bills
- legally protect your joint assets, such as your house
- put measures in place so you are not held responsible for any further debt incurred by a partner or family member with a gambling problem
- check whether you are entitled to any concessions and entitlements and provide information on where to obtain food vouchers and other types of assistance
- access legal assistance
- separate your finances to reduce risk, for example, to help you to:
- arrange separate bank accounts
- cancel joint credit cards
- pay bills automatically out of an account that only a non-gambler has access to
- access therapeutic gambling counselling if and when you want it.
Financial counsellors cannot:
- make any decisions on your behalf
- organise a debt consolidation loan
- provide investment or non-financial advice.
Victorians with gambling problems may be eligible for financial help under the Recovery Assistance Program. Under this program, gamblers who are in financial crisis may be eligible for help with essential living needs.
This financial assistance is only available:
- in a way that does not facilitate or subsidise gambling behaviour
- following an assessment that the person with a gambling issue and their family are in genuine need
- for essential living needs
- to support individuals and families to recover from the impact of problem gambling
- to registered Gambler's Help clients.
To see someone about financial counselling, call Gambler's Help FREECALL 1800 858 858 or find your local Gambler's Help service here.
For more information, tips and tools to help you manage your finances, see: