Introduction to Debt

This is a two-part online course, usually taking place on two consecutive mornings (2 x 3 hour parts). It is essential to attend both parts of the course.



Part 1 course outline:
3 hours on Day 1, including registration, course presentation & practice, break and time for questions

  • Overview of the debt advice process


  • How to maximise income/consider acceptable expenditure



This part of the course gives an overview of the different stages of dealing with people in debt, including identifying debt triggers. It considers the different types of credit available and the legal framework behind them. It examines the difference between priority and non-priority debt and making initial contact with creditors. It also considers how to effectively maximise income and consider acceptable expenditure levels in a financial statement.


By the end of Part 1, participants will:

  • Understand the stages of effective debt management;

  • Be able to identify different types of credit;

  • Know the difference between priority and non-priority debt;

  • Be aware of how to make effective contact with creditors and how the Breathing Space scheme operates;

  • Be able to maximise income for their client; 

  • Understand how the Standard Financial Statement operates and who can use it;

  • Be aware of appropriate levels of expenditure when completing financial statements.



Part 2 course outline:

3 hours on Day 2, including registration, course presentation, break and time for questions

  • Completing the financial statement 


  • Negotiating with creditors


This part of the course looks at how to complete a financial statement and calculate accurate pro-rata offers to creditors. It also considers a range of common problems that may be encountered and how to effectively deal with these.

By the end of Part 2, participants will:

  • Know how to prepare a financial statement;

  • Be able to calculate pro-rata offers to creditors;

  • Understand how to deal with common problems with creditors;

  • Know what national resources (including face-to-face, telephone and online) are available to help clients deal with debt and when it is appropriate to refer to them

Methods of delivery
This course is delivered online live with a BTC trainer. It is a practical course delivered using a combination of trainer presentation, exercises and case studies, group discussion and games. Participants will be provided with e-learning supporting material including PowerPoint slide handouts, a comprehensive training pack pdf and additional resources. There is a 20-30 minute break halfway through each part of the course.


Intended audience
This course is for staff who work with people who claim or could be claiming welfare benefits.


Certificates & post course support
Participants booking through our website will receive an e-certificate for completing both Parts 1 & 2 (2 x half days / 6 hours) of this course. This also guarantees eligibility to access our free 12 months post-course advice service. If you don't receive your certificate, please look in your spam folder first!

Course instructions

In the week before the course, you will receive an email with Zoom link(s) to the course and a Dropbox link to access the pack/slides which are in pdf format. You will need to download (or print) the pack (and slides, if you wish) before each part of the course.

You will need basic IT skills, a good wifi connection and a suitable computer/laptop to access both the Zoom session and the pack throughout. You may wish to use a separate device for the pack (or split your screen) if you cannot or do not wish to print.