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Consultant Welfare Benefits Adviser

Paddock Wood Community Advice Centre


Remuneration: £20/hr on a self-employed basis.

Hours: To be negotiated, but approximately 5-20 hours/week, depending on consultant availability and client demand. 

At least 5 hours per week to be undertaken within PWCAC’s opening hours of Monday to Friday, 9:30am - 1:30pm.

Duration: Long term

Location: Preferably in person at 94 Commercial Road, Paddock Wood, TN12 6DP, but some remote working may be negotiable.

Reporting to: Senior Manager, Paddock Wood Community Advice Centre

Main purpose and scope of the role: to provide specialist welfare benefits advice to clients.


About Us

Paddock Wood Community Advice Centre is a small, vibrant, independent charity offering free, confidential and impartial advice to people living in and around Paddock Wood. We believe face to face is the most effective medium for advice and the one which is especially important to vulnerable people. We also offer advice via email and phone/video calls.  
All our advisers are trained volunteers.  We offer advice on a wide range of issues including welfare benefits, consumer matters, debt and money, employment, family and housing.  In addition, our specialist caseworkers represent clients at first-tier tribunal to challenge Department of Work and Pensions’ decisions. 
We aim to ensure that our clients leave our offices feeling empowered and aware of all options available to them. We hold the Advice Quality Standard, a national quality mark for organisations providing free, independent advice to members of the public. 

About the role

This is a highly flexible role, providing specialist welfare benefits advice to clients including:

  • Offering referenced information and detailed advice on benefit entitlement, including accurate what-if scenarios.

  • Providing information on relevant law, welfare benefit guidance and government practice.

  • Advising on challenging decisions, providing details of regulations, case law and good practice.

  • Providing written summaries of the advice given or suggested wording for communications such as letters or appeal submissions.

  • Case-work support for more complex queries, including managing the process and following-up.

  • Recording casework on AdvicePro in compliance with PWCAC’s policies and procedures.

  • Supporting volunteers in their learning about the welfare benefits system.



Person Specification


Values and Personal Attributes

  • A demonstrable commitment to the values of PWCAC

  • Positive work ethic: professional, enthusiastic, dependable, conscientious

  • Proactive approach to personal development and the updating of skills and knowledge



  • GCSE Grade A-C in English and Maths (or equivalent)

  • A relevant degree or other professional qualification (desirable, not essential)


Skills and Knowledge

  • Knowledge of the welfare benefits system including mandatory reconsideration and social security tribunal rules

  • Ability to research, analyse and interpret complex information, and the ability to relay that information clearly to others verbally and in writing

  • Ability to undertake benefit and tax credit calculations

  • Ability to share knowledge, mentor and support others; ability to give and receive feedback objectively and sensitively

  • Ability to take a lead role in areas or work, allocated according to PWCAC priorities and experience within the advice team

  • Ability to use Microsoft Office 365 products, and other office systems for customer relationship and case management and monitoring purposes


At least two year’s Welfare Benefits experience

Tribunal representation experience and knowledge of the application for appeals to Upper Tribunal (desirable not essential)


Other Requirements

Flexible approach and willingness to work as part of a small team

Right to work in the UK

Diversity and Inclusion

Our service is open to all members of our community without discrimination and we likewise recognise the importance of diversity in our staff and volunteer body, so we encourage and welcome applications from candidates from all backgrounds, including those with lived experience of the issues which we advise upon.

If you need us to adapt our application process to accommodate your needs, please let us know.  We will also consider any reasonable adjustment requests.

How to apply

Please send your CV and a letter explaining why you are suited to the role to Katie Hargreaves at  Please note that part of the assessment process will include spending a morning at the Advice Centre in a voluntary capacity.

If you would like to discuss the opportunity or learn more about us in advance of applying, we would be very happy to hear from you and you would be welcome to visit us in Paddock Wood during opening hours.  Please email or call 01892 838619.

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