Annual report

We have published our annual report online. In the report, you can find lots of information about our activities during the year, about the work we do and about our impact in Coventry.

Further information, including our financial accounts, can also be accessed via the annual report section of our website.

Annual General Meeting

We would like to give notice that our annual general meeting is taking place on Friday 11th October 2019 at Coventry (Methodist) Central Hall, Lower Hall, Warwick Lane, Coventry, CV1 2HA.

Refreshments will be available from 12:00 pm and the meeting will start at 12.15 pm, followed by a buffet lunch.

If you would like to attend, please let us know by Thursday 3rd October 2019.  You can either telephone 024 7652 1100 or email info@covadvice.org.uk.

Full details can be found on our AGM page.

Benefit appeals and people charging for advice

We have issued the following press release today, alongside colleagues from Coventry Citizens Advice and Central England Law Centre, in response to recent enquiries from local residents who are being charged for benefits advice by other individuals and organisations in the city.

Welfare reform has meant changes for many people claiming benefits. The welfare benefit system is complicated. It’s easy for both claimants and officials to make mistakes that lead to serious problems and a loss of money.

Advice Services in Coventry can provide FREE advice to help with these problems.

Kate Algate, Chief Executive of Coventry Citizens Advice said “If your benefits have stopped or they’ve been reduced and you think the decision is unfair then get in touch. We can help you work out if you can appeal that decision and we can help you submit the appeal”

Appeals are a two-stage process. The first stage is to submit a request for a ‘mandatory reconsideration’. If that’s unsuccessful then there is an opportunity to appeal to a tribunal.

Alan Markey, Director of Coventry Independent Advice Service, said “We run services in your local community. We can also help you submit appeals. We’re aware that there are people charging for this help. The services of all Advice Services Coventry partners are FREE.”

Both organisations have quality-marked services and their help is free. If you need to make a second appeal to a tribunal, they will refer you to Central England Law Centre, who provide free representation at the tribunal.

Sue Bent, Chief Executive of Central England Law Centre, said “We know that people worry about going to a tribunal. We’ll work with you to present your evidence and we’ll be there with you at the tribunal. This year, we have been successful in 90% of appeals for Personal Independence Payment, 96% of appeals for Employment Support Allowance and Universal Credit and 100% of appeals for Disability Living Allowance.”

In 12 months over £3.2 million in backdated welfare benefits and weekly benefits has been paid to people in Coventry that we helped through the appeals system.”

Advice in Spon End

Please note that our drop-in advice service in Spon End, based at Spon Gate Primary School, will be closed during the school summer holidays.

The last session before the holidays will be on Friday 19th July. The service will then reopen as normal on Friday 13th September.

Please be assured that we have plenty of other advice sessions available over the summer! Details of all our other services can be found on our ‘get advice’ page.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused.