Welfare benefits header showing stacks of copper coins

Benefits and Credits

How we can help

Howells has a long and proud background of social justice, protecting and exercising the rights of the unemployed, the disabled, those on low incomes or those who can no longer work due to illness or injury.

We can assist with:

  • All benefits related issues arising from Jobcentre Plus, The Tax Credits Office and the Local Authority
  • Advising you on appeals against benefit decisions, including taking appeals to tribunal
  • Making backdated claims for underpayment of benefits
  • Challenging claims of benefit overpayments
  • Assisting with the review of Social Fund decisions


Our fixed fee services are designed to make Benefits and Credits advice accessible and affordable. At a time when you need help the most, we’re here to provide it.

In particular, if you need assistance with challenging a decision made by the DWP, HMRC or Local Authority, or are looking to take a case to Tribunal then please do get in touch.

Click here to view Benefits and Credits fixed fee services.

2 steps to contacting Howells:

Step 1

Call our New Enquiry Team on 0114 249 66 66 or email [email protected] for an initial chat about your situation.

Step 2

We’ll listen carefully to you, clarify what you’re trying to achieve, and then explain if and how we can help you. We will take some initial information and liaise with a legal professional regarding your case. If it looks like we can help, we will book you in for a consultation with a legal professional.

The Benefits and Credits team

Here at Howells we are dedicated to helping you with your matter by providing professional advice to make sure that you receive the correct Benefits and Credits. We have experience of every stage of the process and are here to guide you through each of these stages.

Marie Busfield
Chartered Legal Executive
0114 249 6627

Common Questions

Q.When should you get in touch with the Benefits and Credits team?

A.You should contact the Benefits and Credits team if you are not sure what you are entitled to and need help to claim, or if you have received a decision that you disagree with.

Q.Is there any free legal advice available for Benefits and Credits?

A.Provided that the eligibility requirements are met there is some funding available to help with applications to the Upper Tribunal only. This stage can only be reached if a First Tier Tribunal has heard your appeal, you have requested the statement of reasons from the First Tier Tribunal and you have applied to the First Tier Tribunal for permission to appeal against their decision. Only once you have received the decision back from your permission to appeal application is legal help funding potentially available.

Q.Can you attend a First Tier Tribunal hearing with me?

A.Yes we can attend a hearing with you. However the Tribunal will ask you the questions directly and not through a representative. We are only permitted at the Tribunal Judges discretion to make a short opening statement at the start of the hearing and provide any additional information at the end of the hearing. We can however assist you with the papers during the hearing and take notes.

Q.Can I recover my costs back from the benefit agency if I win my appeal?

A.Unfortunately there is no provision for you to be awarded your legal fees if you are successful in your appeal. However dependant on the type of appeal you may secure a significant backdated amount of benefit. In addition to this if you feel that you have suffered maladministration by the benefit agency you can make a complaint and you may be awarded compensation if the benefit agency agree with your complaint.