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Help with money if you're affected by imprisonment

If someone you know is facing imprisonment or is already in prison, it could affect your finances. Find out what you can do to manage any money worries.

You and your family

Get advice and support

Prison can have a significant effect on family and friends of prisoners, but there's help, advice and support available.

Families – Scottish Prison Service
Read our guide on support for families and friends of prisoners

'Throughcare' is the name given to services for prisoners and their families that cover before, during and after imprisonment.

Check what's available in your local area

Get support and access a range of services, including throughcare providers, youth services and mentoring.

Services and support – SACRO

Families Outside is an independent charity offering support through an information helpline, visitors' centre at HMP Addiewel and direct family support.

Services and support – Families Outside

Circle is a Scottish charity that helps families affected by parental imprisonment.

Services – Circle

Looking after your money

Claim benefits

Your benefits might stop or change if your family member goes to prison.

Benefits and prison – GOV.UK

Manage your debts

If you're affected by imprisonment, debt can build up or existing debts can get worse if you don't take steps to manage your finances. You'll need to tell landlords, service providers (like your gas or electricity provider) and lenders of your situation.

Look at what practical arrangements you'll need to make or get help with debt.

Help with debt – Citizens Advice Scotland

Find out what you can do if you're struggling to manage financial commitments.

Options for clearing your debts – Money Advice Service

Get help with prison visits

Find out how you can get help with prison visit costs.

Get help with the cost of prison visits – GOV.UK

Find out about visiting prison including arranging visits, travel expenses and other ways of keeping in contact.

Information for prisoners and their families and friends – Citizens Advice Scotland

Read information about prison visits from Families Outside, a charity that supports the families of people affected by imprisonment.

Information sheets for families affected by imprisonment

Keeping your home

Deal with rent arrears

If your financial situation changes because a family member is in prison, you could be eligible for help with housing costs.

Find out what to do if you can't pay your rent or you already owe rent – including what help you can get to pay.

Read our guide on dealing with rent arrears.

If you're on a low income, you may be entitled to Housing Benefit from your local council. This helps to pay your rent.

Claim housing benefit from your local council

Families Outside can offer housing advice through an information helpline, visitors' centre at HMP Addiewel and direct family support.

Services and support – Families Outside

Deal with mortgage arrears

Learn what support is available if you're having mortgage difficulties and you're worried you might lose your home.

Read our guide for home owners with mortgage difficulties.

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