If you have a physical disability, learning disability or mental health condition, you can get extra support when applying for a benefit from Social Security Scotland.
The support you'll get will be from a person known as an advocate.
What an advocate does
An advocate will listen to you and try to understand your point of view and what you want to happen.
They can help you to:
- apply for a benefit
- speak up and make sure your views are understood
- be fully involved and able to make decisions
- ask questions and get the information you need
- understand your rights relating to Social Security Scotland benefits
- express your rights, views, and wishes including what you want to achieve
They will not:
- give you advice
- make decisions for you
- speak for you if you're able to speak for yourself, unless you ask them to
- give their own views or opinions
An advocate cannot be a friend or family member.
If you need an advocate, you should contact Social Security Scotland. They'll be able to help you find one.
You can ask for help from an advocate at any point before, during or after applying for Social Security Scotland benefits.
If you already have someone helping you
You cannot get the help of an advocate if you already have any of these people helping you:
- Power of Attorney
- third party representative
- personal acting body
- corporate acting body