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  • FIRST POST
    • Former MSE Wendy
    • By Former MSE Wendy 31st May 12, 12:05 PM
    • 868Posts
    • 1,782Thanks
    Former MSE Wendy
    PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING: Money Saving Expert / CAB pilot service
    • #1
    • 31st May 12, 12:05 PM
    PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING: Money Saving Expert / CAB pilot service 31st May 12 at 12:05 PM
    Welcome to the Citizens Advice Bureau discussion board which aims to help people get started on selected topics.

    Post your queries in the relevant board below and a Citizens Advice representative will aim to answer your question within 2 working days.

    If you’re already receiving support and advice from your local CAB, then please continue your discussion with them rather than post on this board.

    Please be aware, this type of forum collaboration is new for MSE so it’s currently a trial. We hope it is well used, but as we’ll all be finding our feet, please be patient as it grows.

    Citzens Advice has several bureau advisers on this board, based around England & Wales, initially answering questions on four different topics:

    · dealing with debts and debt disputes – see board
    · housing benefit – see board
    · tax credits & benefits for people in work or looking for work – see board
    · your basic rights at work and redundancy problems – see board

    You’ll recognise a CAB adviser as their username will be displayed in bold purple, eg CAB Malvern Hills representative, and have a special representative signature.

    If you have a question about other topics or issues, please see if the Citizens Advice self-help website has the information you need Adviceguide. If you need more help, please contact your local bureau. You can get their details from the CAB directory. Comments on CAB services are always welcome, so please let it know what you think using its Feedback form.

    As usual, please report any inappropriate/illegal posts by clicking the Report button in the bottom right corner and don’t reply. The CAB advisers aren’t part of the MSE Forum Team and aren’t there to deal with this so please don’t contact them. This is for their sanity as much as ours!

    This board’s for help, not judgement so it’s not the place for discussion about benefits political policy.
    Last edited by Former MSE Wendy; 28-11-2012 at 4:37 PM.
Page 3
    • woodbine
    • By woodbine 18th Jun 12, 9:47 PM
    • 18,345 Posts
    • 24,708 Thanks
    woodbine
    sadly i see this as having the same problems that the "disability and dosh"board has,from the start it just diluted the advice that was always given on the benefits board,i really dont see the advantage of this seperate board as has already been pointed out most people want almost instant answers,and even when provided alot of "new"one off posters dont hang around long
    nice try but cant see what it adds to mse
    • tyllwyd
    • By tyllwyd 19th Jun 12, 10:15 AM
    • 5,366 Posts
    • 4,360 Thanks
    tyllwyd
    I dont understand why this is a sub board of the pure money board? If it was a board in its own right, then it could have sub boards that relate to the areas covered, and a clear message displayed that questions on other topics should be posted elsewhere.

    TBH without criticising the advisers, I'm not sure this fits with MSE - the advantage of posting a question here is that you get responses with different people's opinions and personal experience -official replies come across as a bit careful and corporate, which takes away from the feeling of discussing and chatting about the subject with a mix of people.
    • Former MSE Wendy
    • By Former MSE Wendy 19th Jun 12, 7:22 PM
    • 868 Posts
    • 1,782 Thanks
    Former MSE Wendy
    Thanks for all your feedback on the launch of the CAB board folks. We’ve been seeing how it goes for a few days and have taken your comments on board.

    There have been a few questions about posts from non CAB reps. We want regular forum members to reply to questions but have now highlighted CAB representative posts so their official reply stands out.

    On random posts, if you feel someone’s question would be better suited on one of the other boards, please do suggest they move/repost their question. We are likely to be moving some of the questions (eg, on consumer rights) but many will stay. This is a way for CAB to see the types of issues that are coming up and they may amend their ‘sticky’ subjects accordingly.

    Over time we expect questions to end up in the correct place. This may take a little time but as users come to the board and see how it works they will know where to post.

    Please keep letting us know how it’s going and we’ll tweak things where we can.

    Wendy
    • jetplane
    • By jetplane 20th Jun 12, 9:29 PM
    • 1,531 Posts
    • 3,579 Thanks
    jetplane
    For a CAB adviser to give accurate information and/or advice they need to ask many questions to establish the facts otherwise the advice is flawed. The CAB also have a strict confidentiality policy. I do not see how this can be achieved on a public forum.

    I think that allowing anyone to post confuses the issue and is no more accurate than any of the other forums. Also some bureaux already provide an email service where an adviser will contact you within 48 hours.

    If there is to be a CAB board it should be locked to those CAB advisers who are part of the pilot. Others could view it similar to a question and answer board.
    The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed. Steve Biko
    • rogerblack
    • By rogerblack 21st Jun 12, 8:50 PM
    • 9,278 Posts
    • 9,443 Thanks
    rogerblack
    I echo the other concerns about dilution.
    It seems questionable to have a new board, which is basically linking to four threads which will be replied to.

    For one thing - long threads with multiple peoples problems are essentially impossible to keep straight, and are confusing.

    The alternative of having 'debt' subforums to the CAB board, duplicating existing forums seems similarly questionable.

    My preferred solution would be for the CAB advisers to simply respond in normal forums, and their contributions would be flagged, and maybe make the thread go bright purple and smell of apricots or something.

    If it is desired to differentiate - one solution would be:

    If a CAB advisor posts in one of the four topic areas on the main forums, then it gets automatically copied to the appropriate CAB subforum board (one for each topic) - replies are visible in both places.

    Users can also ask questions directly on those CAB subforum - debt/... boards.
    • enabledebra
    • By enabledebra 21st Jun 12, 10:47 PM
    • 7,395 Posts
    • 10,909 Thanks
    enabledebra
    I poste this on another thread but wanted to raise the issue here also:

    I'd also make an educated guess that a good few replies might possibly be cut and pasted from the CAB 'Advisernet' info database used by CAB advisers. In this day and age I'd be very happy to see that database made public rather than perpetuating a client/adviser power differential. That's why I always try to link to public info when I post, whether the info is intended for use by 'experts' or not.
  • CAB National Representative
    Training to provide online-only advice services
    Just a suggestion, but have CAB thought of taking on and training volunteers to do online-only advice. I had a look into volunteering for my local one but its daytime only hours that are difficult to fit around working. I, and perhaps other people might be interested in doing some evening or weekend volunteer work, which would also help CAB give more regular replies to the questions here.
    Originally posted by mel12
    Hi mel12,

    Firstly, my apologies for not posting a response to this sooner.

    Thank you for your suggestion. Yes, we have thought about taking on and training volunteers to provide online services, However, we have to think about this carefully in terms of quality of service, how the staff will be supervised, the equipment they might need, and other costs. So, each bureau decides what is best for them and their community, and whether they have all the resources needed to set up this way of working.

    We do have quite a few bureaux running email advice services, and also some who operate video-linking services too. And, of course, we’re running this pilot service in the MSE Forum.

    I hope this helps, and thank you again for your idea.

    Official CAB Representative
    I am an official representative of CAB. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to questions on the CAB Board. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. If you believe I’ve broken any rules please report my post to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com as usual"
    • fermi
    • By fermi 19th Jul 12, 2:38 PM
    • 39,322 Posts
    • 47,141 Thanks
    fermi
    a few years ago i made a mistake while banking online. i send the five hundred pounds to the wrong account number because i typed in the 16 digit card number instead of the account number, i have tried to claim it back from the bank and the said they coudnt help. is there anything i can do to claim the money back
    Originally posted by sparker87
    This thread isn't really for that sort of question for the CAB reps. Should instead be in a separate thread on it's own, or on one of the other main stickied ones.

    I'll move you post into it's own thread.

    Here ---> http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=4080431
    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Bankruptcy, Credit Cards and Loans boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Board guides are not moderators. If you spot an inappropriate or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com

    Free/impartial debt advice: National Debtline | StepChange Debt Charity | Find your local CAB

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    • BobQ
    • By BobQ 9th Aug 12, 12:21 AM
    • 9,824 Posts
    • 12,757 Thanks
    BobQ
    I am increasingly disappointed with this "experiment". Were it being done in any commercial environment I would call it a "half baked experiment".

    People with real and urgent concerns are posting here believing that will get a response from the CAB even though you have now stated that these will only happen on specified subjects. This means that those with issues in the non-included areas are basically being ignored by CAB reps. I note bland assurances that things will settle down eventually, but even so I think the rather cavalier attitude being adopted to the whole idea reflects very badly on MSE and CAB.

    As an example consider http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=55038011&posted=1#post55038011
    Last edited by BobQ; 09-08-2012 at 12:27 AM.
    Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are incapable of forming such opinions.
    • BobQ
    • By BobQ 10th Aug 12, 12:23 AM
    • 9,824 Posts
    • 12,757 Thanks
    BobQ
    I am increasingly disappointed with this "experiment". Were it being done in any commercial environment I would call it a "half baked experiment".

    People with real and urgent concerns are posting here believing that will get a response from the CAB even though you have now stated that these will only happen on specified subjects. This means that those with issues in the non-included areas are basically being ignored by CAB reps. I note bland assurances that things will settle down eventually, but even so I think the rather cavalier attitude being adopted to the whole idea reflects very badly on MSE and CAB.

    As an example consider http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=55038011&posted=1#post55038011
    Originally posted by BobQ
    Further to the above, what is the point of posting threads on the CAB Board even if they are about the defined subjects if they are not to be considered? Surely the easiest thing to do is only have the Stickys where the CAB is responding? Sorry to seem critical but it creates confusion to allow posts that are not to be addressed.
    Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are incapable of forming such opinions.
    • tyllwyd
    • By tyllwyd 13th Aug 12, 7:38 AM
    • 5,366 Posts
    • 4,360 Thanks
    tyllwyd
    I am starting to avoid looking at this board because it takes too long to get in - I waited well over 30 seconds this morning. I know that MSE is always slow, but this board is ridiculous! Is it deliberate to put people off so that only the most determined get here?
    • John_Pierpoint
    • By John_Pierpoint 13th Aug 12, 11:05 AM
    • 8,231 Posts
    • 7,383 Thanks
    John_Pierpoint
    It is only one extra click.

    I think the rule should be:
    Let the CAB representative issue the official detailed explanation & advice and only then let us "amateurs" point out draw-backs and suggest additional streetwise points.
    • tyllwyd
    • By tyllwyd 13th Aug 12, 12:00 PM
    • 5,366 Posts
    • 4,360 Thanks
    tyllwyd
    It is only one extra click.
    ...
    Originally posted by John_Pierpoint
    Do you mean the message that you need to click on to get through to the board? I've only seen that once so I assume that there is a cookie for that now. Having moaned this morning, I take it back to some extent beause MSE including this board is working OK for me now, but on days when pages are slow to load, the CAB board is always the worst.
    • John_Pierpoint
    • By John_Pierpoint 13th Aug 12, 1:14 PM
    • 8,231 Posts
    • 7,383 Thanks
    John_Pierpoint
    Perhaps it depends on one's rout into the thread, as I've not had to click it this time, but must have clicked it half a dozen times last week using my Firefox browser. Perhaps the "all cookies cleared" message only applies when one positively signs out rather than allow the session to time out?

    & it is two clicks - one to tick the box and one to continue
    Last edited by John_Pierpoint; 14-08-2012 at 4:08 AM.
    • enabledebra
    • By enabledebra 14th Aug 12, 1:54 AM
    • 7,395 Posts
    • 10,909 Thanks
    enabledebra
    Apologies if I have missed some info but this board is raising a lot of questions for me.

    Ignoring the straight practicalities of the format, where’s the quality assurance? Given that the specific threads are ‘official’ (and this is becoming more overtly stated by MSE) there is an accompanying expectation that posters can reasonably rely on (and act on) responses. So where’s the complaints procedure or published quality standards that usually underpin the adviser/client relationship? What happens if bad advice is acted upon? I assume the various CABx indemnity insurance covers this? Or is this forum an unofficial ‘official ‘ source of advice? I haven’t seen any robust disclaimers so I’m assuming posters can expect the same protection afforded by visiting a CAB. I'm really not trying to be pedantic - it's a fundamental issue.
    • enabledebra
    • By enabledebra 14th Aug 12, 2:43 AM
    • 7,395 Posts
    • 10,909 Thanks
    enabledebra
    Whilst looking for info on my queries above I found a feedback form:

    "Feedback to Citizens Advice

    We are unable to answer advice related queries via this website. If you need advice or details of your local Citizens Advice Bureau please see Get advice."

    I think the messages this board is giving are mixed to say the least. Clarity would be very welcome, and I would say advisable, - I mean advisable 'unofficially' of course : )
    • wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    • By wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver 15th Aug 12, 5:20 PM
    • 5,607 Posts
    • 10,481 Thanks
    wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    Maybe CAB can see our Welfare Rights and Consumer Rights awareness??!! a good thing IMHO.
    From where I see it MSE has a long way to go but there are some good Posters and Posts on the Board.
    #TY[/B] Would be Qaulity MSE Challenge Queen.
    [B]Reading whatever books I want to the rescue!:beer[/B
    WannabeBarrister, WannabeWife, Wannabe Campaign Girl Wannabe MSE Girl #wannnabeALLmyFamilygirl
    #notbackyetIamfightingfortherighttobeMSEandFREE
    • wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    • By wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver 15th Aug 12, 5:22 PM
    • 5,607 Posts
    • 10,481 Thanks
    wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    I think if CAB and MSE go into it gently rather than all guns blazing it is better for the side rather than a bull in a china shop. I think a gradual approach is best.
    There is plenty of discussion on Benefits threads to help people ( I would not use them but use Benefits and Work and Guardian first before consulting this and other Boards ie Urban 75 who has a great Welfare emphasis).
    So for me this is supplement,only CAB would be the main Course?
    #TY[/B] Would be Qaulity MSE Challenge Queen.
    [B]Reading whatever books I want to the rescue!:beer[/B
    WannabeBarrister, WannabeWife, Wannabe Campaign Girl Wannabe MSE Girl #wannnabeALLmyFamilygirl
    #notbackyetIamfightingfortherighttobeMSEandFREE
    • wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    • By wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver 15th Aug 12, 5:25 PM
    • 5,607 Posts
    • 10,481 Thanks
    wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    I hope CAB can operate all sorts of Services Video SKYPE? MSN etc plus email TV? radio as we are in the 21st century not 19th.
    But gently does it.
    Evolution not revolution to get to know the forum. I for one hope this experiment succeeds because it is well overdue making MSE a terrible place to get Benefits help rather than it's amazing excellence, fantasticness, amazingness etc when push comes to the shity shove.
    #TY[/B] Would be Qaulity MSE Challenge Queen.
    [B]Reading whatever books I want to the rescue!:beer[/B
    WannabeBarrister, WannabeWife, Wannabe Campaign Girl Wannabe MSE Girl #wannnabeALLmyFamilygirl
    #notbackyetIamfightingfortherighttobeMSEandFREE
    • enabledebra
    • By enabledebra 17th Aug 12, 12:59 AM
    • 7,395 Posts
    • 10,909 Thanks
    enabledebra
    I was very happy to see this board start up as I feel some other boards can be intimidating for posters wanting advice. I do think though that the concept is increasing showing itself to be unsuited to this forum as it is not actually operating as a forum but trying to be something else. Each tweek that is made to try and put a square peg in a round hole raises more questions than it answers. It would be much more appropriate for CAB to offer this service via it's own site(s) and MSE users can be signposted to it via appropriate boards.
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