Income Maximisation Officer


General information:

Department : Children Families and Learning
Division : Social Care and Family Support
Grade : Grade 8
Contract : Full time contract with 35 hours per week

Purpose of the role :

To provide comprehensive welfare benefit claims support service for young people aged from 16 to 25.

To support general financial wellbeing of former relevant young people through expert advice, advocacy and representation, personal debt management, rent rears and overpayment management and referrals.

To provide assistance to the Income Maximisation Manager in delivering efficient finance and benefits support service including management of various data.

To work in partnership with personal advisers, social workers, landlords, foster carers, local authorities and external agencies to ensure effective management of service users’ benefits and finances.

Financial Dimension :

Key role to minimise young peoples’ debts and Leaving Care Service liabilities arising from Rent Arrears, Housing Benefit overpayments and Subsistence; ensuring prompt welfare benefits take-up and effective reconciliation of benefits claims, advances and overpayments.

Initial assessment of young persons’ financial circumstances in relation with benefit claims information and using discretion for referral for funding consideration.

Provide financial statements, assessing circumstances of young persons in further and higher education, to facilitate decision of the income maximisation manager; as part of discretional local authority funding and statutory higher education bursary process.

Monitor and complete specific funding approval process in conjunction with personal advisers, unit coordinators and finance team.

Key tasks :

Service Delivery-Coordination of Welfare Benefit Claims from start to finish, post-claim and general financial support

Benefits Casework Management

Finance & Resources

Quality and compliance with Benefits Legislation including Welfare Reform and Universal Credit

General :

Management of benefits casework comprising

–   Eligibility determination, documents gathering and verification

–   Arrangement of claim interview appointment

–   Claim Interview support one2one

–   Completion of claim forms (On-line & Clerical)

–   Preparation of claim supporting letters and other documents

–   Clerical Claims submission

–   General follow-up correspondence – Phone Calls, faxes, letters

–   Liaison with PAs, young persons, colleges, client representatives

–   Data management

–   Completion of Individual Client Benefits Diary

–   Electronic filing of claim documents

–   Post-claim follow-up, liaison with JCP

–   Advocacy – claim challenges, backdates & appeals

–   Confirmation of live claims and instigation of subsistence stoppage  and reconciliation with Leaving Care Grant

Assist administratively in work regarding service users and providers, to ensure that young people are financed in a way that maximises all financial entitlements.

Provide benefits information, summaries and reports to Income Maximisation Manager and other managers as required and maintain general data and files.

Assist Income Maximisation Manager to manage statistics.

Participate as advised by Income Maximisation Manager in
-Organising training and group sessions.
-Carry out other duties as may be required by the Income Maximisation Manager or other Managers; and participate in ad-hoc service assignments as required.
-Adjust efficiently to ever-changing welfare benefit regulations.

Benefits Claim Types to be managed are

– Income Support
– Jobseekers Allowance
– Housing Benefit
– Employment & Support Allowance
– Community Care Grant & Crisis Loan (LA Discretionary Support)
– Sure Start Maternity Grant
– Child Benefit
– Child Tax Credit
– Working Tax Credit
Standard Claim letters and documents required for claims are

– Claim Supporting Letter
– Third Party Authority
– Claimants Agreement
– LHA-HB Direct Payment Request
– Benefits Diary Sheet
– Leaving Care Council Tax Liability Form
– Benefit Take-Up Spreadsheet



Others :

-To take key part in care leavers group events including those which may take place after core work hours.

-Take part in external client visits with personal advisers.

-Attend court sessions to support young people in eviction proceedings

-Visit Jobcentre Plus offices as necessary to attend claim interviews and other matters; providing advocacy and representation.

-May be required to work occasionally with teams in other location.

Essential skills, abilities, and documentations :

-Enhanced DBS

-Good knowledge of general welfare benefits regulations preferably applicable to care leavers and young persons aged 16 to 25.


-Good knowledge of Welfare Reform and Universal Credit


-Knowledge of working with young persons especially within the age group mentioned above (including vulnerable people).


-Knowledge of Landlord and Tenancy Act 1987 or knowledge of Tenancy and Renting.


-Knowledge of working with young people aged from 16 to 25 or vulnerable people or knowledge of customer service within a social service setting.

-Educated preferably to degree level or good education with substantial experience working in a relevant role

-Advance numerical and analytical skills


-Good aptitude to understand wide range of benefits legislation and to appropriate accurately and constructively into claims process.


-Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing; and able to produce standard letters, reports and summaries.


-Good interpersonal skills and ability to interact with and manage young people effectively.


-Good IT skills with proficiency using general Microsoft programmes essentially Excel, Outlook, and Word. Ability and readiness to learn new systems speedily.

-Basic presentation skills and demonstrating ability to address a group