Introduction to welfare rights

This is essential training if you are starting off as a welfare rights adviser or need a good understanding of the benefits system. It introduces you to the key resources and skills you need and takes you through the main benefits in detail. Learning is through a mix of elearning and face-to-face training.

When you complete the course you will be awarded a certificate and get a complimentary copy of CPAG’s Welfare Benefits and Tax Credits Handbook.

The course covers:

 Part 1 Benefits overview

Through a short, interactive elearning course, Part 1 introduces you to the benefits and tax credits system. It includes a description of means-tested and non-means-tested benefits and explains how they work together. Taking about an hour, you go through the elearning when it suits you and complete it before attending Part 2.


Part 2 Working-age benefits

Through five-days training at CPAG’s training suite in Glasgow, Part 2 gives you a detailed introduction to means-tested benefits and tax credits and an opportunity to network with your fellow delegates. Through case studies, practical examples and using the CPAG Handbook, there is plenty of opportunity to explore the benefits system in detail.


Part 2 covers:

Universal credit

Get the skills you need to advise who can claim universal credit, how to claim and how to work out entitlement.


Jobseeker’s allowance and employment and support allowance

Learn how people claim these benefits in the universal credit system. You will cover how ill health and disability are assessed for ESA and what work-related conditions there are for JSA.


Working-age benefits – eligibility

Understand who is eligible for means-tested benefits outside the universal credit system – income support, income-based JSA, income-related ESA, housing benefit and tax credits.


Working-age benefits – amounts

Learn about the allowances, elements, premiums and components that make up these benefits and tax credits and how income and capital affect entitlement.


Transferring to universal credit

After learning about entitlement inside and outside the universal credit system you will get the skills you need to advise people on the transfer to universal credit from means-tested benefits and tax credits.

Part 3 Advice practice

Through a short elearning course, Part 3 shows you how to put your benefits knowledge into practice using the essential resource for advisers, CPAG’s Welfare Benefits and Tax Credits Handbook. Taking about an hour, complete this final elearning to be awarded your course certificate.


The Introduction to welfare rights course focuses on means-tested benefits for working age people. Further essential introductory training covers Income maximisation for older people, PIP and attendance allowance – an introduction, and Universal credit, ESA and the work capability assessment.