How to Handle a Financial Emergency When You’re Unemployed

money help for those that are unemployedA financial emergency can strike at any time, including when you’re unemployed. Often, it can feel like you don’t have any options for help since you don’t have a regular income to rely on, but there are ways to weather the storm and move forward. To help you handle a shortfall due to an unexpected emergency, here are some tips for handling the situation right.

Government Assistance
Depending on your unique situation, you may be eligible for financial assistance through certain crisis and special help programs offered by the government. For example, if you are having difficulties after a natural disaster that is not covered by the Disaster Recovery Payment, you could qualify for a crisis payment. You could also qualify for a carer adjustment if you provide care for a child with certain medical conditions or disabilities.

The requirements for these programs are well defined, so you must meet the criteria set forth to be considered eligible. However, if you do qualify, it is often wise to apply for assistance. Review different financial options to see what you may qualify for.

Charities and Nonprofits
Local charities and nonprofits may also be able to assist during a financial emergency if you are unemployed. These organisations focus on helping those experiencing serious hardships and may offer a range of options to help you recover financially.

In some cases, funds may be available to help you meet certain obligations, including housing and utility payments, household food purchases, or emergency transportation repairs. At times, the monies would be sent directly to the organizations that can provide the products or services you require, while others will allow you to receive the funds in cash to use as you see fit.

There is no guarantee a charity or nonprofit will be able to provide assistance even if you do qualify, as their funds are often limited and can be awarded on a first come first serve basis. However, if you are dealing with an emergency, it is certain a route worth exploring. A financial counsellor may be able to let you know what non-profits are available locally as well as nationally.

Friends and Family Members
If you have friends or family members who are more financially stable and have the ability to offer assistance, then requesting the money from them may be a wise choice. Generally, those closest to you want you to be safe and secure, so they may be willing to either give or lend the necessary funds to support your wellbeing.

In cases where they do offer the money, it is important to clarify whether it is a gift or a loan. That way, everyone is on the same page regarding repayment expectations. If it is a loan, make sure to specify when you expect to be able to return the funds, including developing a payment plan if necessary. Then, do your best to stick to the terms. Otherwise, the relationship may become strained if you fail to come through based on the prior agreement.

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