The IDA recently launched a number of exclusive helpline services for members, which deal with a range of issues, including business assistance, tax audit, legal advice, and health and counselling. The helplines can be accessed 24/7, 365 days a year, and are available free of charge to members and their immediate family. Here are some examples of calls received since the helplines opened.

Legal advice: 1850 670 747

Calls to the legal helpline cover a broad range of issues but assistance has been given on:

  • a dispute regarding an expensive purchased item, which turned out to be faulty;
  • information regarding marital breakdown; and,
  • understanding the complexities of the probate process.

A number of calls were also received to access the tax protection policy following receipt of a tax audit notice.

Business assistance: 1850 670 747

This service has dealt with calls regarding a broken heating unit, and a call seeking a locksmith. If you ring this service, the person answering will track down a suitable company, make the appointment on your behalf, advise you of the estimated cost, ring to ensure timely arrival and, after the emergency has been dealt with, ring again to ask for your views, to ensure that only the very best service is offered to future callers.

Counselling: 1850 670 407

Unfortunately in these difficult economic times this helpline receives many calls regarding personal or business debts. Very often just one balanced conversation can help; however, if more regular support is required sequential counselling over a period of six weeks is agreed on the basis of weekly one-hour calls with the same counsellor. It is worth remembering that this service can be accessed free of charge by both IDU members and their immediate family. The average call lasts approximately 45 minutes and while anything can be discussed the most common issues are relationships (27.2% of calls), anxiety (8.9%) and depression (6.4%).

Health and medical information: 1890 254 164

While this helpline is not able to provide any form of diagnostic advice, it can give information regarding all aspects of health and fitness. For example, one caller had recently attended a health check and called to fully understand the significance, or otherwise, of his test results.