Advantages of Civil Services

When it comes to choosing one from government and private jobs, the choice always favors the civil services. However, the choice cannot be doubted. Government jobs come up with so many benefits like security, good pay scales and other facilities that it is out of the question to say “No” to it. A government job looks like a perfect position for almost all the economic conditions and other perspectives. The article discusses the five chief advantages of joining as a civil servant.

Stability and Security

The foremost advantage of choosing civil services is that there is no risk of losing your job like the private sector. Once you have got it, it’s yours until you retire from it. On the other hand, private companies neither offer such security nor the stability. After a certain period of time, they may not offer you the package you deserve. So, in that case, you will definitely have to switch from one company to another, which is not the case with government jobs. Thus, civil services are the priority because of the security it offers.

Solid Packages

Another benefit that the government jobs offer is the solid salary package. Although, it is believed that the private sectors offer more than the government sectors, but it is true to limited spheres only. A private financer’s package may beat the civil servants package, but there’s a lot of room for growth of a civil servant. In addition to it, their salary increases with an increase in the living cost and with stability.

Enough Vacations and Leaves

The government jobs offer a lot of holidays and leaves as compared to the private companies. As there is not much workload, you can avail paid leaves and you also enjoy a large number of holidays.


Government jobs offer so many allowances that inflation hardly affects you. You get travelling allowance, dearness allowance, grocery shopping discounts, etc. Not only you get it during you are on the job, but these allowances can be availed for personal usage. For e.g. you can travel anywhere in the country with concessions, can get special reservations, etc., which may not be enjoyed by the private employees.

Health Benefits

The Doctor’s fee is the most expensive affair these days. An ordinary man cannot think of reaching the doctor’s demands and get the treatment done. For this, government employees get extra health allowances. So, being a civil servant you need not worry about footing the doctor’s bill or about the mortgages. The government takes care of all your medical expenses.

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Protect Your Disabled Loved One With A Special Needs Trust

As you get older, you may be aware that your adult child who is disabled or unable to work and receives SSI or Medicaid benefits, may never be able to take care of him/herself. A concerned parent should be aware that there are ways to protect that disabled child for his/her lifetime and not endanger the child’s government benefits. The best way is to create a SPECIAL NEEDS TRUST.

A Special Needs Trust (SNT) can be created from the child’s own money – such as an inheritance, an insurance payout, or a personal injury settlement — or the money of a third party. This trust created from the individual’s own funds is more expensive because it must be approved by the court. The easiest and least expensive SNT to make is when a parent or grandparent or other third party pays for the trust and contributes a sum of money for the benefit of the disabled person, who is known as the beneficiary.

One of my clients had a brother who, at 45, was unable to hold a job due to severe COPD. The brother received SSI and Medi-Cal but had very little money for anything beyond basic necessities. The sister wanted to contribute $100,000 for her brother’s lifetime special needs. She paid for the trust and named her other brother as trustee. The trustee set up a bank account in the name of the trust and used the funds to pay for disabled brother’s needs, above and beyond his room and board, which are the only things covered by government benefits.


· An SNT ensures that a disabled person with assets over $2000 will still qualify to receive SSI, Medi-Cal and other government assistance necessary for their health and well-being.

· An SNT gives peace of mind to parents that their disabled child will be taken care of when they are no longer physically able to provide the care.


· A diligent trustee must be appointed who must handle all the money in the trust. The trustee’s job and could last a long time – for the entire lifetime of the disabled person.

· The beneficiary may never receive cash from the trust – only items for his/her special needs, such as medical and dental expenses, medical equipment, training and education, insurance, transportation, entertainment, even vacations, automobiles, real property, modifications to accommodate the disability and other items to improve the quality of life. The trustee pays for everything and the beneficiary receives what the trust has paid for.

· Most disabled persons want to handle their own money and must be convinced that this would disqualify them from receiving government benefits.

· Special care must be taken about distributions if the beneficiary is on Section 8 housing.

I f you have a child who will need outside assistance for the rest of his or her life, see an attorney sooner rather …

Finding the Right Govt Job Is Now Easy

Are you aspiring for state govt jobs? or, are you a central govt jobs aspirant? You can choose to appear for either one or both depending on your qualification and skills. Each year government recruitment drives ask for candidates to apply for hundreds of different posts. Getting government jobs has its perks. In addition to high salaries, there are other benefits like Grade Pay and pension facilities after retirement. All these and lots more attract aspirants from across the country to apply for these jobs. Whether you are applying for SSC group D jobs or civic volunteer jobs, you will definitely be entitled for a list of benefits. But govt job examinations are highly competitive and sheer hard work cannot bring you a job, if you do not know certain tips and tricks. Here is a list of tips and tricks that you must know to be able to get govt jobs easily:

Choose which group you fit in

Whether central government jobs or state govt jobs, there are four groups based on educational qualification of the aspirants. Group A jobs are for those who are highly qualified and it is often the toughest to crack. Then comes the Group B and C Jobs. The Group D positions are for repairing or maintenance professionals as well as for positions like technicians and guard. There are millions of aspirants for each of these posts and just a few hundred vacancies. So, you must work hard to survive the competition till the end!

Clear each stage

There are generally three stages to getting the joining letter in hand for central govt jobs and state govt jobs:

  1. The first stage is to clear the written examination
  2. The second is interview
  3. Third is clearing the cut-off list

Preparation to qualify all the stages requires a lot of preparation. There is an elaborate syllabus for each of the posts that the candidates need to complete to sit confidently for the written tests. One needs to follow the syllabus for each of the posts very minutely to be able to answer all the questions. Just working hard on completing the syllabus is not enough. You need to know the tricks and tips to manage time and to answer each question intelligently. When it comes to solving mathematics problems, you should be able to use short-cuts confidently. This will save a lot of time. If there are no negative markings, manage time effectively to answer all the questions, even the doubtful ones too. This will increase your chance to get high marks.

Find the right position

Finding the govt jobs that is in accordance to your qualification and interest is also important. Here’s what you need to do:

  • You must know that every year there are thousands of posts for which recruitment drives are announced.
  • You must find out what interests you the most. For example, find out whether you are interested in SSC jobs or civic volunteer jobs.
  • You must keep track of the recruitment drives

Civil Services As a Career in India

The Indian Administrative service (IAS) is the administrative unit of the Executive branch of the Government of India. The IAS officers handle all the important affairs of the Government. At the Central level, this involves the framing as well as the implementation of the Government policies. Every Indian eligible candidate shall be permitted 6 attempts at the examination.

The IAS officers look at the management of various administrative departments and their respective functions. This includes framing of policies & acting as advisors to the ministers as well as executing officers in charge of the administration of other smaller Indian administrative units. For Example, the District Magistrate is in charge of a district taking care of the law and order situation as well as the administration and the overall development of the district.

The Indian Police Service has major responsibility of a law and order in the state of India, constantly looking after the safety of the citizens of India. The Indian Police Service has various branches and associated departments like the Border Security Force – BSF, the Department of Home Guards, the Central Bureau of Investigation – CBI, the Department of Traffic Control, the Criminal Investigation Department, the Central Reserve Police force, the Crime Branch, etc. An IPS officer often shares his duty with the IAS officer within the same district.

Indian Foreign Service is concerned with India's External Affairs Ministry. The officers are responsible for framing the foreign policies plus maintaining and regulating the Indian embassies in other countries of the world. The third most important of Civil Services, the Indian Foreign Service (IFS), is the body of diplomats of India.

The Indian Railway Service is in charge of the huge network of Indian railways which is further divided into the Indian Railway Traffic Services, the Indian Railway Personnel Services, the Indian Railway Accounts Services & the Railway Police Service. The Railway Police Service looks after the security of the whole system, especially the passengers. The Indian Railway Traffic Service takes care of the scheduling of trains. The Indian Railway Personnel Service deals with recruitments of the officers.

The Indian Postal Service looks after the workings of the country's postal network which covers the telegraph service. Officers start out as Senior Superintendent of Post Offices in India. Postings can be anywhere in the country, also in the Central Ministry.

ICCES deals with the Indian customs and excise departments, while customs deals with the levying of taxes on things brought into the country and the later excise Duties deals with the taxation on goods which are produced in India.

It maintains the accounts of all the States of India. It has various branches such as the Indian Defense Accounts Service which deals with the expense of the Indian Defense. There is also an Indian …

Filing for Bankruptcy? Combat Stress With Facts

One reason many people in financial trouble try to avoid filing for bankruptcy like the plague is because their lack of knowledge. In the recent years, the US has seen a large number of Americans filing bankruptcy to eliminate debts, stop foreclosure and just get back on their feet. Unemployment now continues to stand at around 8% and it doesn't look like it is getting much better anytime soon. Many people are kicking the can down the road as they continue to borrow as much money as their creditors will allow them. A large group of the middle class is now borrowing to pay debts that they will never be able to pay back. The average debt to income ratio of the middle class is now 154%. At some point in time, the interest alone will force them into bankruptcy filing. They are doing nothing more than robbing Peter to pay Paul to continue their unsustainable lifestyle. Not only are the citizens of the US playing with fire, the government is running a $ 1 trillion deficit and is poised to surpass $ 17 trillion in debt in the next year. Ronald Reagan once compared to the government to someone spending money like a drunken sailor, but the only difference was at least the sailor was spending his own money.

For someone that is living this lifestyle and stressed out about making the decision to file bankruptcy, they should combat their fears and stress with facts about how their life will be after filing bankruptcy. Most people can't see themselves living without plastic and also believe that a bankruptcy filing will take that luxury away from them. Although creditors would like debtors to believe that they will no longer have access to the golden goose if they file bankruptcy, they are opportunists and see employed individuals emerging from bankruptcy being virtually debt-free. Typically, the same creditor might hold a grudge against that individual, but there are thousands that will be willing to take a chance.

Another thing that stresses people out when considering filing for bankruptcy is the possibility of others finding out. Pride is a powerful emotion that will make people do foolish things even not in their best interest. Because of pride many people continue throwing good money into the debt abyss knowing well that the debts will never be paid off. It's common for a bankruptcy attorney to hear a client speak of how they wished they did not throw all that money away and used bankruptcy much sooner. Hindsight is always 2020 and if they had only educated themselves with facts and not rumors they still would have all that money they threw away. First those that are still worried about someone finding out, they really have nothing to worry about unless that person is a creditor of theirs. When filing for bankruptcy is required for an individual to list all their creditors, even family members and friends if applicable. Even though it is public record, …

Foreclosure Solutions – Mortgage Loan Modification – Does It Really Work?

First let me answer a question you may have and that is exactly what is a Mortgage Loan Modification? A Mortgage Loan Modification is a fixed alteration to the terms of a Mortgagor's loan, it permits the loan to be reinstated, and the end result is generally a lowered monthly payment the Mortgagor can afford. This sounds like a good answer when looking for foreclosure solutions.

A short while ago in a hearing, convened by the bipartisan Congressional Oversight Panel, which had been given the duty of keeping track of the government foreclosure bailout programs, the panel members hammered the Treasury Department regarding the flaws in its mortgage loan mod procedures. This hearing came only days after a report published from the inspector general showed the agency's efforts failed to have apparent benchmarks and fell horribly short of its original goals and objectives. This program was hoped to be one of the foreclosure solutions that would benefit millions of Americans that are facing foreclosure.

Despite early expectations that the Home Affordable Modification Program would help out millions of stressed US citizens rework their mortgages and retain their homes, the modification program thus far has resulted in fewer than 500,000 permanent loan mods. Even though this is large, it pales as compared to the more than 7 million households facing foreclosure. So, as for one of the many foreclosure solutions out there, thus far it has not panned out anywhere near the forecasted expectations.

Modification Program – Falling Painfully Short Of Expected Results, 2 panel members expressed their frustration of the governments foreclosure solutions.

Panel member Richard Neiman, superintendent of banks for the state of New York, pronounced the loan program has dropped significantly short of their initial hopes. J. Mark McWatters, another panel member, an attorney and accountant, said the Obama administration had failed to supply meaningful relief to distressed families and that its projections had created unrealistic hopes and anticipations that the loan modification program would likely help a great deal more families .

Phyllis Caldwell, head of the Treasury Department's homeownership preservation office, defended the Obama administration goals, saying that the impact of its foreclosure mitigation programs should not be evaluated by the volume of permanent loan modifications exclusively.

She stated a trial loan modification that is made up of three months of lowered mortgage payments have given individuals and their families desperately needed time and space, even if they don't end up being fixed permanently. She also said the Treasury Department is beginning to change and is expanding the loan mod programs hoping get to more distressed families.

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Free List of Government Grants – Get Grants Today

Free money from grants was once a secret in America, but after the internet became popular you can easily see a free list of government grants and get grants today. This list will help you find the type of grants that you are looking for and help you with applying for them too.

By simply performing a grant search online that is free of cost you can easily find agencies that provide government grants in your area and grab this amazing opportunity. Once you find this agency, you can start to go through the hundreds of free money grant opportunities that are available at that agency for you and for your family.

There is no such limit to the number of free grants that you can apply for or receive and so if you can provide enough details, you may end up with more than one grant of yours getting accepted. There is a wide array of different government grant opportunities that can be taken advantage of. After thoroughly going through the national government grant list, you can do an online search to easily locate the ones that you feel you have the highest chances of getting. Some of the most popular grants that are available nowadays are:

1. Small business grants that help you with the money required to start up your business

2. Real estate grants that give you quick cash to invest in your home or property

3. College grants that help you pursue your educational dreams without having to worry about the fees

4. Personal debt grants that help you with paying off all your debts

These are only some of the few opportunities that can be taken advantage of through government grants and there are a large number of other grants that you will find in the government grant list. Don’t waste any time, take the opportunity.

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Teach English in Colombia: Grappling with Grammar, Gold, Guns, and Guayaba

Americans avoid Colombia for good reasons. A virtual civil war has been waged for nearly 40 years. Rates of crime and violence are among the world's highest. And then there's the "drug problem." Why would anyone consider coming here to teach English?

"I came because a friend who was working in Cali liked it here and recommended it," says Glenn Yates, a teacher now in his second year at a bilingual school. Tired of Canada's frigid winters, he fled to a land of year-round warm weather and an even warmer welcome.

Colin Jacobs, weary of gloomy days and drizzle, found his way to teaching English in Cali from his native England more than 20 years ago and hasn't left since. "I don't think I could live in London again," he says. "After adjusting to the near-perfect weather, the food, and the easy-going lifestyle here, I'm not really keen to go back. I'm spoiled for life."

So am I. Hundreds of varieties of flowers perfume the air, even in winter. Pantries abound with exotic fruits like Guayaba and Carambolo. The year-long growing season allows papayas to reach nearly the size of watermelons; mangoes can weigh up to two pounds each. Colombia's strong, black coffee, considered the world's richest, is served everywhere.

But Is It Safe?

There are problems, yes, but not of "run-screaming-to-the-hills" intensity. Most conflicts occur in the countryside. While this can make inter-city travel risky at times, residents inside major cities like Bogota, Cali, and Medellin feel little impact and live quite normally. Adjusting to power failures, phone or water outages, and rainy season flooding is more of a nuisance than life-threatening. Larger cities are reasonably well policed ​​and usually safe, if you're careful.

Drugs? Most illicit production is for export, so, except for warring drug factions in the coca-growing areas, there's not much everyday impact. During major holidays the government steps up military patrols of principal highways and vacation resort areas to insure protection and safer travel for vacationers.

Quality of Life

Cali, with two million residents, is known as the "Salsa capital of the world," rivaling Cuba. The two largest shopping malls house multi-cinema complexes featuring first-run US films in English with Spanish subtitles. English publications are readily available at bookstores and newsstands. Material in English can be borrowed free from the Universidad Santiago de Cali and for a $ 3 annual fee from the Centro Cultural Colombo Americano. The Municipal Theater, Tertulia Arts Complex, and Jorge Isaacs Theater offer regular productions in Spanish. Ethnic restaurants specializing in Latin American and Mediterranean cuisines continually tempt Caleño palettes. Holiday celebrations take place year-round. Check them out online at [] Colombia.html. You will never be bored in Cali.


Native-speaking English teachers are scarce here. Salaries reflect the high demand. Most teaching positions require an applicant to be a native speaker of English and have a university degree. A teaching certificate and some experience are a definite plus. Work is available at bilingual colegios, language institutes, and universities. …

Basics of the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP)

The Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) is a federal government assistance program created specifically to help homeowners who are current on their mortgage payments, but who are underwater on their mortgages. That is, they owe almost as much or more than the current value of their homes. No minimum credit score is required, and closing costs can be bundled into the new loan so homeowners don't need much cash up front. With today's low interest rates, qualifying for HARP can save a homeowner thousands.

Benefits of a HARP Refinance

The obvious benefit of HARP is that it provides a refinance option for homeowners who would not typically qualify for refinancing because they owe more than their homes are worth. Other benefits of a HARP refinance include:

Lower Mortgage Payment. Borrowers who refinance with HARP have lowered their monthly mortgage payments by an average of $ 191 / mo.

Lower Interest Rate. When you refinance with HARP, you can take advantage of today's low interest rates. Today's interest rates are over 30% lower than in 2008.

Fixed Interest Rate. If you currently have an adjustable interest rate, a HARP refinance will provide you with a fixed interest rate that can potentially save you thousands over the life of your loan.

No Negative Credit Impact. A HARP refinance creates no negative activity on your credit history.

Eligibility Requirements for a HARP Refinance

HARP is a completely voluntary program. The federal government provides financial incentives for your mortgage company to participate in HARP; However, it is entirely up to your mortgage company whether or not they will offer you a HARP refinance. If your mortgage company does choose to participate in HARP, it must adhere to strict guidelines set by the federal government, including homeowner eligibility requirements. In order to be eligible, you must meet the following criteria (keep in mind that these criteria may change from time to time):

Current on Your Mortgage. No 30-day + late payments in the last 6 months and no more than one in the past 12 months.

Residence Requirement. Your property must be:

  • your primary residence;
  • a 1-unit second home; or
  • a 1- to 4-unit investment property.

Eligible Loan. To be eligible, your loan must be backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

Loan Origination Date. Your loan must have been originated on or before May 31, 2009.

If you're not eligible for HARP, don't worry, there are several other mortgage assistance programs that you may qualify for. If you've been turned down for a HARP refinance, try again! HARP guidelines have recently changed and you may now be eligible.

How Do You Get a HARP Refinance?

To receive a HARP refinance, there is an application process similar to when you got your original mortgage. You will need to gather the required information, complete the application, and submit your request for mortgage assistance to your mortgage company. This is where you hear the horror stories from homeowners of …

Getting a Government Job – Top 10 FAQs About Answering Selection Criteria

Relax! We’ve got it covered. It’s really quite easy once you get started…

1. Do I need to complete Selection Criteria for non-government jobs?

For most private sector applications, you will need only a Resume and Letter of Application. However, many private sector organisations (universities, hospitals, etc.) now use Selection Criteria for appointment and promotion of staff.

2. Is a ‘Statement against the Selection Criteria’ the same as ‘Responses to Selection Criteria’ or ‘Summary of Responses to Selection Criteria’?

YES! This is a document in which you respond to Selection Criteria using concrete workplace examples to demonstrate your knowledge, skills and abilities in relation to the selection criteria.

3. What’s a Selection Criterion?

‘Criterion’ is the singular form of the word, ‘criteria’.

4. How much do I need to write for each Selection Criterion?

You need to write enough information to convince the selection panel that you have the knowledge, skills and ability to perform the job. Quality is more important than quantity. A rule of thumb is to write between half a page and one page in length for each criterion. In some cases, you are advised regarding word length required.

5. How long does it take to answer Selection Criteria?

This varies depending on your written skills and experience in writing applications. It usually takes many hours – even days – to write a professional application. People who say: ‘I’ll just throw together an application and see how I go’ rarely succeed.

6. How do I answer when there are double or triple barrel questions?

Each selection criterion may have several elements (eg oral and written communication skills and negotiation skills). Each section of the selection criterion must be addressed: Oral + Written communication skills + Negotiation skills.

7. If I can’t answer a criterion, what should I do?

Remember when you skipped a question on your exam paper at school and you scored zero points? Similarly, an unanswered criterion is worth nothing. If you don’t have the specific experience required, state how you have similar experience.

8. How many applications are usually received for each position?

It varies widely, but for positions such as an Information Officer, you may be competing with hundreds of other applicants for two or three available positions.

9. What is short-listing?

The selection panel develops a short list of applicants to be interviewed, based on how well their written applications meet the Selection Criteria or other selection tasks.

10. What is ‘weighting’ of criteria?

The selection panel nominates the rating of each criterion according to the requirements for performing the job. There’s no such thing as an unimportant criterion. Even one weighted at 10% deserves 100% effort and may be the difference between being selected for the position and being the ‘runner-up’.

Now, you have a basic understanding of what’s involved in applying for a government job. Remember when you learned to drive a car? It was really difficult trying to remember how to change gears … and steer…at the same …