Rights problems such as debt, employment, welfare benefits and family problems are widespread. They are problems of everyday life, affecting many people and many aspects of people's lives and are now well documented. In contrast, there has been little research on the role of family and friends when experiencing a problem and seeking advice. Drawing on comprehensive qualitative research, this article explores how people seeking advice for their rights problems rely on family and friends for help in the advice-seeking process. The research shows that help lies on a continuum from encouraging people to seek advice to assistance with the tasks necessary for problem resolution. The implications of this for service design are considered.